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IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control. 2013 Dec;60(12):2575-85. doi: 10.1109/TUFFC.2013.2856.

Super-resolution image reconstruction for ultrasonic nondestructive evaluation.


Ultrasonic testing is one of the most successful nondestructive evaluation (NDE) techniques for the inspection of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) materials. This paper discusses the application of the iterative backprojection (IBP) super-resolution image reconstruction technique to carbon epoxy laminates with simulated defects to obtain high-resolution images for NDE. Super-resolution image reconstruction is an approach used to overcome the inherent resolution limitations of an existing ultrasonic system. It can greatly improve the image quality and allow more detailed inspection of the region of interest (ROI) with high resolution, improving defect evaluation and accuracy. First, three artificially simulated delamination defects in a CFRP panel were considered to evaluate and validate the application of the IBP method. The results of the validation indicate that both the contrast-tonoise ratio (CNR) and the peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR) value of the super-resolution result are better than the bicubic interpolation method. Then, the IBP method was applied to the low-resolution ultrasonic C-scan image sequence with subpixel displacement of two types of defects (delamination and porosity) which were obtained by the micro-scanning imaging technique. The result demonstrated that super-resolution images achieved better visual quality with an improved image resolution compared with raw C-scan images.

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