Damage Characterisation in Composite Laminates using Vibro-Acoustic Technique
Andersen , Kristian Gjerrestad
Ismail, Sikiru O.
Chen, Yong Kang
Dhakal, Hom Nath
The need to characterise in-service damage in composite structures is increasingly becoming important as composites find higher utilisation in wind turbines, aerospace, automotive, marine, among others. This paper investigates the feasibility of simplifying the conventional acousto-ultrasonic technique setup for quick and economic one-sided in-service inspection of composite structures. Acousto-ultrasonic technique refers to the approach of using ultrasonic transducer for local excitation while sensing the material response with an acoustic emission sensor. However, this involves transducers with several auxiliaries. The approach proposed herewith, referred to as vibro-acoustic testing, involves a low level of vibration impact excitation and acoustic emission sensing for damage characterisation. To test the robustness of this approach, first, a quasi-static test was carried out to impute low-velocity impact damage on three groups of test samples with different ply stacking sequences. Next, the vibro-acoustic testing was performed on all test samples with the acoustic emission response for the samples acquired. Using the acoustic emission test sample response for all groups, the stress wave factor was determined using the peak voltage stress wave factor method. The stress wave factor results showed an inverse correlation between the level of impact damage and stress wave factor across all the test sample groups. This corresponds with what has been reported in literature for acousto-ultrasonic technique; thus demonstrating the robustness of the proposed vibro-acoustic set-up.