A system for analyzing the fill characteristics of a container. A container having a filling material therein is positioned adjacent a sound generator. Sound waves from the generator are applied to the container, causing it to vibrate. A vibration detector is used to determine the amount of container vibration. A preferred vibration detector involves a laser vibrometer which applies a reference laser beam to the vibrating container. The reference beam is reflected off of the container to generate a reflected laser beam. The reflected beam experiences a Doppler frequency shift compared with the reference beam which is caused by container vibration. The Doppler shift of the reflected beam is then compared with standardized Doppler shift data from a control container. Repeated Doppler shift measurements may also be undertaken which are converted into a vibration profile that is compared with a standardized vibration profile from a control container.
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF THE INVENTION
The United States has rights in this invention pursuant to contract number DE-AC07-76ID01570 between the U.S. Department of Energy and EG&G Idaho, Inc., now contract number DE-AC07-94ID13223 between the U.S. Department of Energy and Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company.