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Proceedings Paper

Squeezing light out of crystals: triboluminescent sensors
Author(s): Ian Sage; Rodney Alan Badcock; Lisa Humberstone; Norman Geddes; Martin Kemp; Sharon Bishop; Grant Bourhill
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Paper Abstract

Currently, there are no simple sensing techniques for determining in real-time both the severity and location of structural damage in a composite caused by a dynamic impact event. Materials are known which emit light when they are fractured. This fracture-induced light emissions is known as triboluminescence. A triboluminescent material embedded in, or attached on, a composite structure could act as a real- time damage sensor. The occurrence and severity of the damage is given by the intensity of the resulting triboluminescent light. Since the triboluminescent light emission is fracture-initiated, no signal would be generated by a triboluminescent sensor until damage had actually occurred. Hence no false alarms are generated by this type of sensor. An array of triboluminescent sensors may allow real-time damage location monitoring simply by determining the wavelength of the emitted light. We have developed a series of highly efficient triboluminescent materials with sufficient thermal and chemical properties to allow doping into composites. We report a series of proof-of-principle experiments with these materials which strongly support the potential of triboluminescent sensors to monitor in real- time both the magnitude and location of structural damage.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 July 1999
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 3675, Smart Structures and Materials 1999: Smart Materials Technologies, (12 July 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.352790
Show Author Affiliations
Ian Sage, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Malvern (United Kingdom)
Rodney Alan Badcock, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Farnborough (United Kingdom)
Lisa Humberstone, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Farnborough (United Kingdom)
Norman Geddes, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Malvern (United Kingdom)
Martin Kemp, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Farnborough (United Kingdom)
Sharon Bishop, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Farnborough (United Kingdom)
Grant Bourhill, Defence Evaluation and Research Agency Malvern (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3675:
Smart Structures and Materials 1999: Smart Materials Technologies
Manfred R. Wuttig, Editor(s)

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