Deformation Monitoring

Surveyors realize the important role deformation monitoring plays when evaluating structural integrity in a variety of situations. Whether it’s assessing the later life of an aging building or measuring the ground deformation around a railroad or bridge, the consequences of inaccurate or inconsistent survey measurements can lead to potentially far-reaching consequences. 

When it comes to deteriorating infrastructure, applied loads and other stresses can lead to significant deformation over time that pose real dangers to those around them.


Fortunately, deformation monitoring can reveal these steady distortions in shape by measuring precisely in what way a structure is shifting and how rapidly that particular area is being misshapen.


These types of monitoring surveys are increasingly being utilized to carefully measure and track the stability of older infrastructures and those under constant duress from applied loads and other external stresses.


In addition to age and stress, structural deformation can also be the result of geological shifts, which in turn, create instability in the structures built nearby.


When is deformation monitoring used in the field?


There are a number of practical applications that require surveyors to measure and track movement or changes in shape either within a particular structure or the land around it.


Typically, the types of survey projects that require deformation monitoring fall under one of the following:


Leveling – when slight movements are too small to be obvious without instrumentation.


Stressed Building Sites – construction sites where tasks such as ground compaction might need to be measured. 

Stability Surveys – Both land and structural surveying where deformation can occur in manmade structures or come as a consequence of land movement. 

Other uses for deformation surveying can include measuring the effects of cracks that appear on structures, large floor leveling surveys, and larger industrial measuring tasks.


A Solution For Precise Deformation Surveying


Today, there are a number of techniques used to monitor and survey structural or land-based deformations––yet geodetic systems still provide highly precise measurements that normally don’t require further comparison with other independent measurements.


For surveyors in search of monitoring equipment that can provide extremely accurate results over extended lengths of time while remaining robust and durable, mini prism angle targets offer a sensible, cost-effective solution. 

With unique features like rotating prism components, mini prisms make it possible to use the same survey point from a number of different locations on-site. In addition, several mini prisms can be combined with each other using a timesaving connector system that can be used to secure prisms to one another in close proximity.


This feature allows surveyors to make measurements in different directions while the prism remains in place––a big advantage for those carrying out  the kinds of three-dimensional measurements commonly required when doing deformation monitoring. 

Mini prisms also offer a convenience other systems don’t. They can easily be glued to virtually any stable surface––even glass and marble facades.


The variety of sizes makes it the perfect choice to conduct long-distance, non-invasive deformation projects in especially difficult areas such as railroads and bridges. Together, they provide a sensible solution to an increasingly essential surveying task.


To learn more about Berntsen’s selection of Mini Prism Angle Targets or any other product we carry, contact us and get more information today, or grab our product catalog.


Don't forget to check out our full line of premium survey and monitoring targets here.