VANCOUVER, Jul.15, 2020 – Canada Concrete MRI Inc. (Concrete MRI), a startup in incubation at Empowered Startups Ltd, is honoured to announce that its collaborative research project with Simon Fraser University (SFU) – School of Mechatronics Systems Engineering – is being partially supported through a $160,000 two-year grant from the Mitacs Accelerate Program. This grant enables Concrete MRI to conduct further research supporting the development of an intelligent device to monitor concrete quality.
About Concrete MRI
Concrete MRI is committed to offering the best solution in monitoring concrete quality in buildings and infrastructure by developing a revolutionary device based on an Intelligent Piezoelectric Transduction system that allows real time monitoring. It provides a time and cost advantage for structural engineers, real estate developers, and civil and infrastructure maintenance services. A key feature of the innovative new Piezoelectric system is that it does not require any direct access to concrete sites.
“Many civil infrastructure projects and buildings globally would benefit from having a state-of-the-art device that can identify anomalies in concrete on a real-time basis. This will significantly reduce costs and workforce requirements to monitor concrete quality. We have been searching for a suitable partner to help design and improve this idea. Fortunately, we have found this valuable partner at Simon Fraser University – School of Mechatronics Systems Engineering. I believe that through collaboration with SFU’s School of Mechatronics System Engineering and Mitacs, we will be able to reach our fullest potential to develop an innovative solution to the global concrete monitoring problem.” – Hoang Nhan Nguyen, CEO/Founder Concrete MRI.
“This project is a great example of utilizing modern technology to develop smart civil structures that outperform existing ones in terms of safety and performance. Current civil structures are mainly passive, requiring regular manual inspections that can miss certain catastrophic structural failures. Concrete MRI utilizes advanced signal processing and intelligent algorithms (machine intelligence), along with reliable sensor and actuator technologies, to develop innovative civil structures that are empowered with real-time self-monitoring and fault diagnostics features.” – Dr. Mehrdad Moallem, Professor, SFU – School of Mechatronic Systems Engineering
The research will create an intelligent monitoring device that is expected to have a significant role in improving the safety of future building structures and infrastructure systems.
Concrete has the highest consumption rate among all manufactured materials, which is even higher than any other artificial content. Concrete is the material of choice for many critical civil structures and infrastructure, such as dams, bridges, tunnels, skyscrapers, hospitals, schools, public buildings and concrete-based transport infrastructure, due to its affordability, flexibility and energy efficiency. Many desirable properties of concrete, such as the ability to cast into virtually any shape or form, allow design liberty and almost infinite variety of applications, low production cost, relatively high compression strength. It is a crucial material widely used in the civil/ infrastructure field; therefore, control of its quality is highly critical.
However, it is not a simple job to check the concrete quality at the joint areas between beams, columns, slabs, and foundation areas backfilled by soil. Furthermore, in various situations, one would like to check the concrete quality in foundation areas after disasters happen, for example, after earthquakes or fires. Monitoring concrete quality in real-time is a significant concern.
The project goal is to develop a smart concrete testing mechanism, based on piezoelectric transduction devices embedded in critical points in a concrete structure at the time of construction. Another attractive feature of the innovation will be its capability to transfer all data to an end-user in real-time through Wi-Fi, 3G/4G signals. Therefore, the user is able to check concrete quality in real-time, anytime, and anywhere, without the requirement of direct access to the construction site area.
About Concrete MRI
Concrete MRI, founded in 2019, is a pioneer for technical innovation in concrete quality monitoring for civil, industrial and infrastructure systems. We create and develop smart, cost-effective, and human power-saving solutions to monitor concrete quality. We imagine and build technology to enable users to monitor concrete quality in real-time anytime, anywhere, without the requirement of direct access to the construction site area.
CEO/Founder: Hoang Nhan Nguyen (Jerome)
Address: Suite 420-744 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC, V6C 1A5, Canada