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Characterisation of air coupled transducers

Gachagan, Anthony and Hayward, Gordon and SP, Kelly and Galbraith, Walter (1996) Characterisation of air coupled transducers. IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control, 43 (4). pp. 678-689. ISSN 0885-3010

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his paper describes a theoretical and experimental study for determination of the through-air system impulse response and insertion loss with different air-coupled ultrasonic transducers. Wide-band piezopolymer transducers (PVDF) are employed in both transmission and reception modes and their behavior assessed by means of mathematical modeling and experiment. Specifically, a linear systems approach, modified to include the influence of attenuation in the propagation medium, was used to design suitable PVDF transducers for wide-band operation in air. Suitable devices were then manufactured for determination of the transmission and reception response characteristics of piezocomposite and electrostatic transducers when operating in the air environment. A range of transducers was evaluated, including 1-3 connectivity composites of different ceramic volume fraction and mechanical matching conditions, in addition to electrostatic devices of varying design. To complement the investigation, relative performances for narrow-band operation are also presented under transmission and transmit-receive conditions. Despite the obvious measurement difficulties, good agreement between theory and experiment was observed and the methodology is shown to provide a convenient and robust procedure for comparison of through-air transducers operating in the frequency range 50 KHz to 2 MHz. Although highly resonant, the most effective composite transducers under consideration demonstrate an improvement in two-way insertion loss of 22.4 dB and 11.5 dB over a corresponding electrostatic pair, under narrow-band and wide-band operation, respectively.