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The Alveo Vecchio project was developed upon request and under the supervision of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility (MIMS). In particular, on 24 April 2019 the Mims, Autostrade per l'Italia (ASPI), and the Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering of the University of Trento (UniTN) finalized a Framework Agreement for cooperation in the field of management and monitoring of civil infrastructure, with the aim of developing investigation protocols and monitoring systems to assess the safety and performance of existing road bridges. This Framework Agreement was subsequently updated on 7 June 2020.

The research agreement foresees an extensive experimental activity aimed at validating under real conditions the feasibility and effectiveness of the methods for assessing the safety status of existing bridges, including static and dynamic load tests, non-destructive testing for material characterization, and defect identification.

As part of this experimental activity was set up the field safety infrastructure in the municipality of Candela (FG) at the viaduct Alveo Vecchio, located on the old route of the A16 Naples Canosa. It is a 6-span bridge in simple post-tensive prestressed concrete support, completed in 1968 and decommissioned in 2005 due to a landslide. This testing field is an open-air laboratory where you have the unique opportunity to test the performance of a bridge under real-world conditions of degradation and constraint. As a type of work, the Alveo Vecchio viaduct is representative of 70% of the existing infrastructure assets managed by ASPI. The test results will be the basis for the creation of the protocol for the safety assessment of existing bridges.

Between June and July 2019 ASPI, UniTN and Mims carried out a first test campaign, called Phase 1, in which a load test was carried out to break an entire scaffold, with the aim of evaluating the effective load-bearing capacity of an isostatic span under real conditions, considering the state of actual degradation and representative of a work built in the sixties and subject to routine maintenance.

Based on the results of the first test campaign, ASPI, UniTN, and Mims agreed to carry out a second survey campaign at the test camp, called Phase 2, with the aim of collecting additional information to complete the activities of the first campaign and to verify the metrological effectiveness of different non-destructive tests and monitoring methods in accordance with the UNI/TR 11634:2016 recommendations.

The scientific activities of the second test campaign are carried out by a consortium of Universities, coordinated by the University of Trento (UniTN); in particular, there are the following Research Units: the Polytechnic University of Marche (UniPM)the University of Naples Federico II (UniNa), the Sapienza University of Rome (UniRoma1), the Università degli Studi Roma Tre (UniRoma3), the Università degli Studi G. d'Annunzio di Chieti e Pescara (UniCh) and the Politecnico di Torino (PoliTo).