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Proceedings Paper

Infra-through-ultrasonic cleaning of microanemometer and acoustic vector sensing elements
Author(s): Scott E. Cravens; Ronald M. Barrett
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Paper Abstract

Sensor elements employing fine filaments are often vulnerable to particulate fouling when used in certain operational field conditions. Depending on the size, attraction level, thermal and electrical conduction and charge accumulation properties of the particles, erroneous readings can be easily generated in such "dirty" environments. This paper describes the design, development and testing of an ultrasonic system which dynamically rejects highly tenacious electrostatically charged particles of a wide variety of sizes and even water. The paper starts with a brief introduction to the field of acoustic vector sensing, outlining its outstanding characteristics and history. Operational challenges including a statistical analysis of typical Middle-Eastern wind-blown desert sand and charge density are laid out. Several representative subscale hot-wire filaments were fouled with calibrated dust representing desert sand. The fouled elements were then exposed to airflows of 13 ft/s (4m/s) and showed highly erratic, shifted conduction levels with respect to baseline (clean) levels. An ultrasonic cleaning system was designed specifically resonate the filament and cantilever so as to mechanically reject foulants. When operated at resonance, the ultrasonic cleaning system showed 98.6% particulate rejection levels and associated restoration of uncorrupted filament resistance levels to within 2% of baseline resistance measurements. The study concludes with an assessment of such cleaning techniques in various environments.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 April 2010
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 7643, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2010, 76432X (12 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.847464
Show Author Affiliations
Scott E. Cravens, The Univ. of Kansas (United States)
Ronald M. Barrett, The Univ. of Kansas (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7643:
Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2010
Mehrdad N. Ghasemi-Nejhad, Editor(s)

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