Surface Stitching of a Wind Turbine Blade Using Digital Image Correlation

  • Bruce LeBlanc
  • Christopher Niezrecki
  • Peter Avitabile
  • James Sherwood
  • Julie Chen
Part of the Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series book series (CPSEMS)


Advances in computing and camera technologies have greatly enhanced the utility of three dimensional (3D) digital image correlation (DIC) in the last several years. For example, 3D DIC is now being used as a tool to measure operational deflection shapes, full-field dynamic strain and discrete point tracking. Due to the line of sight requirements of stereo photogrammetry it may not be possible to measure every location required on a surface within a field of view allowed by a single camera pair. Therefore, there is a need to have the capability to stitch several fields of view together, providing a continuous measurement over the entire surface of a structure. This paper presents an approach to stitch several fields of view measured using 3D DIC, to provide full-field information of a Sandia National Laboratories CX-100 nine meter wind turbine blade. A loading test was performed on the cantilevered turbine blade with 16 separate fields of view captured in both loaded and unloaded conditions. The processed results provide full surface displacement and strain information of the CX-100 nine meter blade. These results indicate the potential of utilizing stitching to perform full surface static and dynamic measurement of structures.


Wind Turbine Digital Image Correlation Blade Surface Wind Turbine Blade Optical Target 
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The authors gratefully appreciate the financial support for this work provided by the Department of Energy (Grant # DE-EE001374), and thank the National Renewable Energy Laboratory for use of its test facilities and support from staff at the National Wind Technology Center namely Norman Hill and Bill Gage for assistance during testing. The authors also thank Mark Rumsey and Sandia National Laboratories for providing the test blade used in these experiments.


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Copyright information

© The Society for Experimental Mechanics, Inc. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruce LeBlanc
    • 1
  • Christopher Niezrecki
    • 1
  • Peter Avitabile
    • 1
  • James Sherwood
    • 1
  • Julie Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.Structural Dynamics and Acoustic Systems LaboratoryUniversity of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA

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