Ultrasonic wave propagation in heterogenous media

Laura Cunningham, Anthony Mulholland, G. Harvey, C. Bird

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book

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The non-destructive testing of austenitic steel welds using ultrasound is of vital importance for assessing safety critical structures such as those found in the nuclear industry. The internal geometry of these welds is heterogeneous
and highly scattering and this makes it dicult to detect and characterise any defects within them. To help overcome these diculties the use of ultrasound transducer arrays and the associated Full Matrix Capture is becoming more widespread. There is a need therefore to develop post-processing algorithms that best utilise the data from such devices. This paper considers the use of a time-frequency domain method known as the Decomposition of the Time Reversal Operator (DORT) method. To develop this method and to demonstrate its ecacy in tackling this problem a series of simulated data sets are used. The simulated data is generated using a finite element method (PZFLEX) with the heterogeneous internal microstructure of the weld being given by previous Electron Backscatter Diraction measurements. A range of artificial flaws are then inserted into this geometry. By varying the flaw size and type a comparison is conducted between the DORT method and the Total Focusing Method (TFM) and
their relative ability to perform flaw detection assessed. Importantly, however, the DORT method relies on a Singular Value Decomposition in time and frequency space and this spectral information contains information about
the flaw size and shape.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of Acoustics 2012 Nantes Conference, France
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventAcoustics 2012 - Nantes, France
Duration: 23 Apr 201227 Apr 2012


ConferenceAcoustics 2012


  • ultrasonic wave propagation
  • heterogenous media
  • non-destructive testing
  • austenitic steel welds
  • ultrasound


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