Evaluation of acoustic emission source localization accuracy in concrete structures

Fengqiao Zhang*, Lotfollah Pahlavan, Yuguang Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)
102 Downloads (Pure)


Acoustic emission source localization is a promising monitoring technique for concrete structures. However, the accuracy of acoustic emission source localization is influenced by many factors, such as the presence of cracks, which are commonly observed in existing reinforced concrete structures. In this article, the acoustic emission source localization is evaluated using a numerical model with a total number of 11,827,200 independent simulated tests. In this work, the investigated influential factors include the presence of cracks, arrival time picking error, and senor layout. The accuracy of source localization is quantified by the characteristic error defined in this article. Using the proposed wave propagation properties, a relatively stable characteristic error of 150 mm is estimated in the detection zone with the maximum sensor spacing less than 1 m. The evaluation approach and simulated characteristic error are validated experimentally by comparing the 200 manually generated signals using hammer hits on a cracked concrete beam.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2063-2074
Number of pages12
JournalStructural Health Monitoring
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • accuracy
  • Acoustic emission source localization
  • arrival time picking error
  • concrete structures
  • crack


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