Infrasense Performs Non-Destructive Investigation of Pavement via Ground Penetrating Radar in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Infrasense recently completed a ground penetrating radar (GPR) survey of a road in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. The objective of analyzing this road was to evaluate the pavement structure condition by looking at layer thicknesses, and areas of potential moisture infiltration.

This August, Infrasense performed both a ground-coupled and air-launched GPR survey along the 2.4 miles of a roadway in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The thickness survey was carried out during early morning hours with minimal disruption to the park’s road traffic. The ground coupled survey implemented a 400-MHz antenna capable of penetrating to a depth of approximately 12 feet below the surface of the roadway. This was used to search for buried objects and deeper anomalies such as metal plates predicted to be about 10 feet below the surface. The air-launched survey implemented a 1 GHz antenna that shows more clarity at the 2 to 3-foot depth range. All data collection and recording were controlled by the SIR-30 GPR system manufactured by GSSI, Inc. of Nashua, NH. Four lateral offsets were scanned in each lane down the length of the 2.4-mile road.

The use of two different Ground Penetrating Radar technologies gave Infrasense engineers a more well-rounded picture of the sub-surface strata along the road. The results included tabular layer thickness results reported at 5’ intervals, specific locations that showed evidence of stripping and moisture, and deep buried objects.

About Infrasense, Inc. 
Since 1987, Infrasense, Inc. has applied advanced technologies to address the most difficult challenges in subsurface scanning. Infrasense’s engineers nondestructively extract critical information from a diverse range of structures. In addition to providing ongoing subsurface evaluation services to clients across the country, the firm has also conducted numerous research programs to advance the field of subsurface detection and nondestructive evaluation. To learn more about Infrasense and the services we provide, visit our website:

Survey Vehicle Setup with 1GHz (right) and 400 MHz antenna (left)

a ground penetrating radar (GPR) survey of a road in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee