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Characterisation of CFRP through enhanced ultrasonic testing methods

: Helfen, Thomas Benedikt; Sridaran Venkat, Ramanan; Rabe, Ute; Hirsekorn, Sigrun; Boller, Christian


Applied composite materials 19 (2012), Nr.6, S.913-919
ISSN: 0929-189X
ISSN: 1573-4897
Fraunhofer IZFP ()
nondestructive testing (NDT); CFRP; Nonlinear ultrasound; Sampling Phased Array (SPA)

Carbon fibre reinforced composite materials enjoy an increasing field of application in the aeronautical environment and are due to expand into the automotive and leisure sectors in due course. Those materials need to be qualified at reasonable cost and with considerable experience, where ultrasonic testing has become the procedure of primary choice for nondestructive testing (NDT) so far. However, the two-phase anisotropic structure of a composite material implies a variety of challenges such as scattering, beam skewing, and sound field distortion complicating the localization, sizing, and characterization of defects. Besides qualification during the manufacturing stage, additional tasks emerge once the composite material ages, maybe by mechanical fatigue, chemical ageing, or irradiation. Again characterisation of the material based on ultrasonics would allow comparisons to be made along a material's life cycle. The knowledge generated could be used for in-situ monitor ing procedures such as considered in the context of structural health monitoring (SHM).