Date of Completion


Embargo Period



Christenson, Richard; Malla, Ramesh

Field of Study

Civil Engineering


Master of Science

Open Access

Open Access


This thesis presents two different applications of computer-aided non-destructive approaches for structures monitored under operational conditions. The first part of the thesis is the development of a graphical user interface (GUI) software for real-time autonomous assessment of structural health condition based on the signature vibration properties of the structure under study. The program, called ConImote2, operates on the wireless sensor network platform called imote2. ConImote2 is created in the Matlab platform for accessibility and to enable extension of its capabilities by the user. The primary goal of creating the program is to overcome the issue of data inundation from SHM systems by developing an autonomous data processing routine for instantaneous feedback on structural health conditions. Lab-scale validations of the program were used to fix bugs and provide important metrics about the sensitivity of the underlining algorithm to real changes in the structure. The second part of the thesis presents a new approach for optimum model selection during vibration-based finite element model updating of civil structures. The goal of this approach is to provide an evidence-based approach to model selection to ensure physical meaning in the non-unique optimum solutions obtained from a numerical optimization process. An algorithm is developed to rank the optimum solutions according to their physical plausibility. The algorithm uses data from static behavior of the structure to decouple the ranking algorithm from the vibration-based optimization algorithm. The approach is demonstrated on an in-service highway bridge instrumented with a sparse array of different sensors.

Major Advisor