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Journal of Sensors and Sensor Systems An open-access peer-reviewed journal

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J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 7, 259-266, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/jsss-7-259-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Regular research article
10 Apr 2018
Crack luminescence as an innovative method for detection of fatigue damage
Ruben Makris1, Falk Hille1, Marc Thiele1, Dirk Kirschberger2, and Damian Sowietzki2 1Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM), Berlin 13465, Germany
2MR Chemie, Unna 59427, Germany
Abstract. Conventional non-destructive testing methods for crack detection provide just a snapshot of fatigue crack evolution at a specific location in the moment of examination. The crack luminescence coating realizes a clear visibility of the entire crack formation. The coating consists of two layers with different properties and functions. The bottom layer emits light as fluorescence under UV radiation. The top layer covers the fluorescing one and prevents the emitting of light in case of no damage at the surface. Several different experiments show that due to the sensitive coating even the early stage of crack formation can be detected. That makes crack luminescence helpful for investigating the incipient crack opening behavior. Cracks can be detected and observed during operation of a structure, making it also very interesting for continuous monitoring. Crack luminescence is a passive method and no skilled professionals are necessary to detect cracks, as for conventional methods. The luminescent light is clearly noticeable by unaided eye observations and also by standard camera equipment, which makes automated crack detection possible as well. It is expected that crack luminescence can reduce costs and time for preventive maintenance and inspection.
Citation: Makris, R., Hille, F., Thiele, M., Kirschberger, D., and Sowietzki, D.: Crack luminescence as an innovative method for detection of fatigue damage, J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 7, 259-266, https://doi.org/10.5194/jsss-7-259-2018, 2018.

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In structural parts under vibrational loading fatigue cracks can initiate and grow, which can lead to structural failure. Conventional non-destructive testing methods for crack detection provide just a snapshot of fatigue crack evolution, whereas crack luminescence coating realizes clear visibility of the entire crack formation. Fatigue causing cyclic tensile tests and examinations on special test bodies allowing control of the crack opening width demonstrate a high sensitivity of the coating.
In structural parts under vibrational loading fatigue cracks can initiate and grow, which can...
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