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Proceedings Paper

Development of a structurally compatible sensor element
Author(s): Shawn M. Walsh; John Charles Butler; John H. Belk; Robert A. Lawler
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Paper Abstract

The increased use of polymer adhesives and polymer-based composites in primary structural applications has stimulated the need for a minimally invasive, structurally compatible means for assessing the in-situ health of these materials during the service life of the structure or component. While there are several approaches, the present research has implicitly included structural compatibility as a constraint in the design, fabrication, and installation of such embedded 'structural health' monitoring sensors. A non-contact method of extracting information from the embedded sensors has also been developed, and a working prototype has been devised. The issues associated with manufacturing stable, minimally invasive sensors will be presented, together with a series of potential applications including rotary wing systems such as the Comanche and ground vehicles such as the Crusader and the Future Combat Systems. The advantages of the proposed embedded sensor concept include low cost, ease of installation, unitized construction, compatibility with the host polymer matrix, and a wireless means of retrieving data from the embedded sensor element. The need for an embedded power source has also been eliminated, allowing the sensors to assume a low profile and dimensional stability.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 July 2001
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 4335, Advanced Nondestructive Evaluation for Structural and Biological Health Monitoring, (24 July 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.434202
Show Author Affiliations
Shawn M. Walsh, Army Research Lab. (United States)
John Charles Butler, American Competitiveness Institute (United States)
John H. Belk, Boeing Phantom Works (United States)
Robert A. Lawler, American Competitiveness Institute (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4335:
Advanced Nondestructive Evaluation for Structural and Biological Health Monitoring
Tribikram Kundu, Editor(s)

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