Multicrack detection on semirigidly connected beams utilizing dynamic data

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal

24 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90-99
Journal / PublicationJournal of Engineering Mechanics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008


The problem of crack detection has been studied by many researchers, and many methods of approaching the problem have been developed. To quantify the crack extent, most methods follow the model updating approach. This approach treats the crack location and extent as model parameters, which are then identified by minimizing the discrepancy between the modeled and the measured dynamic responses. Most methods following this approach focus on the detection of a single crack or multicracks in situations in which the number of cracks is known. The main objective of this paper is to address the crack detection problem in a general situation in which the number of cracks is not known in advance. The crack detection methodology proposed in this paper consists of two phases. In the first phase, different classes of models are employed to model the beam with different numbers of cracks, and the Bayesian model class selection method is then employed to identify the most plausible class of models based on the set of measured dynamic data in order to identify the number of cracks on the beam. In the second phase, the posterior (updated) probability density function of the crack locations and the corresponding extents is calculated using the Bayesian statistical framework. As a result, the uncertainties that may have been introduced by measurement noise and modeling error can be explicitly dealt with. The methodology proposed herein has been verified by and demonstrated through a comprehensive series of numerical case studies, in which noisy data were generated by a Bernoulli-Euler beam with semirigid connections. The results of these studies show that the proposed methodology can correctly identify the number of cracks even when the crack extent is small. The effects of measurement noise, modeling error, and the complexity of the class of identification model on the crack detection results have also been studied and are discussed in this paper. © 2008 ASCE.

Research Area(s)

  • Beams, Connections, Cracking, Data analysis