Ultrasonic Non-Destructive Testing of Advanced Fiberglass Reinforced Polymer Composites

Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composites has been widely used in many sectors of industry since 1960s. To ensure the quality and structural integrity of FRP, it is important to evaluate their physical quality and composition both during manufacture and while in use. For this purpose, a number of standardized tests have been developed to evaluate strength, flexibility, extent of wear, and so on. However, most of these tests require destroying the material to obtain relevant information. For this reason, non-destructive ultrasonic tests are now being developed that can be performed without damage to the material, or even without removing the material from its job. This project with Physical Plant Improvements Inc. involves researching and applying ultrasonic non-destructive testing technology to determine the properties of fiberglass-reinforced laminates, and comparing these properties to results obtained from conventional destructive tests. It is expected that ultrasonic methods can be used to obtain nearly identical data in cases that would normally require destructive testing.

Mark A. Post
Faculty Supervisor: 
Dr. Zheng Hong Zhu