Clustering of interlaminar and intralaminar damages in laminated composites under indentation loading using Acoustic Emission

Milad Saeedifar, Mehdi Ahmadi Najafabadi*, Dimitrios Zarouchas, Hossein Hosseini Toudeshky, Meisam Jalalvand

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


This study focuses on the clustering of the indentation-induced interlaminar and intralaminar damages in carbon/epoxy laminated composites using Acoustic Emission (AE) technique. Two quasi-isotropic specimens with layups of [60/0/-60]4S (is named dispersed specimen) and [604/04/-604]S (is named blocked specimen) were fabricated and subjected to a quasi-static indentation loading. The mechanical data, digital camera and ultrasonic C-scan images of the damaged specimens showed different damage evolution behaviors for the blocked and dispersed specimens. Then, the AE signals of the specimens were clustered for tracking the evolution behavior of different damage mechanisms. In order to select a reliable clustering method, the performance of six different clustering methods consisting of k-Means, Genetic k-Means, Fuzzy C-Means, Self-Organizing Map (SOM), Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM), and hierarchical model were compared. The results illustrated that hierarchical model has the best performance in clustering of AE signals. Finally, the evolution behavior of each damage mechanism was investigated by the clustered AE signals with hierarchical model. The results of this study show that using AE technique with an appropriate clustering method such as hierarchical model could be an applicable tool for structural health monitoring of composite structures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-219
Number of pages14
JournalComposites Part B: Engineering
Early online date2 Mar 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018


  • Acoustic emission
  • Clustering methods
  • Damage mechanisms
  • Indentation loading
  • Laminated composites

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