The study addresses experimental detection and quantitative interrogation of damage in a jointed composite structure. To construct a cohesive structural health monitoring system for the jointed composite panel, the wave propagation method was used with smart piezoelectric transducers for excitation and sensing. The smart sensor system was configured using four piezo patches located at the four quadrants of the composite panel, and provided multiple actuation/sensing scenarios to capture time and frequency response signals for a variety of bolt damage configurations. Signal information was compressed into non-dimensional damage indices at each excitation configuration. The collected information was used in a pattern recognition algorithm. Based on pattern recognition, a damage discriminator was generated which indicated location and amount of damage information automatically. Using simulated bolt torque loss damage on a jointed composite structure, the damage detection performance of the damage discriminator was evaluated.

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