Minnesota Department of Transportation

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Road Research

MnROAD Sensors - Environmental and Dynamic

Orange barrels on a highway

Environmental and Dynamic Sensors

Measuring pavement structure responses to environmental change and dynamic loading are among the most important ongoing tasks at MnROAD. Many of the measurements are accomplished through use of electronic instruments. More than 10,000 electronic sensors have been installed and monitored since 1993. See factsheet for information on the materials materials and equipment necessary for data collection at MnROAD.

Environmental Sensors (static)

Environmental or static measurements are usually made continuously for the life of the sensor or the cell. The time periods for data collection are most commonly 15 minutes. Environmental measurements include temperature, water content, humidity, soil pressure, pore water pressure, strain, electrical resistivity and often variants on these measures.

Dynamic Sensors (load response)

Dynamic or load response measurements are usually made seasonally using the MnROAD test vehicle to provide uniform pavement loading. The test cells are closed to public traffic during scheduled data collections and sensor load response is acquired in real time. Load test measurements may include stress, strain, displacement, pore water pressure, and accelerometer data.

Sensor Lookup Tool - A tool for finding sensors in MnROAD test cells.

MnROAD Site Infrastructure Factsheet (pdf) - A general discussion of materials and equipment necessary for data collection at MnROAD.