New for UCT 2020: Hands-On Assessment Zone Highlights Modern Methods, Technologies

New for UCT 2020

Hands-On Assessment Zone Highlights Modern Methods, Technologies

Another unique, interactive education and demonstration zone has been added to the Underground Construction Technology International Conference & Exhibition scheduled Jan. 28 -30, 2020, at the Fort Worth Convention Center, Fort Worth, Texas. 

The Assessment Zone will be a large area within the UCT exhibit hall where attendees can see and learn about equipment and technologies available to assess the structural integrity of utility pipes and avoid catastrophic failure. The Assessment Zone is co-sponsored and organized by the North Texas Chapter of the Underground Construction Technology Association (NT-UCTA).

The Assessment Zone is the brainchild of NT-UCTA board of director members Adam McKnight., Upper Trinity Regional Water District; Justin Reeves, Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam Inc.; and Matt Penk, City of Dallas Water Utilities.

McKnight said the rapid changes in how technology is evolving combined with the drastic needs for managing critical assets led to the idea for the Assessment Zone.

“In the past two decades, technology has evolved quickly,” McKnight observed. “Technological innovations are evolving into solutions that identify defects in pipelines and other underground infrastructure.

“These high-tech solutions are difficult to keep up with. The Assessment Zone is a hands-on area designed to showcase these solutions in an interactive display. People will be able to see, touch and feel the equipment that is used to assess critical infrastructure.”

Education goals

The learning objective of the Assessment Zone will be to aid utilities in managing risks, avoiding emergencies and planning for the future. “Assessment Zone exhibitors have committed to bringing the equipment and technologies to the conference so attendees can see how it is used and to learn about its applications” McKnight pointed out.

Equipment and technologies featured within the Assessment Zone will include:

  • Data collection
  • Leak detection
  • Laser profiling
  • CCTV
  • Sonar
  • Smart ball
  • Cameras
  • And much more

McKnight stressed the value of asset management. “We have entered into the ‘era of infrastructure replacement and rehabilitation.’  AWWA’s Buried No Longer publication identifies aging infrastructure as a trillion-dollar problem. Millions of miles of underground infrastructure has reached the end of its useful life and will need to be rehabilitated or replaced.

“Asset management uses techniques and tools to manage this massive replacement/rehabilitation cost,” he continued. “The traditional approach of completely replacing assets at the end of their useful life isn’t practical or cost-efficient. Assessments help utilities identify problem areas of damaged infrastructure for rehabilitation or replacement while maintaining the areas that are in good condition.

“The Assessment Zone is designed to educate people and demonstrate how technology is being used to identify issues and solve problems facing the underground infrastructure industry. With a better understanding of the tools and technologies available, utility owners, engineers and contractors can apply them to their own operations They should understand what tools and technologies are available to help identify problems in underground infrastructure and develop cost effective solutions,” McKnight said.

For more information or to participate in the Assessment Zone, contact: Adam McKnight,; Justin Reeves,; or Matt Penk,

To learn more and register for UCT, go to or contact or

Related News

From Archive


{{ error }}
{{ comment.comment.Name }} • {{ comment.timeAgo }}
{{ comment.comment.Text }}