Localization of a “Synthetic” Acoustic Emission Source on the Surface of a Fatigue Specimen Academic Article uri icon


  • The finite geometry of a laboratory specimen influences a measured acoustic emission waveform because of reflections, transmission, and mode conversion at the interface and boundaries of the specimen, thus making it difficult to determine the location of an acoustic emission (AE) source. The objective of this investigation is to develop a model experiment to identifiy the exact source location on the surface using “synthetic” AE signals. The AE event is generated by a short local thermal expansion. This expansion is produced by the absorption of a short laser pulse which provides a noncontact and broad-band generation of elastic waves. The signals are detected by a noncontact, broad-band, and high-fidelity sensor: a laser interferometer. The triangulation with several detectors is replaced by a single probe laser interferometer located at different coordinates under reproducible conditions. The recorded signals are analyzed by wavelet transform in order to determine the arrival times of waves for several frequency levels. These arrival times are used to quantify the location of the AE source in the surface as well as the velocity of the most dominant feature, the Rayleigh wave, and the time lag between the instant of the AE and the recording of the signal. The accuracy of the method is demonstrated by comparing the identified source location with the exact one. © 2001 Springer-Verlag New York Inc.

author list (cited authors)

  • Gaul, L., Hurlebaus, S., & Jacobs, L. J.

citation count

  • 18

publication date

  • June 2001