Motivated by its success as a structural health monitoring solution, electromechanical impedance measurements have been utilized as a means for non-destructive evaluation of conventionally and additively manufactured parts. In this process, piezoelectric transducers are either directly embedded in the part under test or bonded to its surface. While this approach has proven to be capable of detecting manufacturing anomalies, instrumentation requirements of the parts under test have hindered its wide adoption. To address this limitation, indirect electromechanical impedance measurement, through instrumented fixtures or testbeds, has recently been investigated for part authentication and non-destructive evaluation applications.
In this work, electromechanical impedance signatures obtained with piezoelectric transducers indirectly attached to the part under test, via an instrumented fixture, are numerically investigated. This aims to better understand the coupling between the instrumented fixture and the part under test and its effects ON sensitivity to manufacturing defects. For this purpose, numerical models are developed for the instrumented fixture, the part under test, and the fixture/part assembly. The frequency-domain spectral element method is used to obtain numerical solutions and simulate the electromechanical impedance signatures over the frequency range of 10–50 kHz. Criteria for selecting the frequency range that is most sensitive to defects in the part under test are proposed and evaluated using standard damage metric definitions. It was found that optimal frequency ranges can be preselected based on the fixture design and its dynamic response.