Sensor & Satellite Asset Alert and Management System
The Sensor and Satellite Asset Alert and Management System (SSAAMS) project will take a systemic approach to improving infrastructure management of energy, transport and urban earthwork systems. The core innovation of the proposed system is the development of business decision support tools based on the analysis of low cost sensor data, combined with open access satellite data, and other sources of data to monitor and predict areas of high risk where disruption to urban living might occur.
Project Start: November 2017
Duration: 22 Months
Target Country: UK
About the Project
The SENSOR and SATELLITE Asset Alert and Management Systems (SSAAMS) is an Innovate UK funded 2 years project started during November 2017. SSAAMS will use geo-analytical techniques to develop online, map-based ASSET MANAGEMENT decision support tools derived from sensor data, calibrated with satellite data and other data sets to monitor and predict areas of high risk where disruption to transport, energy and urban systems might occur. Infrastructure operators will be able to remotely and accurately monitor and assess the factors that affect the condition and long term stability and resilience of their assets.
A monitoring and alerting system will identify potential and actual ‘failure’ events so asset managers can take proactive action to mitigate a potential event, or to react quickly and precisely to detected failures therefore making the infrastructure assets more resilient and minimise costly future interventions as well as improving the daily lives of citizens.
The project team is a consortium of organisations that have experience in all the areas needed to fulfil the project: LEAD – Amey (infrastructure company), Rezatec (SME satellite data analysts), Senceive (sensor provider) and University of Birmingham (railway, climate change).
This project aims to improve monitoring of assets to minimise failure from landscape hazards, disruptions and thereby reduce maintenance costs and extend asset lifetimes. The outputs of the project will be twofold:
- A universal platform as an asset decision support service for different business areas and systems with visualised analytics and proactive alerts via secure online data services, and
- Improved understanding of analytical improvements to identify risks to transportation.
The business need that SSAAMS addresses is the current lack of extensive data for asset monitoring of long, linear infrastructure such as railway earthworks to inform asset managers thereby optimising maintenance budgets and reducing the risk of failures. The most significant causes of transport, energy and urban system failures are terrain motion and flooding which are exacerbated by extreme weather, which is predicted to increase.
Current expensive state-of-the-art techniques for monitoring infrastructure include LiDAR, aerial imagery, tilt metres, traditional in-situ ground instrumentation and distributed acoustic sensing combined with weather forecasting. SSAAMS addresses this problem by exploiting the synergies of well targeted ground based sensors providing continuous accurate data at specific points and the new satellite data, which provides greater spatial data, but at less regular intervals, thereby creating an enhanced/more powerful combined data set.
The benefits of SSAAMS include:
- Improved intelligence
- Greater asset resilience and longer lifetime expectancy
- Reduced cost of asset management and event failure incidents
- Reduced impacts on citizens from transport, energy and urban system disruptions.
Amey (LEAD) is one of the largest and most diverse companies working for the public and regulated sectors in the UK, with the ultimate aim of creating better places for people to live, work and travel. Amey has a wealth of experience both in deploying and managing sensors in a number of business areas including Highways and Rail. SSAAMS’ proposed combination of sensor technology and data will enable the company to manage infrastructure assets better and plan predictive maintenance activities across several business areas including road, rail and utilities. It will complement the company’s approach to asset management and enable Amey to operate more efficiently in the future.
Amey’s core asset management services include:
- Engineering (feasibility, design, build, inspect & maintain)
- Utilities (repair & maintain infrastructure UK wide)
- Transport (managing railways, motorways, roads and airports)
- Environmental (energy & waste management)
- Defence (Maintain & operate majority of MOD sites UK wide)
Rezatec provides Big Data geoanalytics using its proprietary algorithms and advanced machine learning techniques to deliver strategic, commercial insight for the customers. Rezatec delivers actionable insights as Data-as-a-Service landscape intelligence via our online decision support portal. It helps businesses make critical decisions about the management and optimisation of their land-based assets through the sophisticated analysis of increasingly complex Earth Observation (EO) imagery and data. Using proprietary algorithms and modelling, Rezatec provides intelligence to help improve operational efficiency and whole-life impact whilst substantially reducing the cost of monitoring land-use change and environmental risk to assets.
Rezatec will offer a service differing to their current offering focused on analysis of historic asset trends and will interrogate satellite data sets via state-of-the-art automated, interferometric processing workflows to monitor live terrain motion and to assess soil moisture levels. Rezatec’s unique strength lies in its ability to aggregate diverse data from satellite, airborne and ground instruments to provide critical decision support tools. It will focus on developing a universal platform as an asset decision support service for different business areas and systems with visualised analytics and proactive alerts via secure online data services using the hybrid data sets from the Sensors & Satellite, and provide improved understanding of analytical improvements to identify risks to transportation infrastructure. The data service will be provisioned as digital maps and supplementary services that indicate where network risks are identified.
Senceive is a UK company, but with international reach and is the global benchmark for monitoring. New but proven, reliable products are continually in development, extending the range, ease of use and performance of monitoring. With this continuous innovation, Senceive enable an ever-wider range of assets to be monitored quickly, easily, safely and highly cost effectively. Senceive systems are on 100’s of structures across the UK and beyond and are a key enabler to manage the infrastructure of the world’s built environment and transport systems.
Senceive’s unique wireless sensing technology combines: low power and ultra-long life; low energy intelligent computing; high precision, high stability and high resolution sensors. Senceive has a relentless focus on R&D with outstanding customer service, and is applying its know-how and expertise to solving challenging and difficult structural/geotechnical monitoring problems.
Senceive will support SSAAMS objectives in providing the sensors, a revolutionary state-of-the-art instrument with better measurement precision compared to traditional asset assessment tools. Live sensor data, supplemented by satellite data will enable landscape hazards to be located/detected precisely.
The University of Birmingham team is combining skills from the Railway and Vehicle Technology, in particular the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE), and the Power and Infrastructure Research Groups in the School of Engineering into SSSAAMS. BCRRE is one of the leading European academic research groups in the rail domain. Drawing on a team of over 130 academic staff, researchers, and PhD students, the BCRRE is actively involved in a wide range of projects and industrial research collaborations. The Power and Infrastructure Research Group carries out cutting-edge research that provides sustainable and resilient solutions to some of the complex engineering issues faced by humanity in the 21st century. Our vision is to foster a research environment which supports and promotes cross-disciplinary research enabling innovative engineering to provide reliable, safe and resilient infrastructure, transportation and smart energy systems for the cities of the future.
The Birmingham team consider all levels of technology integration from initial sensor system design, to monitoring system architecture, to processing algorithms, and decision support systems. Recent relevant projects include work on fundamental monitoring system designs for railway infrastructure; novel sensor systems and monitoring architectures; and data standards. Particular areas of knowledge and expertise relevant to the SSAAMS project are:
- Sensing technologies and infrastructure monitoring including a range of wireless sensors deployed on water utilities
- Applying geotechnics linking in-situ soil measurements to earthwork stability understanding the mechanisms of failure
- Impacts of climate change on the rail network
- Development of in-situ sensors and links to the Railway Centre at Birmingham