This paper presents a strain transfer investigation for Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) strain sensors. For evaluation, a SAW strain sensor is assembled with a pre-tested bond material for potentially high strain transfer on a test holder. The setup is stressed with an axially homogeneous strain up to 500 ppm. The strain transfer ratio is computed from the applied load, the reference measurements with foil strain gauge, and the measured SAW strain sensor signal. The strain transfer performance of the bond material is also investigated with respect to the temperature dependency in the range between 22 °C and 85 °C. At this elevated temperatures an average strain transfer ratio of 0.606 ± 0.7% was measured. Mechanical load cycling tests up to 1000 cycles are used for the evaluation of the elastic fatigue of the bond material. The effects of mechanical load cycling and aging of the bond layer are analyzed with the SAW strain sensor response. After 1000 mechanical load cycles the transferred strain into the SAW strain sensor is 0.582 ± 0.153%. Finally, the experimental results are compared with the results of a 3D FEM simulation which are deviating less than 10%.

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