2002 Annual

Tuesday, 15 January 2002: 2:45 PM
The integration of real-time and forecast weather data into the control decision system of a geothermally-heated bridge deck
Derek S. Arndt, Oklahoma Climatological Survey, Norman, OK; and S. C. Jenks, K. N. Pandit, J. R. Whiteley, and R. L. Elliott
Poster PDF (16.0 kB)
The Geothermal Smart Bridge (GSB) Project is currently under development at Oklahoma State University (OSU). This paper provides an overview of the collection, dissemination and ultimate use of weather data related to control decisions in the GSB Project. Control decisions required to initiate heating of a bridge deck are primarily governed by future occurrences of freezing/frozen precipitation (and condensation) events. Hence, specific forecast products are selected for use in the control decision algorithm.

The Visual BASIC control system software (CSS) under development integrates forecast and real-time data into a bridge deck model. The function of the CSS is to predict an optimum temperature trajectory for the bridge deck during a desired time horizon. This information will be used to activate the most appropriate combination of one or more pairs of heat pumps on the bridge. Criteria proposed for use in the CSS module are: (1) forecast temperature; (2) probability/magnitude precipitation forecasts; (3) observed solid precipitation at the bridge site's sensor; (4) encroachment of precipitation calculated from radar data; and (5) dewpoint depression at the bridge site. Data used in these categories come from a variety of forecast and real-time data.

The CSS is being tested on an experimental bridge on the OSU campus in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Archived forecasts, observations from the Oklahoma Mesonetwork and data from the bridge's sensors are used as input to the CSS. After real-time testing during the winter of 2001-02, and further refinement, the module will be ready for deployment at an operational bridge in Oklahoma.

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