SOFIA project : Bridges monitoring with Artificial intelligence

Cementys monitoring SOFIA IA surveillance des ouvrages d'art

SOFIA project : Bridges monitoring with Artificial Intelligence

Thurdsay may 27th 2021

“Ponts connectés” call for projects

Global ageing of French bridges network was outlined in a Senate’s report published in June 2019. In an effort to address this issue, the “Ponts connectés” (connected bridges) call for projects was launched by CEREMA. Winners were announced by transportation minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari on April 23rd 2021. 

Logo CEREMA bridges monitoring

Socotec’s project SOFIA (Surveillance des Ouvrages d’art Fondée sur l’Intelligence Artificielle) was chosen by the jury.


As part of the call for projects, Socotec has partnered with Machine Learning & Computer Vision experts from CEA List. SANEF and Jura departmental council are also part of the consortium. Socotec is represented by two of its entities: Socotec Infrastructure which is the representative of the consortium ; Cementys which provides a team of data scientists and civil engineers, experts in bridges monitoring.

Problems & Objectives

Usually, states of bridges are estimated after an inspection visit following IQOA regulation. The main limitation of this technique is its lack of accuracy. Indeed, high variability in ratings among inspectors was highlighted in several research papers. In order to tackle this issue, SOFIA offers to help inspectors by providing a decision aid module allowing to:

  • detect and characterize defects appearing in pictures taken by inspectors ;
  • estimate the state of inspected bridges’ elements.
Cementys Socotec Sofia

The decision aid module will be built based on Computer Vision and Artificial Intelligence techniques. Then, it will be incorporated in LISA (Lifelong Infrastructure Software & Analysis). LISA is Socotec Infrastructure’s mobile app designed to manage inspection visits.

End product

SOFIA helps inspectors to recognize photographed elements, localize defects and estimate ratings. Every action made by SOFIA must be validated or rejected by hand.

Thus, the module is made to help inspectors, not replace them.

Cementys process monitoring Machine Learning


Cementys, Socotec Infrastructure and CEA List’s teams will be working on product development for the next two years.

The end product will be tested by inspectors on Jura departmental council’s bridges in the summer of 2023.