Skip to Main Content
Surface-mountable wafer-type piezoelectric transducers using lead zirconate titanate (PZT) are widely used to generate and sense guided waves for nondestructive evaluation and structural health monitoring applications. However, little attention has been paid to monitoring PZT transducer integrity, despite possibly being the weakest link in the entire monitoring system. In this study, PZT transducer self-diagnostic techniques, which enable a single PZT transducer to examine its own integrity, are developed based on a time-reversal process; the effects of temperature and structural condition variations are explicitly considered. Two PZT self-diagnosis indices are proposed which allow debonded and cracked PZT conditions to be identified and distinguished from changing environmental and structural conditions. First, the proposed self-diagnosis schemes are theoretically formulated, and then the feasibility of the proposed schemes is validated through simulations and experimental tests under varying temperature and structural conditions.