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Sensors 2017, 17(12), 2796; https://doi.org/10.3390/s17122796

Characterization of Ultrasound Energy Diffusion Due to Small-Size Damage on an Aluminum Plate Using Piezoceramic Transducers

1
Key Laboratory for Metallurgical Equipment and Control of Ministry of Education, Wuhan University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430081, China
2
Key Laboratory of Earthquake Geodesy, Institute of Seismology, China Earthquake Administration, Wuhan 430071, China
3
Hubei Key Laboratory of Mechanical Transmission and Manufacturing Engineering, Wuhan University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430081, China
4
Smart Materials and Structures Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston, Houston, TX 77204, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 October 2017 / Revised: 27 November 2017 / Accepted: 30 November 2017 / Published: 4 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
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Abstract

During the propagation of ultrasonic waves in structures, there is usually energy loss due to ultrasound energy diffusion and dissipation. The aim of this research is to characterize the ultrasound energy diffusion that occurs due to small-size damage on an aluminum plate using piezoceramic transducers, for the future purpose of developing a damage detection algorithm. The ultrasonic energy diffusion coefficient is related to the damage distributed in the medium. Meanwhile, the ultrasonic energy dissipation coefficient is related to the inhomogeneity of the medium. Both are usually employed to describe the characteristics of ultrasound energy diffusion. The existence of multimodes of Lamb waves in metallic plate structures results in the asynchronous energy transport of different modes. The mode of Lamb waves has a great influence on ultrasound energy diffusion as a result, and thus has to be chosen appropriately. In order to study the characteristics of ultrasound energy diffusion in metallic plate structures, an experimental setup of an aluminum plate with a through-hole, whose diameter varies from 0.6 mm to 1.2 mm, is used as the test specimen with the help of piezoceramic transducers. The experimental results of two categories of damages at different locations reveal that the existence of damage changes the energy transport between the actuator and the sensor. Also, when there is only one dominate mode of Lamb wave excited in the structure, the ultrasound energy diffusion coefficient decreases approximately linearly with the diameter of the simulated damage. Meanwhile, the ultrasonic energy dissipation coefficient increases approximately linearly with the diameter of the simulated damage. However, when two or more modes of Lamb waves are excited, due to the existence of different group velocities between the different modes, the energy transport of the different modes is asynchronous, and the ultrasonic energy diffusion is not strictly linear with the size of the damage. Therefore, it is recommended that only one dominant mode of Lamb wave should be excited during the characterization process, in order to ensure that the linear relationship between the damage size and the characteristic parameters is maintained. In addition, the findings from this paper demonstrate the potential of developing future damage detection algorithms using the linear relationships between damage size and the ultrasound energy diffusion coefficient or ultrasonic energy dissipation coefficient when a single dominant mode is excited. View Full-Text
Keywords: piezoceramic transducers; ultrasound energy diffusion; small size damage; Lamb waves; damage detection; structural health monitoring piezoceramic transducers; ultrasound energy diffusion; small size damage; Lamb waves; damage detection; structural health monitoring
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Lu, G.; Feng, Q.; Li, Y.; Wang, H.; Song, G. Characterization of Ultrasound Energy Diffusion Due to Small-Size Damage on an Aluminum Plate Using Piezoceramic Transducers. Sensors 2017, 17, 2796.

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