Long short-term memory networks with attention learning for high-rate structural health monitoring

Nelson, Matthew
Barzegar, Vahid
Laflamme, Simon
Laflamme, Simon
Hu, Chao
Dodson, Jacob
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Civil, Construction and Environmental EngineeringElectrical and Computer EngineeringCenter for Nondestructive Evaluation (CNDE)

High-rate dynamic systems undergo events of amplitudes greater than 100 gs in a span of less than 100 ms. The unique characteristics of high-rate dynamic systems include 1) large uncertainties in the external loads, 2) high levels of non-stationarity and heavy disturbances, and 3) unmolded dynamics generated from changes in the system configurations. This paper presents a deep learning algorithm consisting of an ensemble of long short-term memory (LSTM) cells used to conduct high-rate state estimation. The ensemble of LSTMs receives and transforms the signal into inputs of different time resolutions. Each input vector correlates to an LSTM cell which predicts the signal in real-time and produces feature vectors. The feature vectors are then processed through an attention layer and dense layer to predict the physical features of the system. Here, we study the temporal evolution of the attention layer weights to conduct state estimation, while the LSTM cells are attempting to conduct measurement predictions. We study the performance of the algorithm on experimental data generated by DROPBEAR, a dedicated testbed for high-rate structural health monitoring research. State estimation consists of estimating, in real-time, the location of a cart that moves along a beam. Results show that the attention layer weights can be used to estimate the cart location but that the beam requires impact excitations to accelerate the convergence of the algorithm.


This proceeding is published as Nelson, Matthew, Vahid Barzegar, Simon Laflamme, Chao Hu, and Jacob Dodson. "Long short-term memory networks with attention learning for high-rate structural health monitoring." In Sensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems 2021, vol. 11591 (2021): 115910H. DOI: 10.1117/12.2582428.