PZT Guided Waves Sensor Permanently Attached on Multi-Wire AWG12 Cables Used as Communication Medium

Trane, Gianpiero; Mijarez, Rito; Guevara, Ricardo; Baltazar, Arturo
February 2015
AIP Conference Proceedings;2015, Vol. 1650 Issue 1, p631
Conference Proceeding
Guided waves in solid media have been used in structural health monitoring (SHM) and non-destructive testing (NDT) applications due to their mechanical propagation properties. In this context, guided waves communications offer the reuse of infrastructure as communication channel, in which the guided waves work as the information carrying signals. This study presents the proprietary design and implementation of a piezoelectric (PZT) sensor for the transmission and reception of guided waves that uses a multiple-wire AWG12 cable, commonly used in electric domestic and industrial applications, as a communication channel. The design involves electrical/mechanical coupling, electric isolation, instrumentation and casing. The PZT guided waves transmitter instrumentation includes a microcontroller-based pulse position modulator (PPM), a signal booster, a PZT crystal and a 9 V battery. Dispersion curves of the cable and dynamical linear 3D finite element (FE) models of the sensor were performed to substantiate the proper frequency selection. To evaluate the transmitter design, a receiver instrumentation package made of a PZT crystal, an amplifier and a commercial data acquisition module connected to a personal computer was implemented. Experimental tests were conducted in the laboratory using 1 m and 4 m AWG12 cables. Results showed that, although there was significant dispersion and multiple mode excitations of the transmitted pulses, the system correctly identified 10-bit frames of guided wave PPM encoded information.


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