Noncontact super-resolution guided wave array imaging of subwavelength defects using a multiscale deep learning approach

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© The Author(s) 2020. Subwavelength defect imaging using guided waves has been known to be a difficult task mainly due to the diffraction limit and dispersion of guided waves. In this article, we present a noncontact super-resolution guided wave array imaging approach based on deep learning to visualize subwavelength defects in plate-like structures. The proposed approach is a novel hierarchical multiscale imaging approach that combines two distinct fully convolutional networks. The first fully convolutional network, the global detection network, globally detects subwavelength defects in a raw low-resolution guided wave beamforming image. Then, the subsequent second fully convolutional network, the local super-resolution network, locally resolves subwavelength-scale fine structural details of the detected defects. We conduct a series of numerical simulations and laboratory-scale experiments using a noncontact guided wave array enabled by a scanning laser Doppler vibrometer on aluminate plates with various subwavelength defects. The results demonstrate that the proposed super-resolution guided wave array imaging approach not only locates subwavelength defects but also visualizes super-resolution fine structural details of these defects, thus enabling further estimation of the size and shape of the detected subwavelength defects. We discuss several key aspects of the performance of our approach, compare with an existing super-resolution algorithm, and make recommendations for its successful implementations.

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Structural Health Monitoring