Campus Units

Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Center for Nondestructive Evaluation (CNDE)

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date


Journal or Book Title

Proceedings of SPIE





First Page


Last Page


Research Focus Area

Structural Engineering, Geotechnical/Materials Engineering



Conference Title

Nondestructive Characterization for Composite Materials, Aerospace Engineering, Civil Infrastructure, and Homeland Security

Conference Date

March 11-14, 2013


San Diego, CA


Damages in composite components of wind turbine blades and large-scale structures can lead to increase in maintenance and repair costs, inoperability, and structural failure. The vast majority of condition assessment of composite structures is conducted by visual inspection and non-destructive evaluation (NDE) techniques. NDE techniques are temporally limited, and may be further impeded by the anisotropy of the composite materials, conductivity of the fibers, and the insulating properties of the matrix. In previous work, the authors have proposed a novel soft elastomeric capacitor (SEC) sensor for monitoring of large surfaces, applicable to composite materials. This soft capacitor is fabricated using a highly sensitive elastomer sandwiched between electrodes. It transduces strain into changes in capacitance. Here, we present a fabrication method for fabricating the SEC. Different surface treatment techniques for the nanoparticles are investigated and the effects on the mechanical and the electrical properties of the produced film are studied. Results show that using melt mixing fabrication method was successful at dispersing the nanoparticles without using any surface treatment, including coating the particles with PDMS oil or the use of Si-69 coupling agent. Yet, treating the surface would result in increasing the stiffness of the matrix as well as improving the interaction between the filler particles and the matrix


This proceeding is published as Saleem, H., M. Thunga, M. Kollosche, M. Kessler, and Simon Laflamme. "Enhanced polymer nanocomposites for condition assessment of wind turbine blades." In Nondestructive Characterization for Composite Materials, Aerospace Engineering, Civil Infrastructure, and Homeland Security 2013, vol. 8694, p. 86940A. International Society for Optics and Photonics, 2013. DOI: 10.1117/12.2009856. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)



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