Developing a reliable in-situ testing method to determine the strength of concrete for traffic opening is a critical need for INDOT, due to the fast-pace construction schedule exposes concrete pavements and/or structures undergoing a substantial loading conditions even at its early ages. Nevertheless, the current methods for determining traffic opening times are inefficient and expensive, often causing construction delays or cost overruns. To address this critical need, we propose to develop an in-situ nondestructive testing (NDT) method that enables an accurate and efficient understanding of early age properties of concrete using electromechanical impedance (EMI) method coupled with piezoelectric sensors.

Previous literature has indicated that a piezoelectric sensor coupled with electromechanical impedance (EMI) technique can be a promising method to monitor the concrete properties changes of newly casted concrete and evaluate the condition of existed concrete at the laboratory scale. Based on the direct and indirect effect, piezoelectric materials can act both as a transducer and a receiver to capture the properties change of host structures of which it is attached to. The high frequency detection and fast response of this method will provide an accurate and reliable dataset of early age properties of concrete. This data enables us to monitor the in-situ concrete strength for determining the optimal traffic opening time.

In this report, the feasibility of EMI sensing technology for monitoring the compressive strength gain of concrete is systematically investigated. The substantial experiments were conducted from cement paste, various mortar, concrete to field test on the interstate highway. Also, computer modeling work was performed to assist the experimental studies. Finally, the novel EMI technology can be delivered to DOT as one of the optional methods for in-situ concrete strength monitoring to determine the optimal traffic opening time.

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Streaming Media


concrete, piezoelectric, EMI, open traffic, sensing traffic opening, concrete, strength, stiffness, electrotechnical impedance, sensing, non-destructive testing (NDT)

SPR Number


Performing Organization

Joint Transportation Research Program

Publisher Place

West Lafayette, IN

Date of this Version