On the usage of ultrasound computational models for decision making under ambiguity


Computer modeling and simulation is becoming pervasive within the non-destructive evaluation (NDE) industry as a convenient tool for designing and assessing inspection techniques. This raises a pressing need for developing quantitative techniques for demonstrating the validity and applicability of the computational models. Computational models provide deterministic results based on deterministic and well-defined input, or stochastic results based on inputs defined by probability distributions. However, computational models cannot account for the effects of personnel, procedures, and equipment, resulting in ambiguity about the efficacy of inspections based on guidance from computational models only. In addition, ambiguity arises when model inputs, such as the representation of realistic cracks, cannot be defined deterministically, probabilistically, or by intervals. In this work, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory demonstrates the ability of computational models to represent field measurements under known variabilities, and quantify the differences using maximum amplitude and power spectrum density metrics. Sensitivity studies are also conducted to quantify the effects of different input parameters on the simulation results.

2017 Review of Progress in Quantitative Nondestructive Evaluation