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A Piezoelectric Strain Transducer to Evaluate the Severity of Pipe Vibration



A new strain transducer developed mainly for the inspection and evaluation of piping systems with excessive vibration is presented in this paper. Fatigue failure induced by vibration is one of the most common causes of piping failures. Procedures to evaluate the severity of piping vibration are usually based on pipe velocity or displacement. Although simple and fast, these procedures do not provide precise information on the risk of piping fatigue failure. Through the measurement of pipe dynamic strains the risk of failure due to vibration could be determined more accurately; however, the measurement of strain is usually performed using the conventional strain gage method, a time-consuming technique that can be diffcult to implement in certain industrial scenarios. Motivated by the need of a simple and rapid method to measure pipe dynamic strains, a piezoelectric dynamic strain transducer has been developed. This work presents a description of the piezoelectric strain transducer and the preliminary results of pipe strain measurements. The transducer can be applied directly to the pipe through magnetic bases allowing for the quick measurement of dynamic strains in many points of the pipe. The transducer signal can be read with the same commercial data collectors used for accelerometers.