With the advances of sensing technology, in-situ infrared thermal videos can be collected from Resistance Spot Welding (RSW) processes. Each video records the formulation process of a weld nugget. The nugget evolution creates a “temporal effect” across the frames, which can be leveraged for real-time, nondestructive evaluation (NDE) of the weld quality. Currently, quality prediction with imaging data mainly focuses on optical feature extraction with Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) but does not make the most of such temporal effect. In this study, pixels corresponding to critical locations on the weld nugget surface are extracted from a video to form multivariate time series (MTS). Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines (MARS) is used in MTS processing to remove noisy signals related to uninformative frames. A Stacked Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) model is developed to learn from the processed MTS and then predicts weld nugget size and thickness in real-time NDE. Results from a case study on RSW of Boron steel demonstrates the improvement in prediction accuracy and computational time with the proposed method, as compared to CNN-based weld quality prediction.

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