Plane Wave Imaging (PWI) has been recently proposed for fast ultrasound inspections in the Non-Destructive-Testing (NDT) field. By using a single (or a reduced number) of plane wave emissions and parallel beamforming in reception, frame rates of hundreds to thousands of images per second can be achieved without significant image quality losses with regard to the Total Focusing Method (TFM) or Phased Array (PA). This work addresses the problem of applying PWI in the presence of arbitrarily shaped interfaces, which is a common problem in NDT. First, the mathematical formulation for generating a plane wave inside a component of arbitrary geometry is given, and the characteristics of the resultant acoustic field are analyzed by simulation, showing plane wavefronts with non-uniform amplitude. Then, an imaging strategy is proposed, accounting for this amplitude effect. Finally, the proposed method is experimentally validated, and its application limits are discussed.
This research is supported by the project RTI2018-099118-A-I00 founded by MCIU/AEI/FEDER, UE.and the fellowships PTQ-17-09089 and PRE2019-088602 of the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation.