AE mapping of engines for spatially located time series

Pornchai Nivesrangsan, John Alexander Steel, Robert Lewis Reuben

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


This paper represents the first step towards using multiple acoustic emission (AE) sensors to produce spatially located time series signals for a running engine. By this it is meant the decomposition of a multi-source signal by acquiring it with an array of sensors and using source location to reconstitute the individual time series attributable to some or all of these signals. Internal combustion engines are a group of monitoring targets which would benefit from such an approach. A series of experiments has been carried out where AE from a standard source has been mapped for a large number of source-sensor pairs on a small diesel engine and on various cast iron blocks of simple geometry. The wave propagation on a typical diesel engine cylinder head or block is complex because of the heterogeneity of the cast iron and the complex geometry with variations in wall-thickness, boundaries and discontinuities. The AE signal distortion for a range of source-sensor pairs has been estimated using time-frequency analysis, and using a reference sensor placed close to the source. At this stage, the emphasis has been on determining a suitable processing scheme to recover a measure of the signal energy, which depends only on the distance of the source and not upon the path. Tentative recommendations are made on a suitable approach to sensor positioning and signal processing with reference to a limited set of data acquired from the running engine. © 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1034-1054
Number of pages21
JournalMechanical Systems and Signal Processing
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2005


  • acoustic emission
  • condition monitoring
  • diesel engines
  • attenuation


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