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18 April 2011Maximum a posteriori probability estimation for localizing damage using ultrasonic guided waves
Presented is an approach to damage localization for guided wave structural health monitoring (GWSHM) in plate-like
structures. In this mode of SHM, transducers excite and sense guided waves in order to detect and characterize the
presence of damage. The premise of the presented localization approach is simple: use as the estimated damage location
the point on the structure with the maximum a posteriori probability (MAP) of being the location of damage (i.e., the
most probable location given a set of sensor measurements). This is accomplished by constructing a minimally-informed
statistical model of the GWSHM process. Parameters of the model which are unknown, such as scattered wave
amplitude, are assigned non-informative Bayesian prior distributions and averaged out of the a posteriori probability
calculation. Using an ensemble of measurements from an instrumented plate with stiffening stringers, the performance of
the MAP estimate is compared to that of what were found to be the two most effective previously reported algorithms.
The MAP estimate proved superior in nearly all test cases and was particularly effective in localizing damage using very
sparse arrays of as few as three transducers.
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Eric B. Flynn, Michael D. Todd, Paul D Wilcox, Bruce W. Drinkwater, Anthony J Croxford, "Maximum a posteriori probability estimation for localizing damage using ultrasonic guided waves," Proc. SPIE 7984, Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems 2011, 79842K (18 April 2011);