Development of integrated decision fusion software system for aircraft structural health monitoring

Maged B Mikhail, Tennessee State University


Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) is the process of continuous monitoring of the health status of a structure by embedding sensors in the structure. This can be accomplished through a process of implementing damage detection and characterization strategy in the form of software. In the framework of this dissertation, SHM is a mean of non-destructive inspection for monitoring and ensuring the structural integrity of aircrafts. SHM techniques have been utilized to reduce aircrafts maintenance and repair costs while maintaining safety and reliability as well as increasing the availability of their service. This research investigated the benefits provided by integrating decision-making and decision-fusion techniques into the SHM systems. As a result, decision making and fusion algorithms were developed and integrated with appropriate signal processing algorithms in the form of Integrate Decision Fusion Structural Health Monitoring (IDFSHM) software system. The target use of the developed software system is for aircraft crack detection and crack length estimation. Fuzzy network theory and the Dempster-Shafer theory of evidence were used in development of the algorithms. The developed algorithms provided a mean for incorporating a prior knowledge about the monitored structure for improving the overall performance of the SHM system. The developed IDFSHM system was implemented and tested for crack detection and crack length estimation on aircraft structure using real experimental data collected from wing spar lug. The final test results obtained from the IDFSHM showed significant performance improvement in crack detection accuracy with decision fusion feature compared to crack detection accuracy without incorporating the decision fusion algorithm. The performance of the developed IDFSHM software system was also validated using a baseline algorithm. The expected direct benefits of the developed IDFSHM software system, if implemented on real systems, would be to reduce maintenance cost, increase safety, and potentially prevent catastrophic incidences in aircraft operations

Subject Area

Engineering|Electrical engineering

Recommended Citation

Maged B Mikhail, "Development of integrated decision fusion software system for aircraft structural health monitoring" (2013). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI3599436.