Article Periodicals » Materials Evaluation » Article
Characterization of Damage Using Ultrasonic Testing on Different Types of Concrete

Concrete is a common material used for structures like buildings and bridges. To assess the structures periodically, nondestructive testing needs to be practical in its cost and application. In this paper, 36 cylindrical specimens are casted with nine different concrete mixtures. These mixtures are classified as follows: varying water-cement ratio (WC) in percentages of 40, 50, and 60 mixed with well-graded aggregates as ordinary concrete (ORC); varying WC of 40, 50, and 60 mixed with short steel fibers as fiber-reinforced concrete (FRC); and WC50 mixed with varying aggregate sizes classified as small (5 to 10 mm aggregates), medium (10 to 15 mm aggregates), and large (13 to 20 mm aggregates). Averaged time domain and frequency domain waveforms are recorded and analyzed to obtain linear and nonlinear ultrasonic parameters. Linear ultrasonic parameters are ultrasonic pulse velocity (UPV) and peak-to-peak amplitude (PPA), while the nonlinear ultrasonic parameter is the second harmonic ratio (SHR). The parameters are measured in two states—undamaged and damaged—under ultimate compressive stress. The UPV and PPA measurements proved to be less sensitive in damage measurements for all nine different types of concrete due to their minimal percentage difference from the undamaged to damaged state. However, this technique may be used to quickly determine the consistency of concrete and its macroscopic state of damage. In nonlinear ultrasonic test parameters, it is found that SHR percentage difference from the undamaged to damaged state has the following behaviors: (1) it is inversely proportional to WC for ORC; (2) it is directly proportional to WC for FRC; and (3) no trend is found for concrete with varying aggregate size at WC50, showing that the strength of concrete is dependent on the combination of maximum aggregate size and WC.


Akçaoğlu, T., 2017, “Determining Aggregate Size & Shape Effect on Concrete Microcracking under Compression by Means of Degree of Reversibility Method,” Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 143, pp. 376–386.

Antonaci, P., C.L.E. Bruno, A.S. Gliozzi, and M. Scalerandi, 2010, “Monitoring Evolution of Compressive Damage in Concrete with Linear and Nonlinear Ultrasonic Methods,” Cement and Concrete Research, Vol. 40, No. 7, pp. 1106–1113.

ASTM, 2016, ASTM C597-16: Standard Test Method for Pulse Velocity Through Concrete, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA.

Breysse, D., 2012, “Nondestructive Evaluation of Concrete Strength: An Historical Review and a New Perspective by Combining NDT Methods,” Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 33, pp. 139–163.

Bruno, C.L.E., A.S. Gliozzi, M. Scalerandi, and P. Antonaci, 2009, “Analysis of Elastic Nonlinearity using the Scaling Subtraction Method,” Physical Review B, Vol. 79, No. 6, pp. 1–13.

Cai, Y.Q., J.-Z. Sun, C.-J. Liu, S.-W. Ma, and X.-C. Wei, 2015, “Relationship between Dislocation Density in P91 Steel and its Nonlinear Ultrasonic Parameter,” International Journal of Iron and Steel Research, Vol. 22, No. 11, pp. 1024–1030.

Daponte, P., F. Maceri, and R.S. Olivito, 1995, “Ultrasonic Signal-Processing Techniques for the Measurement of Damage Growth in Structural Materials,” IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement, Vol. 44, No. 6, pp. 1003–1008.

Federation of Construction Materials Industries, 2003, JCMS-III B5706, “Monitoring Method for Active Cracks in Concrete by Acoustic Emission,” Federation of Construction Materials Industries, Japan.

Green, R.E. Jr., 1973, Treatise on Materials Science and Technology: Volume 3: Ultrasonic Investigation of Mechanical Properties, Academic Press, Cambridge, MA.

Ham, S., H. Song, M.L. Oelze, and J.S. Popovics, 2017, “A Contactless Ultrasonic Surface Wave Approach to Characterize Distributed Damage in Concrete,” Ultrasonics, Vol. 75, pp. 46–57.

Hirose, S., and J.D. Achenbach, 1993, “Higher Harmonics in the Far Field due to Dynamic Crack-face Contacting,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol. 93, No. 6, pp. 142–147.

Jiang, H., J. Zhang, and R. Jiang, 2017, “Stress Evaluation for Rocks and Structural Concrete Members through Ultrasonic Wave Analysis: Review,” Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering, Vol. 29, No. 10, doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)MT.1943-5533.0001935.

Kim, G., C.-W. In, J.-Y. Kim, K.E. Kurtis, and L.J. Jacobs, 2014, “Air-Coupled Detection of Nonlinear Rayleigh Surface Waves in Concrete – Application to Microcracking Detection,” NDT & E International, Vol. 67, pp. 64–70.

Liang, M.T., and J. Wu, 2002, “Theoretical Elucidation on the Empirical Formulae for the Ultrasonic Testing Method for Concrete Structures,” Cement and Concrete Research, Vol. 32, No. 11, pp. 1763–1769.

Maruyama, T., T. Saitoh, and S. Hirose, 2017, “Numerical Study on Subharmonic Generation due to Interior and Surface Breaking Cracks with Boundary Conditions using Time-Domain Boundary Element Method,” International Journal of Solids and Structures, Vol. 126–127, pp. 74–89.

Matlack, K.H., J.-Y. Kim, L.J. Jacobs, and J. Qu, 2014, “Review of Second Harmonic Generation Measurement Techniques for Material State Determination in Metals,” Journal of Nondestructive Evaluation, Vol. 34, No. 273, doi: 10.1007/s10921-014-0273-5.

Ongpeng, J.M.C., A.W.C. Oreta, and S. Hirose, 2016a, “Damage Progression in Concrete using Acoustic Emission Test through Convex Hull Visualization,” ACI Materials Journal, Vol. 113, No. 6, pp. 737–744.

Ongpeng, J.M.C., A.W.C. Oreta, and S. Hirose, 2016b, “Effect of Load Pattern in the Generation of Higher Harmonic Amplitude in Concrete using Nonlinear Ultrasonic Test,” Journal of Advanced Concrete Technology, Vol. 14, No. 5, pp. 205–214.

Ongpeng, J.M., A.W. Oreta, and S. Hirose, 2017a, “Artificial Neural Network Model using Ultrasonic Test Results to Predict Compressive Stress in Concrete,” Computers and Concrete, Vol. 19, No. 1, pp. 59–68, doi: 10.12989/cac.2017.19.1.051

Ongpeng, J.M.C., A.W.C. Oreta, S. Hirose, and K. Nakahata, 2017b, “Nonlinear Ultrasonic Investigation of Concrete with Varying Aggregate Size under Uniaxial Compression Loading and Unloading,” Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering, Vol. 29, No. 2, doi: 10.1061/(ASCE)MT.1943-5533.0001726.

Scalerandi, M., M. Bentahar, and C. Mechri, 2018, “Conditioning and Elastic Nonlinearity in Concrete: Separation of Damping and Phase Contributions,” Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 161, pp. 208–220.

Shah, A.A., and Y. Ribakov, 2009, “Non-linear Ultrasonic Evaluation of Damaged Concrete based on Higher Order Harmonic Generation,” Materials and Design, Vol. 30, No. 10, pp. 4095–4102.

Shah, A.A., and Y. Ribakov, 2010, “Effectiveness of Nonlinear Ultrasonic and Acoustic Emission Evaluation of Concrete with Distributed Damages,” Materials & Design, Vol. 31, No. 8, pp. 3777–3784.

Sim, J.-I., K.-H. Yang, and J.-K. Jeon, 2013, “Influence of Aggregate Size on the Compressive Size Effect According to Different Concrete Types,” Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 44, pp. 716–725.

Stauffer, D.J., C. Woodward, and K.R. White, 2005, “Non-linear Ultrasonic Testing with Resonant and Pulse Velocity Parameters for Early Damage in Concrete,” ACI Materials Journal, Vol. 102, pp. 118–121.

Uddin, M.T., A.H. Mahmood, M.R.I. Kamal, and S.M. Yashin, 2017, “Effects of Maximum Size of Brick Aggregate on Properties of Concrete,” Construction and Building Materials, Vol. 134, pp. 713–726.

Wium, D.J.W., O. Buyukozturk, and V.C. Li, 1984, “Hybrid Model for Discrete Cracks in Concrete,” ASCE Journal of Engineering Mechanics, Vol. 110, No. 8, pp. 1211-1229.

Yang, Z., Y. Tian, W. Li, H. Zhou, W. Zhang, and J. Li, 2017, “Experimental Investigation of the Acoustic Nonlinear Behavior in Granular Polymer Bonded Explosives with Progressive Fatigue Damage,” ACI Materials Journal, Vol. 10, No. 6, p. E660.

Yim, H.J., J.H. Kim, S.J. Park, and H.G. Kwak, 2012, “Characterization of Thermally Damaged Concrete using Non-linear Ultrasonic Method,” Cement and Concrete Research, Vol. 42, pp. 1438–1446.

Zheng, Y., R.G. Maev, and I.Y. Solodov, 1999, “Nonlinear Acoustic Applications for Material Characterization: A Review,” Canadian Journal of Physics, Vol. 77, No. 12, pp. 927–967.

Usage Shares
Total Views
2 Page Views
Total Shares
0 Tweets
0 PDF Downloads
0 Facebook Shares
Total Usage