This paper introduces the state-of-the-art seismic monitoring system implemented for the 1,206-m-long (3,956 ft) cable-stayed Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge in Cape Girardeau (Missouri), a new Mississippi River crossing, approximately 80 km from the epicentral region of the 1811 and 1812 New Madrid earthquakes. The real-time seismic monitoring system for the bridge includes a broadband network consisting of superstructure and free-field arrays and comprises a total of 84 channels of accelerometers deployed on the superstructure (towers and deck), pier foundations (caisson tops and bents), and in the vicinity of the bridge (e.g., free-field, both surface and downhole). The paper also introduces the high-quality response data obtained from the broadband network that otherwise would not have been possible with older instruments. Such data is aimed to be used by the owner, researchers, and engineers to (1) assess the performance of the bridge, (2) check design parameters, including the comparison of dynamic characteristics with actual response, and (3) better design future similar bridges. Preliminary spectral analyses of low-amplitude ambient vibration data and that from a small earthquake reveal specific response characteristics of this new bridge and the free-field in its proximity. There is coherent tower-cable-deck interaction that sometimes results in amplified ambient motions. Also, while the motions at the lowest (triaxial) downhole accelerometers on both Missouri and Illinois sides are practically free from any feedback of motions of the bridge, the motions at the middle downhole and surface accelerometers are influenced significantly even by amplified ambient motions of the bridge.

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