Nowadays, engineers are widely using accelerometers to record the vibration of structures for structural verification purposes. The main obstacle for using these data acquisition systems is their high cost, which limits its use to unique structures with a relatively high structural health monitoring budget. In this paper, a Cost Hyper-Efficient Arduino Product (CHEAP) has been developed to accurately measure structural accelerations. CHEAP is a system that is composed of five low-cost accelerometers that are connected to an Arduino microcontroller as their data acquisition system. Test results show that CHEAP not only has a significantly lower price (14 times cheaper in the worst-case scenario) compared with other systems used for comparison but also shows better accuracy on low frequencies for low acceleration amplitudes. Moreover, the final output results of Fast Fourier Transformation (FFT) assessments showed a better observable resolution for CHEAP than the studied control systems.
Keywords: Internet of Things (IoT); accelerometer; arduino; low-cost sensors; structural health monitoring (SHM).