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DEVELOPMENT OF ADVANCED NON CONTACT METHODS FOR NON DESTRUCTIVE DETECTION OF DEFECTS AND DAMAGE IN AERONAUTICAL STRUCTURES

Exploitable results

Thermography and shearography were investigation in 2 main directions: quality control and field inspection. Work was done on defect detectability and diagnostic analysis methods stressing the speed, cost effectiveness and full field characteristics. For these techniques the research project allowed industrial partners to reach a very high degree of skill and to gain benefits on routine production activity flow. Several of the developed systems are new to Europe and more versatile with respect to the commercially available ones. Several of the partners intend to use shearography and thermography as auxiliary and primary inspection tools. Besides the pure nondestructive testing (NDT) field, thermography will be employed to monitor thermal behaviour of aircraft parts as well as to determine thermophysical quantities such as emittance and conductivity. Shearography can be usefully applied for strain analysis and vibration test evaluation.
An optical interferometric system has been developed that measures changes in the position or density of an object utilizing the phase of the light that is reflected at or transmitted by the investigated object. With this system qualities like shape, refractive index, strain, mass density, deformation and surface roughness can be determined with a high accuracy. Furthermore, the developed system can be applied to detect defects in, for example, composite materials. The system is capable of performing 25 measurements per second, which is at least 3 times as fast as conventional systems. Because of this speed, our system is less sensitive to external disturbances like air flow, temperature changes and vibrations and can therefore be applied in industrial environments. Furthermore, the developed system can be utilized to monitor time dependent processes and fast vibrating objects.