Detection of Impact Damage in Carbon Fibre Composites Using and Electromagnetic Sensor

Zhen Liu, Arthur D. Haigh, Mohamed Nasr Saleh, Edward McCarthy, Constantinos Soutis, Andrew A.P. Gibson, Robin Sloan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This paper presents a comprehensive experimental study of impact damage
detection for carbon fibre-reinforced polymer (CFRP) composites using an
electromagnetic (EM) sensor with coupled spiral inductors (CSI). Two
representative types of damage are detected and evaluated, i.e., barely visible
impact damage (BVID) and delamination. A multi-frequency inspection is
performed, where the resultant images indicate the potential of the CSI sensor in
the characterisation of damage extent. The accuracy and efficiency of the CSI
sensor are compared with the open-ended waveguide imaging, near-field
microwave microscopy, microwave time-domain reflectometry, the
complementary split-ring resonator and ultrasonic scanning. Applications and
limitations of these non-destructive testing (NDT) methods for identifying impact damage are discussed. There is a free edge effect on the electromagnetic signal, which is illustrated for the first time with the proposed EM technique. Detection of the air gap produced by inserting a thin piece into a machined subsurface groove is carried out. It is found that the developed CSI sensor is able to accurately resolve the location and extent of the air gap. The experimental results demonstrate that the sensor could offer an alternative relatively low cost method that can be fully automated for structural monitoring of aircraft and other composite structures.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
JournalResearch in Nondestructive Evaluation
Early online date9 Dec 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Dec 2016

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • non destructive evaluation
  • impact damage
  • composite materials
  • electromagnetic sensors
  • sensors
  • Carbon fibre


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