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Sensors 2018, 18(8), 2636; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18082636

Application of Air-Coupled Ultrasonic Arrays for Excitation of a Slow Antisymmetric Lamb Wave

Ultrasound Institute, Kaunas University of Technology, LT-51423 Kaunas, Lithuania
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Received: 12 July 2018 / Revised: 6 August 2018 / Accepted: 8 August 2018 / Published: 11 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intelligent Sensing Technologies for Nondestructive Evaluation 2018)

Abstract

Air-coupled excitation and reception of ultrasonic guided waves is already used for non-destructive testing and evaluation (NDT & E). Usually for air-coupled NDT & E purposes the lowest zero-order antisymmetric Lamb wave mode A0 is used, because it is most sensitive to internal defects and thickness variations. The velocity of the A0 mode is reduced with a reducing frequency and at low frequencies may become slower than the ultrasound velocity in air. Such a wave is named a slow Lamb wave. The objective of this research was the development and investigation of an air-coupled excitation method of the slow zero-order antisymmetric Lamb wave based on application of a piezoceramic ultrasonic array. We have proposed to excite the A0 mode by a planar air-coupled phased array with rectangular elements. The array is matched to the wavelength of the A0 mode in the film. Performance of such an excitation method was investigated both theoretically and experimentally. Two excitation methods of the array were analysed: when all array elements were excited simultaneously or one by one with a proper delay. In order to reduce crosstalk between array elements via the air gap, we have proposed an optimization procedure based on additional shifts of electric excitation impulses of the array elements. For experimental verification of the proposed approach a prototype of the air-coupled eight element array made of Pz-29 piezoceramic strips was manufactured. Experimental validation confirmed the possibility of exciting the slow A0 Lamb wave mode through the air gap in thin plates and films. View Full-Text
Keywords: air-coupled ultrasonic arrays; ultrasonic guided waves; lamb waves; non-destructive testing; evaluation air-coupled ultrasonic arrays; ultrasonic guided waves; lamb waves; non-destructive testing; evaluation
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Kazys, R.J.; Vilpisauskas, A.; Sestoke, J. Application of Air-Coupled Ultrasonic Arrays for Excitation of a Slow Antisymmetric Lamb Wave. Sensors 2018, 18, 2636.

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