Crack tracker (1998)
Cracks in the road are not only annoying, they can develop into expensive repairs. Imagine a device that travels at 80km per hour, which can detect and record every tiny crack on a highway.
The name RoadCrack… may sound like a group of rock stars, and this group certainly likes bright lights and cameras.
But although they spend most of their time on the road, they’re making sure that as you travel down the highway you rock and roll as little as possible…
Bumps and cracks in the road not only jangle the nerves of drivers but they can lead to major damage, costing millions of dollars.
But now a new CSIRO automated system, called RoadCrack, is able to detect cracks down to a width of one millimetre before they widen.
A special reflector system creates enough light to capture images of even the tiniest cracks, on digital cameras.
These high-resolution images are then relayed in a continuous stream, line by line, in half-metre intervals.
Image processing then extracts the relevant information in real time… and the crack data is stored.
The most important breakthrough with this system came when CSIRO developed algorithms and computer hardware for extracting the relevant information in real time at highway speeds…
“During testing, our system has successfully detected and classified a high percentage of cracks down to a width of one millimetre. And it’s been designed to do this up to speeds of 105 kilometres an hour.”
With this system, maintenance costs can be minimized as small cracks are detected and filled before they develop and lead to major damage.
This is the only system in the world capable of recording such a range of pavement types with such accuracy.
Covering up to 400 kilometres a day, the savings in Australia in the first year alone are estimated at tens of millions of dollars.