Abstract

For decades, aircraft disasters have always been a concern for airline companies and especially for consumers. Scientists all over the world have been constantly trying to study, discover and invent new methods for testing and prevention to reduce future aircraft accidents. One of those methods is non-destructive testing, which is a widely adaptive process for analyzing structural integrity over wide arrays of object. X-rays, ultrasound and computed tomography (CT) are non-destructive testing applications commonly used for the commercial aircraft maintenance. These non-destructive testing methods for aircraft structures give us high-quality images of structural damage but, there are some disadvantages related to resolution and the contrast mechanism of the image. The goal of this study is to demonstrate the concept of X-Ray Induced Acoustic Computed Tomography (XACT) imaging method for defect detection and localization through simulations using k-wave MATLAB toolbox. XACT is a technique based on the X-ray induced acoustic effect. In XACT, a short pulsed of X-rays are required to achieve thermal response and generate acoustic waves. X-ray travels to an object, the photons are absorbed causing the temperature in the object to raise, which generates acoustic waves due to thermoelastic expansion. These acoustic waves are then detected by ultrasonic transducers. Within the fuselage of the aircraft, the aircraft’s stiffener is designed using SolidWorks. along with two different types of defects through voids due to manufacturing imperfection process. As well as, cracks in the surface of the model due to mechanical failures are created in MATLAB. Two properties of Aluminum 6065 and Inconel 625 materials were selected for our simulation study since it is often used for the fuselage and/or aircraft engines. XACT images are generated under the combination of high X-ray absorption and ultrasonic transducers that will be able to overcome the disadvantages of the X-ray imaging technique and ultrasound imaging technique in image resolution and contrast mechanisms. The results from this simulation study demonstrate that the XACT method not only gives us high-resolution images but moreover, higher contrast of images that also allows us to detect position accuracy of the cons created.

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