Modern multibeam sonar and laser inspection

VRT inspected the bridge structures and the riverbed topography of Stone Bridge, an important medieval emblem for Regensburg, in Germany. The underwater bridge structures and the riverbed were inspected with multibeam sonar scan and the vertical walls of the bridge pillars as well as the shore areas with laser scan.

For the City of Regensburg, it was important to be aware of the condition of the underwater structures and the riverbed shapes to maintain the usability of the bridge. By using the combination of a multibeam sonar and a laser, VRT’s field team was able to cover the whole survey area and extensively collect data, which was then processed and interpreted by VRT to report to City of Regensburg whether there are any sinkholes, erosion or other damage below the water surface. VRT’s technology helped the City of Regensburg to inspect the underwater pillar surfaces, which are usually out of reach of divers due to high flow velocities.

Extending life-cycle of underwater structures

With VRT’s inspections, City of Regensburg can extend the life-cycle of the Stone Bridge by verifying the possible repair and maintenance needs of the bridge’s sheet pile walls and pillars as well as the riverbed conditions. The structures were inspected for possible signs of scouring or erosion, to which the City of Regensburg could react proactively if necessary.

The survey results are used for predictive maintenance and asset management of underwater structures. The detailed 3D data provides important baseline information for future surveys, as it can be used for change comparisons with later datasets.


We regularly examine the area of foundations at river bridges to determine if there are any sinkholes or other damage below the water surface. Our cooperation with VRT aims for long-term monitoring as the 3D data is saved to compare the possible structural changes with future surveys

Gregor Walter, Construction Manager & Head of Bridge Construction Department, City of Regensburg

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