"New contributions to granite characterization by ultrasonic testing"

Author: C. Cerrillo, A. Jimenez, M. Rufo, J. Paniagua, and F. T. Pachon Date2014-01

Ultrasound evaluation permits the state of rocks to be determined quickly and cheaply, satisfying the demands faced by today´s producers of ornamental stone, such as environmental sustainability, durability and safety of use. 

The basic objective of the present work is to analyze and develop the usefulness of ultrasound testing in estimating the physico-mechanical properties of granite. Various parameters related to Fast Fourier Transform (FFTs) and attenuation have been extracted from some of the studies conducted (parameters which have not previously been considered in work on this topic, unlike the ultrasonic pulse velocity). The experimental study was carried out on cubic specimens of 30cm edges using longitudinal and shear wave transducers and equipment which extended the normally used natural resonance frequency range up to 500kHz. Additionally, a validation study of the laboratory data has been conducted and some methodological improvements have been implemented. The main contribution of the work is the analysis of linear statistical correlations between the aforementioned new ultrasound parameters and physico-mechanical properties of the granites that had not previously been studied, i.e., resistance to salt crystallization and breaking load for anchors. Being properties that directly affect the durability and safety of use of granites, these correlations consolidate ultrasonics as a nondestructive method well suited to this type of material.