Experimental Mechanics

, Volume 39, Issue 4, pp 265–273

The application of evolutionary and maximum entropy algorithms to photoelastic spectral analysis


  • M. N. Pacey
    • Department of Mechanical and Marine EngineeringUniversity of Plymouth
  • X. Z. Wang
    • Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Sheffield
  • S. J. Haake
    • Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Sheffield
  • E. A. Patterson
    • Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Sheffield

DOI: 10.1007/BF02329803

Cite this article as:
Pacey, M.N., Wang, X.Z., Haake, S.J. et al. Exp Mech (1999) 39: 265. doi:10.1007/BF02329803


Over the past 10 years, spectral analysis has been shown to have the potential to be a reliable means of automating photoelasticity. However, the four methods of analyzing the spectra that have previously been proposed are slow and, in some cases, inaccurate. This paper describes three new methods for spectral analysis based on the maximum entropy method, a genetic algorithm and a memetic algorithm. Thirty-five spectra for known fringe orders were recorded and used in testing the four existing methods and the three new ones. It was found that the new methods were all considerably faster than the existing methods, although less accurate than the best existing method. By combining the maximum entropy method with either the genetic algorithm or the memetic algorithm, spectra could be analyzed up to 30 times as fast as they could with any of the existing methods and with comparable accuracy.

Key Words

automated photoelasticityspectral analysisgenetic algorithmmaximum entropycomputational methods

Copyright information

© Society for Experimental Mechanics, Inc. 1996