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Structural Health Monitoring (SHM)


April 18th 2017

CATEC is a specialist in this technology and has developed some solutions and tools for its implementation in service in aerospace industry


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SHM is a set of techniques aimed to minoring the health of structures during their useful life. This monitoring detects some changes in the material or in the geometric conditions of the system that may negatively affect their qualities.

This process is organized in four levels:

1) Determination the presence of damages in the structure.
(2) Geometric location of the damage.
(3) Quantification of the intensity.
(4) Prediction of the remaining life of the analyzed element.

In order to perform all these actions it is required a network of sensors distributed on the structure under examination and connected to a central system that provides real-time information on the state of the component, such as fiber optic technology and FBG sensors.

The FBG (Fiber Bragg Grating) sensors basically consist of a "marking" that is included directly on the lines of optical fiber (marked of Bragg). The behavior of the Bragg sensors is analogous to that of a filter, that is, it reflects a certain wavelength of light that illuminates the optical fiber and lets the rest pass. By changing the wavelength reflected by the sensor it is possible to determine the deformation state to which the structure is subjected. In addition, the same fiber optic line can contain up to about 40-60 sensors, drastically reducing the number of lines to be used to monitor various points on the structure.

CATEC is a specialist in this technology and has developed some solutions and tools for its implementation in service. The technology is available for both the sensing and monitoring of various structures and for the monitoring of structural tests.

Sources: CATEC (FERNANDEZ R., GUTIERREZ N., JIMENEZ H., MARTIN F., RUBIO L., JIMENEZ-VICARIA J., PAULOTTO C., LASAGNI F.: On the Structural Testing Monitoring of CFRP cockpit and concrete/CFRP pillar by FBG sensors, Advanced Engineering Materials, Volume 18, Issue 7, 1289-1298, 2016.)

For more information about this technology, you can contact to Materials & Processes: materiales@catec.aero




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