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Acoustic emission experiments that can be performed in the laboratory using a single transducer and involving specimens or simple components are discussed. The emphasis is on experimental design rather than on single experiments or results produced. The experiments described are restricted to those where application of mechanical load is used to condition the material, and where commercially available equipment is adequate for instrumentation.
The magnitudes and characteristics of the acoustic emission response are described. The compromises in signal detection and data acquisition methods follow from this description. Those aspects of experimental design which are most likely to be foreign to the new user of acoustic emission techniques are pointed out, as are ways to assure that a proper design has been achieved. Results of an experiment which reveals the unique power of acoustic emission technology to reveal subtle changes in material are given as an example.
acoustics, emission, acoustic properties, sonic tests, mechanical tests, nondestructive tests, fabrication, quality control, piezoelectric transducers, yield, yield strength, dislocations (materials), loads (forces), noise (sound)
Head, Materials Test and Evaluation Section, University of California, Lawrence Radiation Laboratory, Livermore, Calif.