An Inkjet-Printed Carbon Nanotube Strain Distribution Sensor for Quasi Real-Time Strain Monitoring of Lightweight Design Materials
Carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) composites are lightweight, durable, and corrosionresistive materials that are popular for constructing automotive bodies and aircraft structures. However, their heterogeneous composition and anisotropic mechanical behavior make design of their service lives challenging. To address challenges in monitoring CFRP’s structural behavior, a cheap, weightless, and reliable sensor shall be developed for CFRPs to monitor their damage-to-failure mode. In this study a carbon nanotube (CNT)-embedded thin film is inkjet-printed onto a flexible substrate and applied over a tensile testing coupon. Coupled with the algorithm of electrical impedance tomography, the sensor with 16 electrodes is able to reconstruct the strain distribution of a surface under 8 sec. Non-uniform strain distribution can also be reconstructed at strain levels down to 0.001%.
Y. J. Zhao et al., "An Inkjet-Printed Carbon Nanotube Strain Distribution Sensor for Quasi Real-Time Strain Monitoring of Lightweight Design Materials", Advances in Science and Technology, Vol. 101, pp. 3-8, 2017