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Structural Monitoring and Maintenance
  Volume 9, Number 3, September 2022 , pages 237-258

A baseline free method for locating imperfect bolted joints
Reza Soleimanpour, Sayed Mohamad Soleimani and Mariam Naser Sulaiman Salem

    This paper studies detecting and locating loose bolts using nonlinear guided waves. The 3D Finite Element (FE) simulation is used for the prediction of guided waves' interactions with loose bolted joints. The numerical results are verified by experimentally obtained data. The study considers bolted joints consisting of two bolts. It is shown that the guided waves' interaction with surfaces of a loose bolted joint generates Contact Acoustic Nonlinearity (CAN). The study uses CAN for detecting and locating loose bolts. The processed experimentally obtained data show that the CAN is able to successfully detect and locate loose bolted joints. A 3D FE simulation scheme is developed and validated by experimentally obtained data. It is shown that FE can predict the propagation of guided waves in loose bolts and is also able to detect and locate them. Several numerical case studies with various bolt sizes are created and studied using the validated 3D FE simulation approach. It is shown that the FE simulation modeling approach and the signal processing scheme used in the current study are able to detect and locate the loose bolts in imperfect bolted joints. The outcomes of this research can provide better insights into understanding the interaction of guided waves with loose bolts. The results can also enhance the maintenance and repair of imperfect joints using the nonlinear guided waves technique.
Key Words
    3D finite element; anti-asymmetric guided waves; contact acoustic nonlinearity; damage detection; damage localization; imperfect bolted joints
College of Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering, Australian University, Kuwait.

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