This work aims to compare quantitatively different nondestructive testing (NDT) techniques and data fusion features for the evaluation of adhesive bonding quality. Adhesively bonded composite-epoxy single-lap joints have been investigated with advanced ultrasonic nondestructive testing and induction thermography. Bonded structures with artificial debonding defects in three different case studies have been investigated: debonding with release film inclusion, debonding with brass film-large, debonding with brass film-small. After completing preprocessing of the data for data fusion, the feature matrices, depending on the interface reflection peak-to-peak amplitude and the principal component analysis, have been extracted from ultrasonic and thermography inspection results, respectively. The obtained feature matrices have been used as the source in basic (average, difference, weighted average, Hadamard product) and statistical (Dempster–Shafer rule of combination) data fusion algorithms. The defect detection performances of advanced nondestructive testing techniques, in addition to data fusion algorithms have been evaluated quantitatively by receiver operating characteristics. In conclusion, it is shown that data fusion can increase the detectability of artificial debonding in single-lap joints.
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