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Laser Induced Fluorescence Imaging Of Thermal Damage In Polymer Composites

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.359.1 - 4.359.10

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Asad Yousuf

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Session 3659

Laser Induced Fluorescence Imaging Of Thermal Damage in Polymer Composites Using LabView and IMAQ Vision

Asad Yousuf, P.E Professor, Electronics Engineering Technology Savannah State University


Polymer-composites (PMC’s) are becoming increasingly important in the production of high performance vehicles and aircraft, where their low weight and high mechanical strength, combined with advancements in manufacturing technology, ensure increased use for a variety of applications. Of particular concern in the aerospace industry is the tendency of some PMC materials to become irreversibly damaged when exposed to elevated temperatures. This paper will discuss fluorescence based imaging system capable of identifying regions of thermal damage in polymer-matrix composites.

In an effort to further understand the intervening functions assigned to the assessment of thermal damages in polymer composites this paper will demonstrate a PC-based virtual instrumentation system using the Image Acquisition (IMAQ) Vision software with the General Purpose Interface Bus (GPIB) controlled by the LabView (Laboratory Virtual Instrument Engineering Workbench) software.


Spectral imaging is the determination of spatially distributed and chemically/biologically distinct elements in heterogeneous material. It is a powerful tool for studying a wide range of materials including biological materials, polymers, and semiconductors. Advances in the field of spectral imaging made through the development of a number of different types of technology, including digital image processing hardware and software, and continuously tunable, image quality spectral filters have resulted in the rapid collection of specific images that have high contrast and high resolution.

Typical non-destructive techniques are capable of detecting flaws, such as cracks and delaminations, but cannot detect initial heat damage, which occurs on a molecular scale. There are many methods in use such as: Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Optical Microscopy and etc. used to investigate heat damage of composites and epoxies. Spectroscopic techniques such as Laser-Induced Fluorescence (LIF) can detect molecular changes of the polymer matrix resin that results from elevated temperatures. LIF can be used as a tool for quantifying and imaging heat-

Yousuf, A. (1999, June), Laser Induced Fluorescence Imaging Of Thermal Damage In Polymer Composites Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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