Influence of mechanical and geometrical properties of embedded long-gauge strain sensors on the accuracy of strain measurement

Autores UPV
Revista Measurement Science and Technology


In many civil and geotechnical applications it is of interest to monitor the strain deep inside the structure; consequently, it is necessary to embed the sensors into the structure's material. Construction and geotechnical materials, such as concrete and soil, can be affected by local defects, e.g. cracks, air pockets and inclusions. To monitor these materials at a structural level it is necessary to use long-gauge sensors. As the sensor has to be embedded in the host material, its presence causes perturbation of the strain field and influences the accuracy of the strain measurement. The aim of this research was to identify the critical parameters that influence the accuracy of the strain measurement, to study how these parameters affect the accuracy, and to give recommendations for sensor users. The study was based on finite element analysis and all involved materials were assumed to have the MöhrCoulomb elastic, perfectly plastic behavior. A suitability of the numerical model for the analysis was verified using the experimental results of two cases reported in the literature and one on-site application. The study revealed that the most important parameters that influence the accuracy of the strain measurement are the goodness of interaction (strain transfer) between the host material and the anchor pieces of the sensor, the ratio between equivalent Young's modulus of the sensor and the Young's modulus of the host material, the radius of the anchor piece and the gauge length. The numerical model and parametric study are presented in detail along with practical recommendations. © 2012 IOP Publishing Ltd.