Title: The application of the Hilbert-Huang transform to the analysis of inertial profiles of pavements

Authors: Nicolas Gagarin, Norden E. Huang, Morton S. Oskard, Dennis G. Sixbey, James R. Mekemson

Addresses: Starodub, Inc., 3504 Littledale Road, Kensington, MD 20895, USA. ' NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Oceans and Ice Branch, Code 971.0, Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA. ' Federal Highway Administration, Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101, USA. ' Federal Highway Administration, Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101, USA. ' Consultant to Starodub, Inc., 12224 John Avenue, Manassas, VA 20112-3548, USA

Abstract: Inertial road profile measurements are widely used to assess the condition of existing pavements and monitor the quality control for smoothness of newly constructed pavements. A metric known as the International Roughness Index (IRI), computed from the inertial road profile, quantifies the ride quality of the pavement. Within the inertial road profile, the variation of frequency-amplitude content versus distance is nonlinear and nonstationary. The HilbertHuang transform (HHT) and its Empirical Mode Decomposition (EMD) is well suited for nonlinear and nonstationary data. In the application of the HHT to inertial profile analysis, the intrinsic mode functions and their Hilbert transform can be used to: 1) represent the frequency/wavelength content of a profile; 2) filter the data in the distance domain in preparation for secondary analyses, and 3) compare two profiles and assess their similarities by performing simultaneous distance frequency synchronisation.

Keywords: cross-correlation; EMD; empirical mode decomposition; HHT; Hilbert-Huang transforms; inertial profiles; pavements; nonlinear; nonstationary filter; surface feature pattern recognition; inertial road profile measurements; quality control; pavement smoothness; international roughness index; ride quality.

DOI: 10.1504/IJVD.2004.005361

International Journal of Vehicle Design, 2004 Vol.36 No.2/3, pp.287 - 301

Published online: 28 Sep 2004 *

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