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Comparison of Cooled and Uncooled IR Sensors by Means of Signal-to-Noise Ratio for NDT Diagnostics of Aerospace Grade Composites

1
School of Aerospace, Transport and Manufacturing, Cranfield University, Cranfield MK43 0AL, UK
2
Computer Vision and Systems Laboratory (CVSL), Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Laval University, Quebec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering and Aeronautics, City University of London, London EC1V 0HB, UK
4
Mapair Thermography Ltd., Melbourn, South Cambridgeshire SG8, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2020, 20(12), 3381; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123381
Received: 8 April 2020 / Revised: 22 May 2020 / Accepted: 28 May 2020 / Published: 15 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sensors for NDT Diagnostics and Health Monitoring)
This work aims to address the effectiveness and challenges of non-destructive testing (NDT) by active infrared thermography (IRT) for the inspection of aerospace-grade composite samples and seeks to compare uncooled and cooled thermal cameras using the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) as a performance parameter. It focuses on locating impact damages and optimising the results using several signal processing techniques. The work successfully compares both types of cameras using seven different SNR definitions, to understand if a lower-resolution uncooled IR camera can achieve an acceptable NDT standard. Due to most uncooled cameras being small, lightweight, and cheap, they are more accessible to use on an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The concept of using a UAV for NDT on a composite wing is explored, and the UAV is also tracked using a localisation system to observe the exact movement in millimetres and how it affects the thermal data. It was observed that an NDT UAV can access difficult areas and, therefore, can be suggested for significant reduction of time and cost. View Full-Text
Keywords: active infrared thermography; pulsed thermography; signal-to-noise ratio (SNR); UAV; aircraft-grade composites active infrared thermography; pulsed thermography; signal-to-noise ratio (SNR); UAV; aircraft-grade composites
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MDPI and ACS Style

Deane, S.; Avdelidis, N.P.; Ibarra-Castanedo, C.; Zhang, H.; Nezhad, H.Y.; Williamson, A.A.; Mackley, T.; Maldague, X.; Tsourdos, A.; Nooralishahi, P. Comparison of Cooled and Uncooled IR Sensors by Means of Signal-to-Noise Ratio for NDT Diagnostics of Aerospace Grade Composites. Sensors 2020, 20, 3381. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123381

AMA Style

Deane S, Avdelidis NP, Ibarra-Castanedo C, Zhang H, Nezhad HY, Williamson AA, Mackley T, Maldague X, Tsourdos A, Nooralishahi P. Comparison of Cooled and Uncooled IR Sensors by Means of Signal-to-Noise Ratio for NDT Diagnostics of Aerospace Grade Composites. Sensors. 2020; 20(12):3381. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123381

Chicago/Turabian Style

Deane, Shakeb, Nicolas P. Avdelidis, Clemente Ibarra-Castanedo, Hai Zhang, Hamed Y. Nezhad, Alex A. Williamson, Tim Mackley, Xavier Maldague, Antonios Tsourdos, and Parham Nooralishahi. 2020. "Comparison of Cooled and Uncooled IR Sensors by Means of Signal-to-Noise Ratio for NDT Diagnostics of Aerospace Grade Composites" Sensors 20, no. 12: 3381. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123381

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