EngD student, 2012 intake
Research: Guided wave structural health monitoring on complex aerospace components
Sponsoring company: Airbus Ltd
Background: Undergraduate Masters in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bristol graduating in 2012. My final year project involved developing techniques to use electromagnetic acoustic transducers upon semi and non-conducting materials and was my introduction to NDE.
My research involves studying the challenges of applying ultrasonic Guided Wave Structural Health Monitoring (GWSHM) to real aircraft structures. The work is relevant to both active GWSHM, where the transducers are excited to produce ultrasonic waves within the structure, and Acoustic Emission (AE), where the transducers detect ultrasonic waves generated by damage growth when the structure is under stress.
One research area has been the long term performance of GWSHM systems. Typically the ultrasonic signals collected change over long periods of time due to ageing of components within the system. This negatively affects system performance. A long term experiment is being conducted to aid understanding of these changes, to assess whether current temperature compensation techniques can mitigate their effects and to develop new techniques to compensate for ageing.
My other major research area is modelling of GWSHM systems, particularly with respect to ultrasonic wave propagation within the complex structures typical of aircraft. The impact of this is often not directly considered in the design of industrial GWSHM systems yet can have a significant effect on the detectability of defects. The aim of this work is to enable forward modelling of complete GWSHM systems to aid understanding of previous AE tests and to inform future system design.