Monitoring CLT Highway Noise Barriers


(Highway Barrier with SMT PMM sensors embedded)


In collaboration with researchers from Clemson University's Glenn Civil Engineering Department, SMT has provided 18 point moisture measurement sensors (PMM's). These PMM sensors are embedded into the CLT panel to continuously monitor the moisture content of this barrier. In the future, the research team from Clemson will also install rain gauges on the panel in order to monitor the amount of water hitting the surface.


The project aims to identify the resiliency and effectiveness of Mass Timber products when used as noise barriers for highways. This project which is lead by Dr. Laura Redmond, Dr. Weiching Pang, and Master's Student Harsh Bothra may prove to revolutionize the material standards for highway noise barriers. Initially, the group was focused on collecting other data relating to existing noise barrier projects. Using this data, the team was able to come up with a design for a Mass Timber noise barrier consisting of a 3 ply Southern Yellow Pine CLT panel and steel posts for a potential site in Georgia.


(Mockup drawings for barriers)


Although SMT's collaboration on this project goes as far as the instrumentation, the research team is also collecting data on the price of materials, transportation, and labour. The team has been engaging with CLT producers, contractors, and DOT's to gather the relevant information to estimate the standard cost of this project. This data will be used to measure the cost-effectiveness of the new CLT barriers compared to traditional concrete Highway Barriers.


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