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Proceedings Paper

Precise AE source location technology for the aerospace industry
Author(s): Maochen Ge; Gangbing Song
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Paper Abstract

The application of the acoustic emission (AE) technique has been severely limited during the past several decades due to the difficulties of source location on general shell structures. Two major obstacles are the lack of search algorithms on shell structures, where wave paths are guided by structure shapes, and the lack of the ability to process AE data for meaningful source location. This paper discusses a systematical approach for precise source location on shell structures. The approach not only provides the satisfactory answers to these two problems but also addresses the issue how a precise source location techniques can be used on a daily and routine basis. The approach has been applied to two important studies: analysis of AE data from a rocket motor case and AE monitoring of a railroad tank car. The success in both applications is remarkable. In the case of the railroad tank car where 12 sensors were used, the typical error margin is only 50-150 mm with the best accuracy of 10 mm for a set of data. In viewing of the consistently of the high performance of this approach as demonstrated in both cases as well as the fact that these studies were carried out under the normal industrial monitoring conditions, including structure size, sensor array arrangement and data gathering procedure, we believe that the approach is reliable, technically and economically feasible and ready for general industrial applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 January 1999
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 3586, Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, and Aerospace Hardware III, (28 January 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.339904
Show Author Affiliations
Maochen Ge, GE Acoustics Technology (Canada)
Gangbing Song, Univ. of Akron (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3586:
Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, and Aerospace Hardware III
Ajit K. Mal, Editor(s)

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