A novel finite element-based system identification procedure is proposed to detect defects in existing frame structures when excited by blast loadings. The procedure is a linear time-domain system identification technique where the structure is represented by finite elements and the input excitation is not required to identify the structure. It identifies stiffness parameter (EI/L) of all the elements and tracks the changes in them to locate the defect spots. The similar procedure can also be used to monitor health of structures just after natural events like strong earthquakes and high winds. With the help of several numerical examples, it is shown that the algorithm can identify defect-free and defective structures even in the presence of noise in the output response information. The accuracy of the method is much better than other methods currently available even when input excitation information was used for identification purpose. The method not only detects defective elements but also locate the defect spot more accurately within the defective element. The structures can be excited by single or multiple blast loadings and the defect can be relatively small and large. With the help of several examples, it is established that the proposed method can be used as a nondestructive defect evaluation procedure for the health assessment of existing structures.
- Finite element
- Health assessment
- System identification and unknown blast excitation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Management Science and Operations Research
- Engineering (miscellaneous)