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Proceedings Paper

Fiber optics in composite materials: materials with nerves of glass
Author(s): Raymond M. Measures
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Paper Abstract

A Fiber Optic BasedSmart Structure wiipossess a structurally integrated optical microsensor system for determining its state. This built-in sensor system should, in real-time, be able to: evaluate the strain or deformation of a structure, monitor if its vibrating or subject to excessive loads, check its temperature and warn of the appearance of any hot spots. In addition a Smart Structure should maintain a vigilant survelliance over its structural integrity. The successful development of Smart StructureTechnolgy could lead to: aircraft that are safer, lighter, more efficient, easier to maintain and to service; pipelines, pressure vessels and storage tanks that constantly monitor their structuralintegrity and immediately issue an alert ifany problem is detected; space platforms that check forpressure leaks, unwanted vibration, excess thermal buildup, and deviation from some preassigned shape.This technology is particularly appropriate for composite materials where internal damage generated by: impacts, manufacturing flaws, excessive loading or fatigue could be detected and assessed. In service monitoring of structural loads, especially in regions like wing roots of aircraft, could be ofconsiderable benefit in helping to avoid structural overdesign and reduce weight. Structurally imbedded optical fibers sensors might also serve to monitor the cure state of composite thermosets during their fabrication and thereby contribute to improved quality control of these products.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 August 1990
PDF: 16 pages
Proc. SPIE 1267, Fiber Optic Sensors IV, (1 August 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.20311
Show Author Affiliations
Raymond M. Measures, Univ. of Toronto and Ontario Laser and Lightwave Research Ctr. (Canada)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1267:
Fiber Optic Sensors IV
Ralf Th. Kersten, Editor(s)

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