Those in the mid-west like to joke that there are two seasons: winter and construction! While closed lanes can cause headaches, it’s important that concrete is given enough time to cure before it accommodates traffic. To better understand exactly how far along concrete is in the maturation process, the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) sought help from Purdue University engineers to take away the unreliable guesswork of how long concrete needs to mature. The Purdue team created and installed sensors on three highways in Indiana, which collect data on the concrete to determine the perfect time to re-open lanes after construction. Researchers say the policies could save millions of dollars per year and cut down on traffic. By leaving the sensors within the concrete for an extended period, engineers can study the effectiveness of their work over time, as opposed to the conventional testing period of just 28 days. This also will communicate to INDOT when concrete needs to be replaced.
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