Piezoelectric fiber composite strip transducer design considerations for generating lamb waves

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Lamb waves have great promise among the various active monitoring schemes being researched for Structural Health Monitoring. Planar Lamb wave excitation using surface-bonded piezoelectric strips to function as comb transducers is investigated numerically for both the fundamental symmetric S0 and the antisymmetric A0 wave modes. This comb-type transducer is comprised of multiple piezoelectric elements, which are piezoelectric fiber composites sandwiched between electrodes. These transducer strips reduce the wiring requirements, can conform to curved surfaces, and the properties can be tailored to suit the application. Transducer variables are many; here fiber orientation, volume fraction, poling directions, and electrode locations are investigated. Specifically, piezocomposite properties are estimated through micromechanical modeling for input to finite element analysis of Lamb wave generation and propagation. For this multiphysics problem, the finite element analysis employs co-simulation using ABAQUS Standard and ABAQUS Explicit to simulate transient wave propagation from a strip transducer on a plate. In the finite element results, the amplitude of the Lamb wave at a prescribed distance from the transducer is evaluated to characterize the effectiveness of the composite comb transducer. Furthermore, results show that there are a number of cases where composite actuators provide a large amplitude response. After considering piezoelectric fiber direction, poling direction, and electric field direction, it appears that fiber, polarization, and activation electric fields through the thickness of the transducer represent the optimal design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1345-1358
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures
Issue number12
StatePublished - Aug 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanical Engineering


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