Digital maintenance of railroad bridges

  Copyright: © Hartung

The maintenance of bridge structures in the road and rail transport sector is currently characterized by a reactive, problem-oriented approach. Only when the operator of a structure discovers an inadequacy in one of its structures during the legally prescribed inspections or as a result of an inspection or recalculation, the design of a repair measure take place. Due to the then usually advanced state of damage, these measures are usually expensive, in many cases even a complete replacement construction is necessary. Preventive, long-term monitoring, as already established in many other industrial sectors, enables a reduction in maintenance and repair costs and leads to an increase in operational safety and reliability.

In the DiMaRB project, a digital preventive maintenance concept for railroad bridges will be developed based on the use of Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) and the overall data integration in an as-built model using the BIM method. For this purpose, the shBIM platform will be created on which the results and information of the monitoring system can be universally viewed and displayed in a user-specific manner.

  Copyright: © albert.ing

In the research project, the stakeholders directly involved (asset managers, structure inspectors, BIM designers / users and monitoring specialists) are exploring the necessary methods and processes for a basic concept of digitally supported maintenance of railroad infrastructure in Germany. The methodological approach here is the intelligent linking of inspection and monitoring data with as-built models (shBIM). The maintenance concepts and methods are developed and tested on the basis of monitoring data of existing bridge structures. Finally, the concept for digital maintenance of railroad bridges will be demonstrated on real bridge structures of high-speed railroad traffic.

The project is funded by the research initiative mFUND of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure.

Project partners

  • Leibniz University Hannover
  • Institute for Massive Construction (IfMa), project coordination
  • Institute for Construction Management and Digitalization (ICoM)
  • Marx Krontal Partner (MKP)
  • albert.ing GmbH
  • DB Netz AG
  • Eisenbahn-Bundesamt (EBA)


Contact person

  • Robert Hartung


Duration: until 02/2022