Innovative technology development for safe excavation

Xiaodong Huang, Daniel Bernd, Leonhard E. Bernold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)


Serious injuries and costly damages caused by excavators hitting underground utilities are constantly in the headlines of the news media. The accidents sometimes result in the death of one or more persons. Thus, excavation represents a dangerous operation that has to be executed with care. The Construction Automation and Robotics Laboratory at North Carolina State University has been searching for a technology to help avoid these types of accidents. A prototype of the active metal detection and tracking system has been developed using a nontraditional approach. The system generates and transmits its own magnetic impact and detects the coupling effect with any buried utility line in its detection range. It is installed directly on the excavating equipment and integrated with its operation. Experiments have been carried out with this system and the results are promising. The work deliberated in this paper presents an ongoing effort to develop an effective and reliable system that can be attached to any type of construction and utility digging equipment for underground utility line detection.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-96
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1996
Externally publishedYes

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