Earthquake risk assessment actualised

After The National Measuring System Development Project for Monitoring Structural Health Project carried out, with the collaboration of Istanbul University, Yıldız Technical University, and Gebze Technical University, which has recently been completed, the prototype of a new and fully local product came out that could be used for structural health at earthquakes and other natural disasters.

The whole process of electronic equipment development and integration of the project was provided by the capabilities and facilities of the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department of Istanbul University.

7/24 measuring

Commenting on the project Yıldız Technical University Faculty of Geophysical Engineering Department Assoc. Dr. Burak Akpınar, "Our plan is a project realised within the scope of TÜBİTAK 1005 research support program. It is a project where multidisciplinary researchers are involved and working. I co-worked with faculty members from other universities on the project I was conducting. When we say 'monitoring structural health’ what should come to our mind is engineering work done today. These are engineering works such as high-rise buildings, bridges, dams, and towers. Within a specific project and after the project has been done, there should be no problems in a building, and it should be checked and determined whether the building has undergone any deformation; otherwise, terrible results might arise. Our project is a project developed to do these controls. It is a project we have done to determine the movements of the structure by making measurements 24/7 in the engineering constructions we have been talking about and to determine on time whether there is a dangerous situation or not and to warn and take precautions when necessary.

Pioneering project

Stressing the project being developed by Turkish engineers in Turkey, Akpınar went on: “One of the important features of our project is that it is the first product in this area that has been made useful model registration to the Turkish Patent Institute and carried out jointly by Turkish national engineers. Another important feature is the cost advantage. Especially since the hardware design and integration is done by the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of Istanbul University, it has a cost advantage compared to similar products purchased from abroad. Since the hardware design and integration were performed by the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of Istanbul University, it has a cost advantage compared to similar products purchased from abroad. In this context, a structural health monitoring assessment software has also been developed. What is the most important thing about our project is that it is national. It is a system developed by Turkish engineers in Turkey, and it is the only system currently applied in this context.”

IU produces hardware

IU Faculty of Engineering Assoc. Dr. Koray Gürkan gave the following information about the project: “The place where the hardware of the project was produced was Istanbul University. We had to produce equipment in the dimensions that Construction and Map Engineers wanted. One of the most important components of the hardware is the GPS which calculates the position with high accuracy. We connected this GPS to a specific station called CORS via a GSM modem and obtained coordinate corrections so that we could calculate the position at high accuracy. Since the studies are carried out within the scope of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of Istanbul University, we have a system which is shaped according to the user. We, engineers, are primarily responsible for doing useful things that will touch human lives and try to instil this knowledge in our students. The number of projects that are realized through multidisciplinary joint research and that will be a direct solution to social problems need to be increased further.”

People to feel safe

Assistant Prof Ahmet Anıl Dindar from Gebze Technical University said that he felt happy with the project, and went on: “We are glad that we have gained a lot of know-how in our own country, from our own universities, to prepare for new concepts with our researchers, and with this knowledge we are producing equipment and tools. Our goal in this project is to provide knowledge and skills. In earthquakes or similar disasters, citizens need to know how safe they are in the building they are in or the environment they are in. The equipment developed in our project can give us data for 7/24. It also provides the opportunity to compare the up-to-date results with the previous ones. With the project, we aim to have people in these environments have information about short-term intelligence, and how safe they are, wherever they can reach, without waiting for the response of decision-makers immediately after the disaster."

We will carry our knowledge to the world

Assistant Prof Dindar concluded: “Californians are asked to have this kind of sensors in buildings, which informs the landlord or the lodger about the earthquake right away so that they can act accordingly. If we can, in national terms, reduce the price of the sensor, we will enable people to get it. We have taken the first step.”

It is crucial within the scope of the project to make sure the health and stability of tall structures such as bridge, dam, tower; and tracking motions of these structures, detecting potential dangerous situations on time so as to take precaution.

Among the members of “The National Measuring System Development Project for Monitoring Structural Health Project” is Prof Engin Gülal Yıldız from the Department of Construction Engineering and Assoc. Prof Burak Akpınar and Assistant Prof Nedim Onur Aykut from the Department of Map Engineering of Yıldız Technical University, Assistant Prof Koray Gürkan from the Faculty of Engineering of Istanbul University, Assistant Prof Ahmet Anıl Dindar from the Department of Construction Engineering of Gebze Technical University.

Story: Ebru SÖNMEZ

Translated by Mahmut Kocakaya

IU Press & Public Relations

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