Objectives of the service
SGAM is developed and optimized to perform hazard and risk assessment on geotechnical assets which are key elements for the efficiency of many ground-based activities and their systematic management. The system aids users who need to monitor many infrastructures simultaneously, require an accurate knowledge on which elements are at risk and appropriate mitigation and maintenance plans. This is achieved through the analysis of large-coverage EO data and their integration with field measurements and inventory maps through Artificial Intelligence algorithms. The objective of this project is to create a standardized and industrialized service that automatically identifies anomalies, involved assets and their potential vulnerability based on predictable scenarios, while also offering predictive maintenance plans, just like an ad-hoc consultancy.
Users and their needs
Users’ problems can be summarized as:
monitoring activities with high accuracy over large areas,
predictive maintenance of geotechnical assets,
risk assessment based on vulnerability and loss scenarios,
identification of key geotechnical assets of interest,
mitigation action plans and priorities.
The SGAM service is primarily addressed to the entities in charge of transport networks maintenance management. However, service applications can be extended to any linear infrastructure network, such as Oil&Gas pipelines, aqueducts and assets related to the water supply networks, electric networks, etc. or punctual structures (i.e. buildings).
The pilot users involved in the requirements definition and in the validation phase are SALT (Società Autostrade Liguri Toscane), a freeway company that manages highway sections in the whole country and conducts constant monitoring and control of key structures, and CMT (Città Metropolitana di Torino), an Italian administrative entity established in 2015 that encompasses the city of Turin and several surrounding municipalities, which is in charge of ensuring the safety and functionality of public structures, infrastructures, and strategic assets (roads, bridges, public buildings, etc.). Currently targeted users (pilot and potential) are transportation companies, hydroelectric power companies, civil engineering firms, research centres and government entities from Italy and the United States.
Service/ system concept
SGAM is provided through a web-platform that runs a cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) and with API for the connection to the system. The users shall provide their Area of Interest and Asset Information and Value as inputs on the platform. Additional EO products (High Resolution Radar, Optical, Multispectral/Hyperspectral data) can also be loaded, if available. The system features two automatic processing chains (A-DInSAR module, PhotoMonitoringTM module) for the analysis of EO data. The results from the automatic analysis modules are integrated with Informative Layers and data from a Geohazard Database, and post-processed with an AI-driven Data Fusion module. The outputs of SGAM are collected in the Asset Management Toolbox (AMT) dashboard, which includes:
automatic identification of anomalies and classification of the phenomena triggering them,
automatic identification of the interference with the involved assets,
potential expected vulnerability based on predictable risk scenarios, and relative prioritization,
risk mitigation actions.
The AMT provides users with simple and direct information that helps them prioritize and manage maintenance operations on key assets.
Space Added Value
Space assets offer a great opportunity to thoroughly investigate large areas with remarkable precision, enabling the implementation of infrastructure management strategies based on up-to-date monitoring data, which helps prioritize actions effectively.
One of the greatest advantages and distinctive features of Earth Observation data is the possibility to use it for historical analyses, leveraging the vast archives of imagery available from previous decades.
By combining and integrating A-DInSAR (Advanced Differential Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) and PhotoMonitoringTM techniques, a comprehensive representation of the phenomena under investigation is achieved. Specifically, the InSAR technique enables the precise measurement of displacements in unstable areas with millimeter-level accuracy. Meanwhile, the PhotoMonitoringTM technique facilitates the identification of areas affected or potentially affected by events such as floods, fires, collapses, and more. In this way, the geospatial information provided by EO data can be suitably matched with any other ground segment spatial data, for their integration in SGAM.
Image credit: NHAZCA
The project started in June 2023 and the Critical Design Review (CDR) has been completed in December 2023.
The technical design concept has been presented and accepted. The relevant parts are the:
geohazard database (see Figure 1) identifying the most relevant features to analyse the interaction between infrastructure and landslide layer of the surrounding areas;
user interface access module;
identified case study of the A15 highway with the Pilot User SALT.
Regarding the business aspect, we are:
expanding partnerships with large Italian companies managing highways and railways, with several ongoing meetings and possible signing of Proof of Concept.
defining a digital marketing strategy, outlining an editorial plan.
We will attend at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) in Washington in Jan 2024. We participated at the Earth Technology Expo in Florence and the New Space Economy in Rome, with a dedicated talk about the project.
For the coming months, we are going to reach the customers with a prototype, offering the main outputs and showing them the added value of the project, highlighting the "SMART" part of the service.