Structural damage detection and assessment from modal response

T. Pothisiri, K. D. Hjelmstad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


This paper presents a global damage detection and assessment algorithm based on a parameter estimation method using a finite-element model and the measured modal response of a structure. Damage is characterized as a reduction of the member constitutive parameter from a known baseline value. An optimization scheme is proposed to localize damaged parts of the structure. The algorithm accounts for the possibility of multiple solutions to the parameter estimation problem that arises from using spatially sparse measurements. Errors in parameter estimates caused by sensitivity to measurement noise are reduced by selecting a near-optimal measurement set from the data at each stage of the localization algorithm. Damage probability functions are computed upon completion of the localization process for candidate elements. Monte Carlo methods are used to compute the required probabilities based on the statistical distributions of the parameters for the damaged and the associated baseline structure. The algorithm is tested in a numerical simulation environment using a planar bridge truss as a model problem.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-145
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Engineering Mechanics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Damage assessment
  • Finite element method
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Structures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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