News in 2013

2nd Joint International Symposium on Deformation Monitoring

9-10 September 2013, Nottingham, United Kingdom

JISDM: Conference chairs and speakers

At the University of Nottingham, UK, a joint international symposium was organised on deformation monitoring of large engineering structures and (local to regional) geo-hazards.

After the Hong Kong meeting in 2011 this was the second time that FIG (Commission 6, WG 6.1 “Deformation Measurements and Analysis”) and IAG (International Association of Geodesy, Commission 4 “Positioning and Applications”) has organized a joint symposium on this topic, following up the long series of individual symposia within FIG (since 1975) and IAG (since 1996). This time the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS, Commission V “Close-Range Sensing: Analysis and Applications”) has joint this group as 3rd international geospatial association.

This common interest of these sister organisations is understandable, as deformation monitoring of both man-made structures and critical natural sites is an important aspect of our scientific and practical activities. Structural failures such as collapses of dams, tunnels, bridges or buildings and geo-hazards caused by events such as landslides, ground subsidence and earthquakes are world-wide problems that often lead to significant economic and life losses. It is therefore important for society to carry out systematic research and development to a better understanding and management of these problems.
Rapid developments in our professional fields, like modern sensors and sensor networks, real-time processing algorithms, advanced analysis tools, micro-electronics and computer sciences, wireless communications and machine control have significantly changed instrumentation, methodology and system set-up. The symposium emphasized the high demands to develop new monitoring concepts and solutions to meet the needs of society in minimizing negative environmental impacts.

This 2nd JISDM was held on the charming campus of the University of Nottingham on September 9-10, 2013. Around 200 people from 26 countries attended the conference, with a strong group from China due to the local conference chair, Dr. Xiaolin Meng, who is Director of the Nottingham Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre, but indicating an increasing interest in China in this topic, too. For this 2nd JISDM 180 paper abstracts were submitted, 80 papers were selected for oral presentations in 20 parallel sessions and 30 paper abstracts were presented as posters. Additionally six student paper prizes were awarded. Ten organisations and companies presented their latest deformation monitoring solutions at the associated exhibition.

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Conference hall at 2nd JISDM in Nottingham, UK

There were four keynote speeches in the opening ceremony. Professor Chris Rizos, President of the IAG, gave a talk on “Engineering Geodesy: Its Links to Modern Geodetic Practice”; Professor Andreas Weiser from ETH Zurich presented “From Spatially Discrete to Areal Deformation Analysis: Methodical and Instrumental Challenges in Terrestrial Geomonitoring”; Mr Barry Colford, Bridgemaster of the Forth Road Bridge, discussed “The Maintenance of Long Span Bridges”; and Dr Xiaolin Meng, as JISMD organiser, introduced the topic “GeoSHM: GNSS and EO for Structural Health Monitoring of Bridges”.

After the conference a technical tour was arranged for 38 people to the Forth Road Bridge, Scotland, on September 11-12. The current Forth Road Bridge was the longest suspension bridge outside the USA when it was opened in 1964. The Forth Bridge, a railway bridge adjacent to the road bridge, when it was opened in 1890 was the first major structure in Britain to be constructed of steel. Technical staff guided these JISDM delegates to see the maintenance facilities, describe their current and future difficulties in bridge management, and to visit the Forth Bridge and the new Forth Road Bridge (named the “Queensferry Crossing”) site.

Undergoing a complete peer-review process the conference papers will be published as special issues of five journals: Journal of Navigation, Survey Review, Journal of Applied Geodesy, Applied Geomatics and ICE Forensic Engineering.

The next JISDM is intended to be organized in about two year. A bidding to take over the organisation of this meeting is open right now.

Wolfgang Niemeier, Chris Rizos and Xiaolin Meng

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GPS Antennas in front of Forth Road Bridge, Scotland

19 November 2013