Structural Health Monitoring of Civil Infrastructure Systems by using Guided Ultrasonic Waves

date March 11, 2016
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Friday, March 11, 2016 4:00 p.m. in ETC 4.150

Professor Salvatore Salamone
Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin
http://caee.utexas.edu

The increase in traffic volume and loads applied to aging and deteriorating infrastructure systems, and the desire to reduce downtime associated with regular maintenance operations have all sparked interest and research into structural health monitoring (SHM) methods. Such research is fueled by the evolution of the maintenance paradigm from “time-based” to “condition-based”, which implies that a sensing and processing system, integrated with the structure, notifies the operator in real-time that degradation is occurring. While a wide variety of SHM methods have been proposed, in this presentation recent developments in state-of-the-art ultrasonic wave-based methods will be presented. The advantages of these methods include: (1) the use of low profile sensors that can be permanently attached to the structure to perform real-time monitoring and routine inspection with the same sensing system, (2) the ability to probe a large area of the structure, locating damage from only a few monitoring points and (3) the capability to detect both active cracks and pre-existing cracks by toggling between the modes of “passive” acoustic emission testing and “active” ultrasonic testing. The presentation will discuss research issues and challenges, along with some examples of research being undertaken in the Smart Structures Research Group at UT.