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Characterization of mechanical properties of leather with airborne ultrasonics

Cheng-Kung Liu, Nicholas P. Latona, Maryann Taylor, Christopher Eble, Mila L. Aldema-Ramos
Journal of the American Leather Chemists Association 2015 v.110 pp. 88-93
leather, leather industry, nondestructive methods, product quality, tensile strength, ultrasonics
A nondestructive method to accurately evaluate the quality of hides and leather is urgently needed by leather and hide industries. We previously reported the research results for airborne ultrasonic (AU) testing using non-contact transducers to evaluate the quality of hides and leather. The ability of AU testing was demonstrated for revealing defects in hides and leather that were difficult to be found during visual inspection. Recently, new research was carried out to develop AU methods to nondestructively characterize the mechanical properties of leather. Observations showed a strong correlation between the mechanical properties of leather and the corresponding AU parameters based on the distribution of the transmission time (time of flight) through leather. We also used this nondestructive method to characterize the grain break of leather. Results showed the difference in grain break could be determined from the AU parameters collected from moving the AU sensors over a leather sample. Observations showed the poorer the grain break, the higher the time of flight distribution. In short, this study demonstrated that the tensile strength, stiffness, toughness, and grain break could be nondestructively determined by AU.