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Internship report on Non-Destructive Testing

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Practicum Report
On
Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)
Submitted To

Registrar

IUBAT—International University of Business Agriculture and Technology

Submitted By

1. Md. Shahin Manjurul Alam ID# 07207013


Program: BSME

December 14, 2010

IUBAT-International University of Business Agriculture & Technology

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Non-Destructive Testing
(NDT)

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Request for the Report

December 14, 2010

Engr. Abdul Wadud


Faculty and Course Coordinator
Department of Mechanical Engineering
CEAT- College of Engineering and Technology
IUBAT- International University of Business Agriculture and Technology
4, Embankment Drive Road, Uttara Model Town, Sector 10, Dhaka 1230, Bangladesh.

Subject: Request for the report.

Dear Sir
With due respect, I would like to submit this report as partial fulfillment of the BSME program,
the topic of ―Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)‖. It was superlative opportunity for me to work
on this topic to actualize my theoretical knowledge in the practical area and to have an enormous
experience on that system. Now I am looking forward for your kind assessment regarding this
report.

I would be very kind of you, if you please take the trouble of going through the report and
evaluate my performance regarding this report.

Sincerely Yours,

….…………………
1. Md. Shahin Manjurul Alam
ID # 07207014
BSME

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Letter of Transmittal
December 14, 2010

Engr. Abdul Wadud


Faculty and Course Coordinator
Department of Mechanical Engineering
CEAT- College of Engineering and Technology
IUBAT- International University of Business Agriculture and Technology
4, Embankment Drive Road, Uttara Model Town, Sector 10, Dhaka 1230, Bangladesh.

Subject: Letter of Transmittal of the Practicum Report.

Dear Sir

I have pleasure in submitting the practicum report on “Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)”.


According to your requirement I had worked in Saj Engineering & Trading Company. It was a
challenging work because, in our country Saj Engineering & Trading Company is the only one
company which has the latest equipments for NDT services and expert NDT practitioners. It
was certainly a great opportunity for me to work on this paper to actualize my theoretical
knowledge in the practical arena.

Though there were many hindrances arose during I was conducting data and information for this
project, I tried my level best to achieve our goal to make a realistic and informative research
paper.

Thank you, Sir


Sincerely Yours,

….……………………..
2. Md. Shahin Manjurul Alam
ID # 07207014
BSME

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SAJ ENGINEERING & TRADING COMPANY


205/5 Elephant Road (1st floor) Dhaka-1205, Bangladesh
Phone: +88 02 9677628, +88 02 8616859 Fax: +88 02 9677625 www.sajetc.com

To Whom It May Concern

This is to certify that Md. Shahin Manjurul Alam, student of IUBAT has continuing his
Internship program with us from 1st October, 2010 till today. The subject matter of the internship
program was Non-Destructive Testing (NDT).

During his internship he followed instructions according to the satisfaction of the management.
He was very keen to learn the lessons and enthusiastic in completing any assignment that was
given to him time to time.

We wish all the best for his future endeavors.

-----------------------------
Jahangir Kabir
CEO
Saj Engineering & Trading Company

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Student's Declaration

This is to inform that the Practicum Report on “Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)” has only been
prepared as a partial fulfillment of the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME)
Program. I hereby declare that the project embodied in this report in the result of my own
handwork and has not been submitted for another degree to another university.

Authors,

….………………………
1. Md. Shahin Manjurul Alam
ID # 07207014
BSME

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Acknowledgement

This Practicum Report which is entitled as “Non-Destructive Testing (NDT)” is the concrete
effort of a number of people.

In the process of conducting this research project, I would like to express my gratitude and
respect to some generous persons for their immense help and enormous cooperation.

First of all I would like to pay my gratitude to Honorable Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. M.
Alimullah Miyan for giving me chance to prepare my research about this splendid topic.

I am very much grateful to some of my faculties specially Engr. Abdul Wadud, Respected
Course Coordinator of ME department of IUBAT, for his helping hand. I also say my warmest
thanks to Engr. Sarwar Iqbal, respected Faculty of ME department of IUBAT who had taken
many courses. I would like to thanks Engr. Amirul Islam for his painstaking guidance and
constant inspiration to do this report.

After that I would like to express my special gratitude to Md. Jahangir Kabir, CEO of Saj
Engineering & Trading Company, Engr. Amit Hasan, Service Engineer and Ferdous Ahmed
Marketing Executive of Saj Engineering & Trading Company for their keen interest and valuable
suggestions regarding preparing this report. I will never forget Engr. Md. Rashedul Alam,
Marico Bangladesh Ltd, who recommended us to do our internship on Non-Destructive Testing
in Saj Engineering Trading Company.

Finally I also feel it is important to acknowledge and thanks to my classmates especially to those
who participated in the data collection and who helped a lot to provide a valuable forum for the
exchange of ideas and information.

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Company Profile
Saj Engineering & trading company was established on 1998 and trying to develop specializing

on the supply full range of Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) equipments and its consumables to
Aviation, fertilizer, power generation, shipbuilding, Defense, training institute and NDT service
provider etc.
Company Goal
It is our goal to provide NDT practitioners with quality on the latest technology at reasonable prices and
ensure that these are readily available at our customer's convenience and satisfaction. Through the years,
we have endeavored to represent only the well-known manufacturers of NDT equipment in the world.

Our Customer
 BIMAN BANGLADESH AIR LINES.
 BANGLADESH AIR FORCE.
 BANGLADESH ARMY.
 BANGLADESH NAVY.
 BANGLADESH SHIPPING CORPORATION.
 BANGLADESH INLAND WATER TRANSPORT AUTHORITY.
 BANGLADESH INLAND WATER TRANSPORT CORPORATION
 DOCKYARD & ENGINEERING WORKS LTD.
 KHULNA SHIPYARD LTD.
 BANGLADESH POWER DEVELOPMENT BOARD.
 CHITTAGONG PORT AUTHORITY.
 ATOMIC ENERGY CENTER
 ENGINEERING UNIVERSITY
 ALL INSPECTION COMPANY IN BANGLADESH

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Our Sole Agent


 MITSUBISHI HEAVY INDUSTRIES MARINE LTD. JAPAN
 DAIKAI ENGINEERING PTE LTD. SINGAPORE (Daihatsu Diesel co ltd.)
 IHI MARINE CO LTD. JAPAN
 ISS MACHINERY CO LTD. JAPAN
 MacGREGOR (SGP) PTE LTD. SINGAPORE
 SKL MOTOREN-UND SYSTEMTECHNIK,GERMANY
 ROSTOCK DIESEL GmbH, GERMANY
 RS ―UNISCHIFF GmbH‖ GERMANY
 VRM SERVICES, SINGAPORE
 OLYMPUS SINGAPORE PTE LTD.
 OLYMPUS NDT , CANADA
 SIMPLEX MARINE PTE LTD(BLOM +VOSS,GERMANY)
 BRANDNER ENGINEERING –AIRCON SAVER, GERMANY
 PT SELAMAT SEMPURNA TBK(SAKURA), INDONESIA
 ITW, INDIA(ITW, USA- FORTUNE 200 COMPANY)
 ICM, BELGIUM
 Emerson, USA

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Table of Contents
Topic Name Page
1. Preparatory Part:
A. Title Fly…………………………………………………………………………..…… 10

B. Topic Name…………………………………..…………………………….………… 10

C. Request for Report ………………………………………………………...………… 10

D. Letter of Transmittal…………………………............................................................. 10

E. To whom it May we concern …………………………................................................ 10

F. Student Declaration …………………………...............................................................10


G. Acknowledgement …………………………………………………………...…….…10
H. Table of Content ………………………………………………………………… 10- 10
J. Executive Summary …………………………………………………………………...10

2. Text of the Report


Introduction
2.1 Origin of the report
2.2 Objective
2.2.1 Broad Objective
2.2.2 Specific Objectives
2.3 Background
2.4 Methodology
2.5 Limitations

3. Company Overview
3.1 Company Profile…………………………………………………………….1
3.1 Company Goal………………………………………………………..1
3.2 Our Customer……………………………………………………….…………..1
3.3 Our Sole Agent…………………………………………………………………2
4. Introduction of Non-destructive Testing (NDT)………………………….3
4.1 History of NDT……………………………………………………….…3
4.3 Importance of NDT……………………………………………………...4
4.5 NDT Methods…………………………………………………………...5

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4.6 Six Most Common NDT Methods……………………………………....5


4.6.1 Visual and Optic Testing (VT)…………………………………………..6
4.6.2 Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT)……………………………………………6

4.6.3 Magnetic Particle Testing (MPT)………………………….……………..6

4.6.4 Eddy Current Testing (ECT)…………………………………….………6

4.6.5 Radiography Testing (RT)……………………………………….………7

4.6.6 Ultrasonic Testing (UT)…………………………….………………7

5. Visual Testing (VT)

5.1 Introduction………………………………………………………………7
5.1 Physical Principle………………………………………………………..8
5.3 Inspection Requirements………………………………………………..9
5.4 Practical Considerations………………………………………………..10
6. Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT)

6.1 Introduction Dye Penetrant Testing…………………………………………...10

6.2 History Dye Penetrant Testing………………………………………..………..11

6.3 DPT for Detectability of Flaws…………………………………..…………….11

6.4 Process for Dye Pretrant Testing………………………………………………..12

6.5 Common Uses of Dye Penetrant Testing………………………………………..14

6.6 Effectiveness of Dye Penetrant Testing…………………………………………15

6.7 Advantages of Dye Penetrant Testing………………………………………….16

6.8 Disadvantages of Dye Penetrant Testing ……………………………………….17

7. Magnetic Particle Testing (MPT)

7.1 Introduction of Magnetic Particle Testing………………………………………17

7.2 History of Magnetic Particle Testing……………………………………………18

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7.3 Basic Principles…………………………………………………………………19

7.4 Magnetic Field Orientation and Flaw Detectability…………………………….20

7.5 Portable Equipments for Magnetic Particle Testing……………………….……22

7.6 Permanent magnets……………………………………………………………..22

7.7 Electromagnets…………………………………………………………………..23
7.8 Prods……………………………………………………………………………..24

7.9 Portable Coils and Conductive Cables………………………………………….25

7.10 Portable Power Supplies………………………………………………………...25

7.11 Lights for Magnetic Particle Inspection…………….………………………….26

7.12 Dry Particle Inspection…………………………………………………………27

7.13 Examples of Dry Magnetic Particle Inspection…………………………………27

7.14 Advantages of Magnetic Particle Testing………………………………………28


7.15 Disadvantages of Magnetic Particle Testing……………………………………28

8. Eddy Current Testing (ECT)

8.1 Introduction of Eddy Current Testing…………………………………………29

8.2 History of Eddy Current Testing……………………………………………….30

8.3 Present State of Eddy Current Inspection………………………………………30

8.4 Research to Improve Eddy current measurements………………………………31

8.4.1 Photoinductive Imaging (PI)……………………………………………………32

8.4.1 Pulse Eddy Current……………………………………………………………..32

8.5 Eddy Current Instruments………………………………………………………32

8.6 Probes - Mode of Operation…………………………………………………….33

8.6.1 Absolute Probes…………………………………………………………34

8.6.2 Differential Probes……………………………………………………...34

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8.6.3 Reflection Probes………………………………………………………..35

8.6.4 Hybrid Probes…………………………………………………………..35

8.8.5 Probes – Configurations………………………………………………..36

8.8.6 Surface Probes………………………………………………………….36

8.8.7 Bolt Hole Probes……………………………………….……………….37

8.8.8 ID or Bobbin Probes……………………………………………………37

8.8.9 OD or Encircling Coils………………………………………………….38

8.9 Surface Breaking Cracks…………………………………………………………38


8.10 Surface Crack Detection Using Sliding Probes………………………………….40

8.11 Probe Types……………………………………………………………………...40

8.11.1 Fixed Sliding Probes…………………………………………………….40

8.11.2 Adjustable Sliding Probes……………………………………………….40

8.12 Reference Standards………………………………………………………….41

8.13 Inspection Variables……………………………………………………………42

8.13.1 Liftoff signal Adjustment……………………………………………...42

8.13.2 Scan Patterns…………………………………………………………..42

8.13.3 Signal Interpretation…………………………………………...………42

8.13.4 Probe Scan Deviation…………………………………………………..43

8.13.5 Crack Angle Deviation…………………………………………………43

8.13.6 Electrical Contact……………………………………………………....44

8.14 Tube Inspection by Eddy Current…………………………….………………..44

8.15 Thickness Measurements of Thin Material…………………….……………….45

8.16 Corrosion Thinning of Aircraft Skins………………………….……………….45

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8.17 Thickness Measurement of Thin Conductive Sheet, Strip and Foil…….……...46

8.18 Thickness Measurement of Thin Conductive Layers…………………………..47

8.19 Pulsed Eddy Current Inspection……………………………………………….47

8.20 EC Standards and Methods…………………………………………………….48

9. Radiography Testing (RT)

9.1 History of Radiography…………………………………………………………50

9.2 A Second Source of Radiation…………………………………………………51

9.3 Health Concerns………………………………………………………………..52

9.4 Present State of Radiography……………………………………………….….53

9.5 Future Direction of Radiographic Education…………………………………..54

9.6 Properties of X-Rays and Gamma Rays………………………………………..55

9.6.1 X-Radiation……………………………………………………………..55

9.6.1 Bremsstrahlung Radiation………………………………………………56

9.6.1 Gamma Radiation……………………………………………………….57

9.7 Types Radiation Produced by Radioactive Decay………………………………57

9.7.1 Alpha Particles…………………………………………………………58

9.7.2 Beta Particles…………………………………………………………..58

9.7.3 Gamma-rays…………………………………………………………..58

9.8 Filters in Radiography………………………………………………………….58

9.9 Radiation Safety………………………………………………………………..59

9.10 Radiographic Film………………………………………………………………60

9.10.1 Film Selection………………………………………………………….61

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9.10.2 Film Packaging…………………………………………………………62

9.10.3 Film Handling………………………………………………………….63

9.10.4 Film Processing………………………………………………………..63

9.10.4.1 Manual Processing & Darkrooms…………………………..64

9.10.4.2 Automatic Processor Evaluation……………………………65

9.11 Radiograph Interpretation – Welds……………………………………………..65

9.12 Discontinuities…………………………………………………………………..66

9.13 Welding Discontinuities…………………………………………………………66

9.13.1 Cold Lap……………………………………………………………….66

9.13.2 Porosity………………………………………………………………...67

9.13.3 Cluster porosity…………………………………………………………67

9.13.4 Slag inclusions…………………………………………………………68

9.13.5 IP and LOP……………………………………………………………..69

9.13.6 Incomplete fusion………………………………………………………69

9.13.7 Internal concavity or suck back………………………………………..70

9.13.8 Internal or root undercut……………………………………………….70

9.13.9 External or crown undercut…………………………………………….71

9.13.10 Offset or mismatch…………………………………………………….72

9.13.11 Inadequate weld reinforcement………………………………………72

9.13.12 Excess weld reinforcement……………………………………………73

9.13.13 Cracks…………………………………………………………………73

9.13.14 Discontinuities in TIG welds………………………………………...74

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9.13.15 Tungsten inclusions…………………………………………………..74

9.13.16 Oxide inclusions……………………………………………………...74

9.13.17 Discontinuities in Gas Metal Arc Welds (GMAW)…………………..75

9.13.18 Burn-Through…………………………………………………………75

9.14 Real-time Radiography…………………………………………………………76

9.15 Advantages of Radiography……………………………………………………76


9.16 Disadvantages of Radiography…………………………………………………76
10. Ultrasonic Testing (UT)
10.1 Introduction of Ultrasonic Testing………………………………………………77

10.2 Basic Principles of Ultrasonic Testing…………………………………………..77

10.3 History of Ultrasonics…………………………………………………………..79

10.4 Present State of Ultrasonics…………………………………………………….80

10.5 Future Direction of Ultrasonic Inspection………………………………………82

10.6 Wavelength and Defect Detection………………………………………………83

10.7 Sound Propagation in Elastic Materials…………………………………………85

10.8 Speed of Sound…………………………………………………………………85

10.9 Applications of Non-Destructive Testing………………………………………..86

10.10 Piezoelectric Transducers……………………………………………………….88

10.11 Characteristics of Piezoelectric Transducers……………………………………90

10.12 Radiated Fields of Ultrasonic Transducers…………………………………….91

10.13 Transducer Types………………………………………………………………93

10.13.1 Contact Transducers…………………………………………………94

10.13.2 Immersion transducers……………………………………………….94

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10.13.3 More on Contact Transducers………………………………………..94

10.13.4 Dual element transducer…………………………………………….95

10.13.5 Delay line transducers……………………………………………….95

10.13.6 Angle beam transducers……………………………………………..96

10.13.7 Normal incidence shear wave transducers……………….………….96

10.13.8 Paint brush transducers……………………………………………...96

10.14 Couplant………………………………………………………………………..97

10.15 Pulser-Receivers………………………………………………………………..97

10.16 Angle Beams I………………………………………………………………….99

10.17 Angle Beams II………………………………………………………………….99

10.18 Calibration Methods……………………………………………………………100

10.19 Weldments (Welded Joints)……………………………………………………101

10.20 Advantages of Ultrasonic Flaw Detection…………………………………….103

10.21 Disadvantages of Ultrasonic Flaw Detection…………………………………104

11. Applications of Non-Destructive Testing………………………………104


11.1 Aerospace Industry……………………………………….………………….104
11.2 Aircraft Overhaul………………………………………………….…………104
11.3 Automotive Industry……………………………………………….………...104
11.4 Petrochemical & Gas Industries………………………………………….…..104
11.5 Railway Industry…………………………………………………….…..…...104
11.6 Mining Industry………………………………………………………….…...104
11.7 Agricultural Engineering. ………………………………………….………....104
11.8 Power Generation…………………………………………………………….105
11.9 Iron Foundry………………………………………………………………….105

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11.10 Shipbuilding Industry…………………………………………………………105


11.11 Steel Industry…………………………………………………………………105
11.12 Pipe & Tube Manufacturing Industry………………………………………...105

12. Recommendation…………………………………………………………………..105

13. Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………..106

4 References…………………………………………………………………………...106

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Executive Summary

Non-destructive testing in its present form has been carried out, by specialised service companies
and manufacturers, for decades. Röntgen Technische Dienst bv in The Netherlands was
established more than 60 years ago, in 1937, and that year marked the beginning of radiographic
inspection of welds in The Netherlands. Similar situations exist in other countries. In fact,
welding industry would not have experienced the growth and the wide range of applications it
has today if there were no such thing as NDT.

NDT has a very important formal status. Requirements for performance of NDT, acceptance
criteria and requirements for personnel qualification are implemented in codes and standards.
The NDT procedure is part of the contract. During the many years that NDT methods have been
used in industry a well-established situation has evolved, enabling the use of NDT for the
evaluation of welds against Good Workmanship Criteria on a routine basis, thus maintaining
workmanship standards and minimising the risks of component failure.

In addition, NDT plays an important part in industrial maintenance. During plant shutdowns for
instance, many thousands of ultrasonic wall thickness measurements are taken on piping, vessels,
furnace tubes etc. All these thickness readings have to go into extensive data bases, and this
process is, thanks to modern computers and data loggers, ever more automated.

The ultimate aim was, to find a way to accept and reject weld defects on the basis of their
significance for weld integrity. For let us be honest: in conventional NDT we are doing
something completely different. We base our judgement on density differences on a film, or on
echo amplitudes on a screen. Parameters that have very little to do indeed with significance of
defects for weld integrity.

In maintenance practice, we base our decisions on NDT that is performed during shutdowns. A
significant amount of money could be saved if we would have NDT methods that minimize the
time required for that shutdown, or, a step further.

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4. Introduction of Non-destructive Testing (NDT)


Non-destructive Testing is one part of the function of Quality Control and is complementary to
other long established methods. By definition non-destructive testing the use of noninvasive
techniques to determine the integrity of a material, component or structure or quantitatively
measure some characteristic of an object. It is the testing of materials, for surface or internal
flaws or metallurgical condition, without interfering in any way with the integrity of the material
or its suitability for service. The technique can be applied on a sampling basis for individual
investigation or may be used for 100% checking of material in a production quality control
system. Whilst being a high technology concept, evolution of the equipment has made it robust
enough for application in any industrial environment at any stage of manufacture - from steel
making to site inspection of components already in service. A certain degree of skill is required
to apply the techniques properly in order to obtain the maximum amount of information
concerning the product, with consequent feed back to the production facility. Non-destructive
Testing is not just a method for rejecting substandard material; it is also an assurance that the
supposedly good is good. The technique uses a variety of principles; there is no single method
around which a black box may be built to satisfy all requirements in all circumstances.
4.1 History of NDT
Nondestructive testing has been practiced for many decades, with initial rapid developments in
instrumentation spurred by the technological advances that occurred during World War II and
the subsequent defense effort. During the earlier days, the primary purpose was the detection of
defects. As a part of "safe life" design, it was intended that a structure should not develop
macroscopic defects during its life, with the detection of such defects being a cause for removal
of the component from service. In the early 1970's, two events occurred which caused a major
change in the NDT field. First, improvements in the technology led to the ability to detect small
flaws, which caused more parts to be rejected even though the probability of component failure
had not changed. However, the discipline of fracture mechanics emerged, which enabled one to
predict whether a crack of a given size will fail under a particular load when a material's fracture
toughness properties are known. Other laws were developed to predict the growth rate of cracks
under cyclic loading (fatigue). With the advent of these tools, it became possible to accept
structures containing defects if the sizes of those defects were known. This formed the basis for
the new philosophy of "damage tolerant" design. Components having known defects could

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continue in service as long as it could be established that those defects would not grow to a
critical, failure producing size.

A new challenge was thus presented to the nondestructive testing community. Detection was not
enough. One needed to also obtain quantitative information about flaw size to serve as an input
to fracture mechanics based predictions of remaining life. The need for quantitative information
was particularly strongly in the defense and nuclear power industries and led to the emergence of
quantitative nondestructive evaluation (QNDE) as a new engineering/research discipline. A
number of research programs around the world were started, such as the Center for
Nondestructive Evaluation at Iowa State University (growing out of a major research effort at the
Rockwell International Science Center); the Electric Power Research Institute in Charlotte, North
Carolina; the Fraunhofer Institute for Nondestructive Testing in Saarbrucken, Germany; and the
Nondestructive Testing Centre in Harwell, England.

4.3 Importance of NDT


NDT plays an important role in the quality control of a product. It is used during all the stages of
manufacturing of a product. It is used to monitor the quality of the:
1. Raw materials which are used in the construction of the product.
2. Fabrication processes which are used to manufacture the product.
3. Finished product before it is put into service.
Use of NDT during all stages of manufacturing results in the following benefits:
1. It increases the safety and reliability of the product during operation.
2. It decreases the cost of the product by reducing scrap and conserving materials, labor and
energy.
3. It enhances the reputation of the manufacturer as producer of quality goods. All of the
above factors boost the sales of the product which bring more economical benefits to the
manufacturer. NDT is also used widely for routine or periodic determination of quality of
the plants and structures during service. This not only increases the safety of operation
but also eliminates any forced shut down of the plants.

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4.5 NDT Methods

The number of NDT methods that can be used to inspect components and make measurements is
large and continues to grow. Researchers continue to find new ways of applying physics and
other scientific disciplines to develop better NDT methods.
The methods covered are:
 Visual Testing
 Microwave
 Thermography
 Magnetic Particle Testing
 Tap Testing
 Radiography Testing
 Acoustic Microscopy
 Acoustic Emission
 Magnetic Measurements
 Ultrasonic Testing
 Flux Leakage
 Laser Interferometry
 Eddy Current
 Dye Penetrant Testing

4.6 Six Most Common NDT Methods


There are six NDT methods that are used most often. They are
1. Visual and Optical Testing (VT)
2. Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT)
3. Magnetic Particle Testing(MPT)
4. Eddy Current Testing(ECT)
5. Radiography Testing (RT)
6. Ultrasonic Testing (UT)

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4.6.1 Visual and Optic Testing (VT)


Visual inspection involves using an inspector's eyes to look for defects. The inspector may also
use special tools such as magnifying glasses, mirrors, or borescopes to gain access and more
closely inspect the subject area. Visual examiners follow procedures that range from simple to
very complex.
4.6.2 Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT)
Test objects are coated with visible or fluorescent dye solution. Excess dye is then removed from
the surface, and a developer is applied. The developer acts as blotter, drawing trapped penetrant
out of imperfections open to the surface. With visible dyes, vivid color contrasts between the
penetrant and developer make "bleedout" easy to see. With fluorescent dyes, ultraviolet light is
used to make the bleedout fluoresce brightly, thus allowing imperfections to be readily seen.

4.6.3 Magnetic Particle Testing (MPT)

This NDT method is accomplished by inducing a magnetic field in a ferromagnetic material and
then dusting the surface with iron particles (either dry or suspended in liquid). Surface and near-
surface imperfections distort the magnetic field and concentrate iron particles near imperfections,
previewing a visual indication of the flaw.

4.6.4 Eddy Current Testing (ECT)

Electrical currents are generated in a conductive material by an induced alternating magnetic


field. The electrical currents are called eddy currents because they flow in circles at and just
below the surface of the material. Interruptions in the flow of eddy currents, caused by
imperfections, dimensional changes, or changes in the materials conductive and permeability
properties, can be detected with the proper equipment.

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4.6.5 Radiography Testing (RT)

Radiography involves the use of penetrating gamma or X-radiation to examine parts and
products for imperfections. An X-ray generator or radioactive isotope is used as a source of
radiation. Radiation is directed through a part and onto film or other imaging media. The
resulting shadowgraph shows the dimensional features of the part. Possible imperfections are
indicated as density changes on the film in the same manner as medical X-ray shows broken
bones.

4.6.6 Ultrasonic Testing (UT)

Ultrasonic use transmission of high-frequency sound waves into a material to detect


imperfections or to locate changes in material properties. The most commonly used ultrasonic
testing technique is pulse echo, wherein sound is introduced into a test object and reflections
(echoes) are returned to a receiver from internal imperfections or from the part's geometrical
surfaces.

5. Visual Testing (VT)

5.1 Introduction of Visual Testing


Visual inspection is by far the most common nondestructive testing (NDT) technique. When
attempting to determine the soundness of any part or specimen for its intended application, visual
inspection is normally the first step in the examination process. Generally, almost any specimen
can be visually examined to determine the accuracy of its fabrication. For example, visual
inspection can be used to determine whether the part was fabricated to the correct size, whether
the part is complete, or whether all of the parts have been appropriately incorporated into the
device. While direct visual inspection is the most common nondestructive testing technique,
many other NDT methods require visual intervention to interpret images obtained while carrying
out the examination. For instance, penetrant inspection using visible red or fluorescent dye relies
on the inspector‘s ability to visually identify surface indications. In arriving at a definition of
visual inspection, it has been noted in the literature that experience in visual inspection and
discussion with experienced visual inspectors revealed that this NDT method includes more than

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use of the eye, but also includes other sensory and cognitive processes used by inspectors. Thus,
there is now an expanded definition of visual inspection in the literature:
―Visual inspection is the process of examination and evaluation of systems and components by
use of human sensory systems aided only by mechanical enhancements to sensory input as
magnifiers, dental picks, stethoscopes, and the like. The inspection process may be done using
such behaviors as looking, listening, feeling, smelling, shaking, and twisting. It included a
cognitive component wherein observations are correlated with knowledge of structure and with
descriptions and diagrams from service literature.‖ The human eye is one of mankind‘s most
fascinating tools and is capable of assessing many visual characteristics and identifying various
types of discontinuities.

5.2 Physical Principle


The human eye is one of mankind‘s most fascinating tools. It has greater precision and accuracy
than many of the most sophisticated cameras. It has unique focusing capabilities and has the
ability to work in conjunction with the human brain so that it can be trained to find specific
details or characteristics in a part or test piece. It has the ability to differentiate and distinguish
between colors and hues as well. The human eye is capable of assessing many visual
characteristics and identifying various types of discontinuities. The eye can perform accurate
inspections to detect size, shape, color, depth, brightness, contrast, and texture. Visual testing is
essentially used to detect any visible discontinuities, and in many cases, visual testing may locate
portions of a specimen that should be inspected further by other NDT techniques. Many
inspection factors have been standardized so that categorizing them as major and minor
characteristics has become common. Surface finish verification of machined parts has even been
developed, and classification can be performed by visual comparison to manufactured finish
standards. In the fabrication industry, weld size, contour, length, and inspection for surface
discontinuities are routinely specified many companies have mandated the need for qualified and
certified visual weld inspection. This is the case particularly in the power industry, which
requires documentation of training and qualification of the inspector. Forgings and castings are
normally inspected for surface indications such as laps, seams, and other various surface
conditions.
5.3 Inspection Requirements

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Requirements for visual inspection typically pertain to the vision of the inspector; the amount of
light falling on the specimen, which can be measured with a light meter; and whether the area
being inspected is in anyway obstructed from view.In many cases, each of these requirements is
detailed in regulatory code or other inspection criteria.
Mechanical and/or optical aids may be necessary to perform visual testing. Because visual
inspection is so frequently used, several companies now manufacture gages to assist visual
inspection examinations. Mechanical aids include: measuring rules and tapes, calipers and
micrometers, squares and angle measuring devices, thread, pitch and thickness gages, level
gages, and plumb lines. Welding fabrication uses fillet gages to determine the width of the weld
fillet, undercut gages, angle gages, skew fillet weld gages, pit gages, contour gages, and a host of
other specialty items to ensure product quality.
At times direct observation is impossible and remote viewing is necessary which requires the use
of optical aids. Optical aids for visual testing range from simple mirrors or magnifying glasses to
sophisticated devices, such as closed circuit television and coupled fiber optic scopes. The
following list includes most optical aids currently in use :
 Mirrors (especially small, angled mirrors).
 Magnifying glasses, eye loupes, multilens magnifiers, measuring magnifiers.
 Microscopes (optical and electron).
 Optical flats (for surface flatness measurement).
 Borescopes and fiber optic borescopes.
 Optical comparators.
 Photographic records
 Closed circuit television (CCTV) systems (alone and coupled to
borescopes/microscopes).
 Machine vision systems.
 Positioning and transport systems (often used with CCTV systems).
 Image enhancement (computer analysis and enhancement).

5.4 Practical Considerations

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Visual inspection is applicable to most surfaces, but is most effective where the surfaces have
been cleaned prior to examination, for example, any scale or loose paint should be removed by
wire brushing, etc. Vision testing of an inspector often requires eye examinations with standard
vision acuity cards such as Jaeger, Snellen, and color charts. Vision testing of inspectors has
been in use for about 40 years. Although many changes in NDT methods have taken place over
the years and new technologies have been developed, vision testing has changed little over time.
Also little has been done to standardize vision tests used in the industrial sector. For those
seeking certification in the area of visual testing, (Visual and Optical Testing) provides a useful
reference.

6. Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT)

6.1 Introduction Dye Penetrant Testing

This method is frequently used for the detection of surface breaking flaws in non ferromagnetic
materials. The subject to be examined is first of all chemically cleaned, usually by vapors phase,
to remove all traces of foreign material, grease, dirt, etc.
from the surface generally, and also from within the
cracks. Next the penetrant (which is a very fine thin oil
usually dyed bright red or ultra-violet fluorescent) is
applied and allowed to remain in contact with the
surface for approximately fifteen minutes. Capillary
action draws the penetrant into the crack during this
period. The surplus penetrant on the surface is then
removed completely and thin coating of powdered chalk

is applied. After a further period (development time) the chalk Fig: Dye Penetrant Testing
draws the dye out of the crack, rather like blotting paper, to form a
visual, magnified in width, indication in good contrast to the background. The process is purely a
mechanical/chemical one and the various substances used may be applied in a large variety of
ways, from aerosol spray cans at the most simple end to dipping in large tanks on an automatic
basis at the other end. The latter system requires sophisticated tanks, spraying and drying

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equipment but the principle remains the same. Dye Penetrant Testing is a method that is used to
reveal surface breaking flaws by bleedout of a colored or fluorescent dye from the flaw. The
technique is based on the ability of a liquid to be drawn into a "clean" surface breaking flaw by
capillary action. After a period of time called the "dwell," excess surface penetrant is removed
and a developer applied. This acts as a blotter. It draws the penetrant from the flaw to reveal its
presence. Colored (contrast) penetrants require good white light while fluorescent penetrants
need to be used in darkened conditions with an ultraviolet "black light".

6.2 History of Dye Penetrant Testing

A very early surface inspection technique involved the rubbing of carbon black on glazed
pottery, whereby the carbon black would settle in surface cracks rendering them visible. Later, it
became the practice in railway workshops to examine iron and steel components by the "oil and
whiting" method. In this method, a heavy oil commonly available in railway workshops was
diluted with kerosene in large tanks so that locomotive parts such as wheels could be submerged.
After removal and careful cleaning, the surface was then coated with a fine suspension of chalk
in alcohol so that a white surface layer was formed once the alcohol had evaporated. The object
was then vibrated by being struck with a hammer, causing the residual oil in any surface cracks
to seep out and stain the white coating. This method was in use from the latter part of the 19th
century to approximately 1940, when the magnetic particle method was introduced and found to
be more sensitive for ferromagnetic iron and steels. A different (though related) method was
introduced in the 1940's. The surface under examination was coated with a lacquer, and after
drying, the sample was caused to vibrate by the tap of a hammer. The vibration causes the brittle
lacquer layer to crack generally around surface defects.

6.3 DPT for Detectability of Flaws

The advantage that a Dye Penetrant Testing (DPT) offers over an unaided visual inspection is
that it makes defects easier to see for the inspector. There are basically two ways that a penetrant
inspection process makes flaws more easily seen. First, DPT produces a flaw indication that is
much larger and easier for the eye to detect than the flaw itself. Many flaws are so small or
narrow that they are undetectable by the unaided eye. Due to the physical features of the eye,

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there is a threshold below which objects cannot be resolved. This threshold of visual acuity is
around 0.003 inch for a person with 20/20 vision.The second way that DPT improves the
detectability of a flaw is that it produces a flaw indication with a high level of contrast between
the indication and the background also heDPTng to make the indication more easily seen. When
a visible dye penetrant inspection is performed, the penetrant materials are formulated using a
bright red dye that provides for a high level of contrast between the white developer. In other
words, the developer serves as a high contrast background as well as a blotter to pull the trapped
penetrant from the flaw. When a fluorescent penetrant inspection is performed, the penetrant
materials are formulated to glow brightly and to give off light at a wavelength that the eye is
most sensitive to under dim lighting conditions.

6.4 Process for Dye Pretrant Testing

1. Surface Preparation: One of the most critical steps of a Dye Penetrant Testing is the
surface preparation. The surface must be free of oil, grease, water, or other contaminants
that may prevent penetrant from entering flaws. The sample may also require etching if
mechanical operations such as machining, sanding, or grit blasting have been performed.
These and other mechanical operations can smear metal over the flaw opening and
prevent the penetrant from entering.
2. Penetrant Application: Once the surface has been thoroughly cleaned and dried, the
penetrant material is applied by spraying, brushing, or immersing the part in a penetrant
bath.
3. Penetrant Dwell: The penetrant is left on the surface for a sufficient time to allow as
much penetrant as possible to be drawn from or to seep into a defect. Penetrant dwell
time is the total time that the penetrant is in contact with the part surface. Dwell times are
usually recommended by the penetrant producers or required by the specification being
followed. The times vary depending on the application, penetrant materials used, the
material, the form of the material being inspected, and the type of defect being inspected
for. Minimum dwell times typically range from five to 60 minutes. Generally, there is no
harm in using a longer penetrant dwell time as long as the penetrant is not allowed to dry.

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4. Excess Penetrant Removal: This is the most delicate part of the inspection procedure
because the excess penetrant must be removed from the surface of the sample while
removing as little penetrant as possible from defects. Depending on the penetrant system
used, this step may involve cleaning with a solvent, direct rinsing with water, or first
treating the part with an emulsifier and then rinsing with water.
5. Developer Application: A thin layer of developer is then applied to the sample to draw
penetrant trapped in flaws back to the surface where it will be visible. Developers come
in a variety of forms that may be applied by dusting (dry powdered), dipping, or spraying
(wet developers).

6. Indication Development: The developer is allowed to stand on the part surface for a
period of time sufficient to permit the extraction of the trapped penetrant out of any
surface flaws. This development time is usually a minimum of 10 minutes. Significantly
longer times may be necessary for tight cracks.

7. Inspection: Inspection is then performed under appropriate lighting to detect indications


from any flaws which may be present.

8. Clean Surface: The final step in the process is to thoroughly clean the part surface to
remove the developer from the parts that were found to be acceptable.

6.5 Common Uses of Dye Penetrant Testing

Dye penetrant Testing (DPT) is one of the most widely used


nondestructive Testing (NDT) methods. Its popularity can be
attributed to two main factors: its relative ease of use and its
flexibility. DPT can be used to inspect almost any material
provided that its surface is not extremely rough or porous.
Materials that are commonly inspected using DPT include the
following:

 Metals (aluminum, copper, steel, titanium, etc.)

 Glass

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 Many ceramic materials

 Rubber

 Plastics

DPT offers flexibility in performing inspections because it can be applied in a large variety of
applications ranging from automotive spark plugs to critical aircraft components. Penetrant
materials can be applied with a spray can or a cotton swab to inspect for flaws known to occur in
a specific area or it can be applied by dipping or spraying to quickly inspect large areas. In the
image above, visible dye penetrant is being locally applied to a highly loaded connecting point to
check for fatigue cracking.

Dye Penetrant Testing can only be used to inspect for flaws that break the surface of the sample.
Some of these flaws are listed below:

 Fatigue cracks

 Quench cracks

 Grinding cracks

 Overload and impact fractures

 Porosity

 Laps

 Seams

 Pin holes in welds

 Lack of fusion or braising along the edge of the bond line

As mentioned above, one of the major limitations of a penetrant inspection is that flaws must be
open to the surface. To learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of DPT, proceed to
the next page.

6.6 Effectiveness of Dye Penetrant Testing

 small round defects than small linear defects. Small round defects are generally easier
to detect for several reasons. First, they are typically volumetric defects that can trap
significant amounts of penetrant. Second, round defects fill with penetrant faster than

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linear defects. One research effort found that elliptical flaw with length to width ratio of
100, will take the penetrant nearly 10 times longer to fill than a cylindrical flaw with the
same volume.
 deeper flaws than shallow flaws. Deeper flaws will trap more penetrant than shallow
flaws, and they are less prone to over washing.
 flaws with a narrow opening at the surface than wide open flaws. Flaws with narrow
surface openings are less prone to over washing.
 flaws on smooth surfaces than on rough surfaces. The surface roughness of the part
primarily affects the removability of a penetrant. Rough surfaces tend to trap more
penetrant in the various tool marks, scratches, and pits that make up the surface.
 flaws with rough fracture surfaces than smooth fracture surfaces. The surface
roughness that the fracture faces is a factor in the speed at which a penetrant enters a
defect. In general, the penetrant spreads faster over a surface as the surface roughness
increases. It should be noted that a particular penetrant may spread slower than others on
a smooth surface but faster than the rest on a rougher surface.
 flaws under tensile or no loading than flaws under compression loading. In a 1987
study at the University College London, the effect of crack closure on detectability was
evaluated. Researchers used a four-point bend fixture to place tension and compression
loads on specimens that were fabricated to contain fatigue cracks. All cracks were
detected with no load and with tensile loads placed on the parts. However, as
compressive loads were placed on the parts, the crack length steadily decreased as load
increased until a load was reached when the crack was no longer detectable.

6.7 Advantages of Dye Penetrant Testing

 The method has high sensitivity to small surface discontinuities.


 The method has few material limitations, i.e. metallic and nonmetallic, magnetic and
nonmagnetic, and conductive and nonconductive materials may be inspected.
 Large areas and large volumes of parts/materials can be inspected rapidly and at low cost.
 Parts with complex geometric shapes are routinely inspected.

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 Indications are produced directly on the surface of the part and constitute a visual
representation of the flaw.
 Aerosol spray cans make penetrant materials very portable.
 Penetrant materials and associated equipment are relatively inexpensive.

6.8 Disadvantages of Dye Penetrant Testing

 Only surface breaking defects can be detected.


 Only materials with a relatively nonporous surface can be inspected.
 Precleaning is critical since contaminants can mask defects.
 Metal smearing from machining, grinding, and grit or vapor blasting must be removed
prior to LPI.
 The inspector must have direct access to the surface being inspected.
 Surface finish and roughness can affect inspection sensitivity.
 Multiple process operations must be performed and controlled.
 Post cleaning of acceptable parts or materials is required.
 Chemical handling and proper disposal is required.

7. Magnetic Particle Testing

7.1 Introduction of Magnetic Particle Testing

This method is suitable for the detection of surface and near surface discontinuities in magnetic
material, mainly ferrite steel and iron. Magnetic particle Testing (MPI) is a nondestructive
testing method used for defect detection. MPI is fast and relatively easy to apply, and part
surface preparation is not as critical as it is for some other NDT methods. These characteristics
make MPI one of the most widely utilized nondestructive testing methods. MPI uses magnetic
fields and small magnetic particles (i.e.iron filings) to detect flaws in components. The only
requirement from an inspectability standpoint is that the component being inspected must be
made of a ferromagnetic material such as iron, nickel, cobalt, or some of their alloys.
Ferromagnetic materials are materials that can be magnetized to a level that will allow the
inspection to be effective. The method is used to inspect a variety of product forms including

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castings, forgings, and weldments. Many different industries use magnetic particle inspection for
determining a component's fitness-for-use. Some examples of industries that use magnetic
particle inspection are the structural steel, automotive, petrochemical, power generation, and
aerospace industries. Underwater inspection is another area where magnetic particle inspection
may be used to test items such as offshore structures and underwater pipelines.

7.2 History of Magnetic Particle Testing

Magnetism is the ability of matter to attract other matter to itself. The ancient Greeks were the
first to discover this phenomenon in a mineral they named magnetite. Later on Bergmann,
Becquerel, and Faraday discovered that all matter including liquids and gasses were affected by
magnetism, but only a few responded to a noticeable extent.

The earliest known use of magnetism to inspect an object took place as early as 1868. Cannon
barrels were checked for defects by magnetizing the barrel then sliding a magnetic compass
along the barrel's length. These early inspectors were able to locate flaws in the barrels by
monitoring the needle of the compass. This was a form of nondestructive testing but the term
was not commonly used until sometime after World War I.

In the early 1920‘s, William Hoke realized that magnetic particles (colored metal shavings)
could be used with magnetism as a means of locating defects. Hoke discovered that a surface or
subsurface flaw in a magnetized material caused the magnetic field to distort and extend beyond
the part. This discovery was brought to his attention in the machine shop. He noticed that the
metallic grindings from hard steel parts (held by a magnetic chuck while being ground) formed
patterns on the face of the parts which corresponded to the cracks in the surface. Applying a fine
ferromagnetic powder to the parts caused a build up of powder over flaws and formed a visible
indication. The image shows a 1928 Electyro-Magnetic Steel Testing Device (MPI) made by the
Equipment and Engineering Company Ltd. (ECO) of Strand, England.

In the early 1930‘s, magnetic particle inspection was quickly replacing the oil-and-whiting
method (an early form of the liquid penetrant inspection) as the method of choice by the railroad
industry to inspect steam engine boilers, wheels, axles, and tracks. Today, the MPI inspection

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method is used extensively to check for flaws in a large variety of manufactured materials and
components. MPI is used to check materials such as steel bar stock for seams and other flaws
prior to investing machining time during the manufacturing of a component. Critical automotive
components are inspected for flaws after fabrication to ensure that defective parts are not placed
into service. MPI is used to inspect some highly loaded components that have been in-service for
a period of time. For example, many components of high performance racecars are inspected
whenever the engine, drive train or another system undergoes an overhaul. MPI is also used to
evaluate the integrity of structural welds on bridges, storage tanks, and other safety critical
structures.

7.3 Basic Principles

In theory, magnetic particle inspection (MPI) is a relatively simple concept. It can be considered
as a combination of two nondestructive testing methods: magnetic flux leakage testing and visual
testing. Consider the case of a bar magnet. It has a
magnetic field in and around the magnet. Any place that
a magnetic line of force exits or enters the magnet is
called a pole. A pole where a magnetic line of force exits
the magnet is called a north pole and a pole where a line of force enters the magnet is called a
south pole.

When a bar magnet is broken in the center of its length, two complete bar magnets with magnetic
poles on each end of each piece will result. If the magnet is just cracked but not broken
completely in two, a north and south pole will form at
each edge of the crack. The magnetic field exits the
north pole and reenters at the south pole. The magnetic
field spreads out when it encounters the small air gap
created by the crack because the air cannot support as
much magnetic field per unit volume as the magnet can.
When the field spreads out, it appears to leak out of the
material and, thus is called a flux leakage field.

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If iron particles are sprinkled on a cracked magnet, the particles will be attracted to and cluster
not only at the poles at the ends of the magnet, but also at the poles at the edges of the crack.
This cluster of particles is much easier to see than the actual crack and this is the basis for
magnetic particle inspection.

The first step in a magnetic particle inspection is to magnetize the component that is to be
inspected. If any defects on or near the surface are present, the defects will create a leakage field.
After the component has been magnetized, iron particles, either in a dry or wet suspended form,
are applied to the surface of the magnetized part. The particles will be attracted and cluster at the
flux leakage fields, thus forming a visible indication that the inspector can detect.

7.4 Magnetic Field Orientation and Flaw Detectability

To properly inspect a component for cracks or other defects, it is important to understand that the
orientation between the magnetic lines of force and the flaw is very important. There are two
general types of magnetic fields that can be established within a component.

A longitudinal magnetic field has magnetic lines of force that run


parallel to the long axis of the part. Longitudinal magnetization of a
component can be accomplished using the longitudinal field set up
by a coil or solenoid. It can also be accomplished using permanent
magnets or electromagnets.

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A circular magnetic field has magnetic lines of force that run


circumferentially around the perimeter of a part. A circular magnetic
field is induced in an article by either passing current through the
component or by passing current through a conductor surrounded by
the component.

The type of magnetic field established is determined by the method used to magnetize the
specimen. Being able to magnetize the part in two directions is important because the best
detection of defects occurs when the lines of magnetic force are established at right angles to the
longest dimension of the defect. This orientation creates the largest disruption of the magnetic
field within the part and the greatest flux leakage at the surface of the part. As can be seen in the
image below, if the magnetic field is parallel to the defect, the field will see little disruption and
no flux leakage field will be produced.

An orientation of 45 to 90 degrees between the magnetic field and the defect is necessary to form
an indication. Since defects may occur in various and unknown directions, each part is normally
magnetized in two directions at right angles to each other. If the component below is considered,
it is known that passing current through the part from end to end will establish a circular
magnetic field that will be 90 degrees to the direction of the current. Therefore, defects that have
a significant dimension in the direction of the current (longitudinal defects) should be detectable.
Alternately, transverse-type defects will not be detectable with circular magnetization.

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7.5 Portable Equipments for Magnetic Particle Testing

To properly inspect a part for cracks or other defects, it is important to become familiar with the
different types of magnetic fields and the equipment used to generate them. As discussed
previously, one of the primary requirements for detecting a defect in a ferromagnetic material is
that the magnetic field induced in the part must intercept the defect at a 45 to 90 degree angle.
Flaws that are normal (90 degrees) to the magnetic field will produce the strongest indications
because they disrupt more of the magnet flux.

Therefore, for proper inspection of a component, it is important to be able to establish a magnetic


field in at least two directions. A variety of equipment
exists to establish the magnetic field for MPI. One way
to classify equipment is based on its portability. Some
equipment is designed to be portable so that inspections
can be made in the field and some is designed to be
stationary for ease of inspection in the laboratory or
manufacturing facility.

7.6 Permanent magnets

Permanent magnets are sometimes used for magnetic


particle inspection as the source of magnetism. The two
primary types of permanent magnets are bar magnets and
horseshoe (yoke) magnets. These industrial magnets are

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usually very strong and may require significant strength to remove them from a piece of metal.
Some permanent magnets require over 50 pounds of force to remove them from the surface.
Because it is difficult to remove the magnets from the component being inspected, and
sometimes difficult and dangerous to place the magnets, their use is not particularly popular.
However, permanent magnets are sometimes used by divers for inspection in underwater
environments or other areas, such as explosive environments, where electromagnets cannot be
used. Permanent magnets can also be made small enough to fit into tight areas where
electromagnets might not fit.

7.7 Electromagnets
Today, most of the equipment used to create
the magnetic field used in MPI is based on
electromagnetism. That is, using an
electrical current to produce the magnetic
field. An electromagnetic yoke is a very
common piece of equipment that is used to
establish a magnetic field. It is basically
made by wrapping an electrical coil around
a piece of soft ferromagnetic steel. A switch
is included in the electrical circuit so that the
current and, therefore, the magnetic field can be turned on and off. They can be powered with
alternating current from a wall socket or by direct current from a battery pack. This type of
magnet generates a very strong magnetic field in a local area where the poles of the magnet
touch the part being inspected. Some yokes can lift weights in excess of 40 pounds.

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P P
ortable yoke with battery pack ortable magnetic particle kit

7.8 Prods
Prods are handheld electrodes that are pressed
against the surface of the component being
inspected to make contact for passing electrical
current through the metal. The current passing
between the prods creates a circular magnetic field
around the prods that can be used in magnetic
particle inspection. Prods are typically made from
copper and have an insulated handle to help protect
the operator. One of the prods has a trigger switch
so that the current can be quickly and easily turned
on and off. Sometimes the two prods are connected by any insulator (as shown in the image) to
facilitate one hand operation. This is referred to as a dual prod and is commonly used for weld
inspections.

If proper contact is not maintained between the prods and the component surface, electrical
arcing can occur and cause damage to the component. For this reason, the use of prods are not
allowed when inspecting aerospace and other critical components. To help prevent arcing, the
prod tips should be inspected frequently to ensure that they are not oxidized, covered with scale
or other contaminant, or damaged.

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The following applet shows two prods used to create a current through a conducting part. The
resultant magnetic field roughly depicts the patterns expected from an magnetic particle
inspection of an unflawed surface. The user is encouraged to manipulate the prods to orient the
magnetic field to "cut across" suspected defects.

7.9 Portable Coils and Conductive Cables

Coils and conductive cables are used to establish a longitudinal magnetic field within a
component. When a preformed coil is used, the component is placed against the inside surface on
the coil. Coils typically have three or five turns of a copper cable within the molded frame. A
foot switch is often used to energize the coil. Conductive cables are wrapped around the
component. The cable used is typically 00 extra flexible or 0000 extra flexible. The number of
wraps is determined by the magnetizing force needed and of course, the length of the cable.
Normally, the wraps are kept as close together as possible. When using a coil or cable wrapped
into a coil, amperage is usually expressed in ampere-turns. Ampere-turns is the amperage shown
on the amp meter times the number of turns in the coil.

Portable Coil Conductive Cable

7.10 Portable Power Supplies

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Portable power supplies are used to provide the necessary electricity to the prods, coils or cables.
Power supplies are commercially available in a variety of sizes. Small power supplies generally
provide up to 1,500A of half-wave direct current or alternating current when used with a 4.5
meter 0000 cable. They are small and light enough to be carried and operate on either 120V or
240V electrical service. When more power is necessary, mobile power supplies can be used.
These units come with wheels so that they can be rolled where needed. These units also operate
on 120V or 240V electrical service and can provide up to 6,000A of AC or half-wave DC.

7.11 Lights for Magnetic Particle Inspection

Magnetic particle inspection can be performed using


particles that are highly visible under white light
conditions or particles that are highly visible under
ultraviolet light conditions. When an inspection is
being performed using the visible color contrast
particles, no special lighting is required as long as
the area of inspection is well lit. A light intensity of
at least 1000 lux (100 fc) is recommended when
visible particles are used, but a variety of light
sources can be used. When fluorescent particles are
used, special ultraviolet light must be used.
Fluorescenc e is defined as the property of emitting
radiation as a result of and during exposure to radiation. Particles used in fluorescent magnetic
particle inspections are coated with a material that produces light in the visible spectrum when
exposed to near-ultraviolet light. This "particle glow" provides high contrast indications on the
component anywhere particles collect. Particles that fluoresce yellow-green are most common
because this color matches the peak sensitivity of the human eye under dark conditions.
However, particles that fluoresce red, blue, yellow, and green colors are available.

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7.12 Dry Particle Inspection

In this magnetic particle testing technique, dry particles are


dusted onto the surface of the test object as the item is
magnetized. Dry particle inspection is well suited for the
inspections conducted on rough surfaces. When an
electromagnetic yoke is used, the AC or half wave DC
current creates a pulsating magnetic field that provides
mobility to the powder. The primary applications for dry
powders are unground welds and rough as-cast surfaces.

Dry particle inspection is also used to detect shallow


subsurface cracks. Dry particles with half wave DC is the
best approach when inspecting for lack of root penetration
in welds of thin materials. Half wave DC with prods and
dry particles is commonly used when inspecting large castings for hot tears and cracks.

7.13 Examples of Dry Magnetic Particle Inspection

One of the advantages that a magnetic particle inspection has over some of the other
nondestructive evaluation methods is that flaw indications generally resemble the actual flaw.
This is not the case with NDT methods such as ultrasonic and eddy current inspection, where an
electronic signal must be interpreted. When magnetic particle inspection is used, cracks on the
surface of the part appear as sharp lines that follow the path of the crack. Flaws that exist below
the surface of the part are less defined and more difficult to detect. Below are some examples of
magnetic particle indications produced using dry particles.

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Fig: Before and after inspection pictures of cracks emanating from a hole

7.14 Advantages of Magnetic Particle Testing


(1) It does not need very stringent pre-cleaning operation.
(2) Best method for the detection of fine, shallow surface cracks in ferromagnetic material.
(3) Fast and relatively simple NDT method.
(4) Generally inexpensive.
(5) Will work through thin coating.
(6) Few limitations regarding the size/shape of test specimens.
(7) Highly portable NDT method.
(8) It is quicker.
(9) Simplicity of operation and application.
7.15 Disadvantages of Magnetic Particle Testing
(1) Material must be ferromagnetic.
(2) Orientation and strength of magnetic field is critical.
(3) Detects surface and near-to-surface discontinuities only.
(4) Large currents sometimes required.
(5) ―Burning‖ of test parts a possibility.
(6) Parts must often be demagnetized, which may be difficult.

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8. Eddy Current Testing (ECT)

8.1 Introduction of Eddy Current Testing

This method is widely used to detect surface flaws, to sort materials, to measure thin walls from
one surface only, to measure thin coatings and in some applications to measure case depth. This
method is applicable to electrically conductive materials only. In the method eddy currents are
produced in the product by bringing it close to an alternating current carrying coil. The main
applications of the eddy current technique are for the detection of surface or subsurface flaws,
conductivity measurement and coating thickness measurement. The technique is sensitive to the
material conductivity, permeability and dimensions of a product. Eddy currents can be produced
in any electrically conducting material that is subjected to an alternating magnetic field (typically
10Hz to 10MHz). The alternating magnetic field is normally generated by passing an alternating
current through a coil. The coil can have many shapes and can between 10 and 500 turns of wire.
The magnitude of the eddy currents generated in the product is dependent on conductivity,
permeability and the set up geometry. Any change in the material or geometry can be detected by
the excitation coil as a change in the coil impedance. The most simple coil comprises a ferrite
rod with several turns of wire wound at one end and which is positioned close to the surface of
the product to be tested. When a crack, for example, occurs in the product surface the eddy
currents must travel farther around the crack and this is detected by the impedance change.

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8.2 History of Eddy Current Testing

Eddy Current testing has its origins with Michael


Faraday's discovery of electromagnetic induction in
1831. Faraday was a chemist in England during the
early 1800's and is credited with the discovery of
electromagnetic induction, electromagnetic rotations,
the magneto-optical effect, diamagnetism, and other
phenomena. In 1879, another scientist named
Hughes recorded changes in the properties of a coil
when placed in contact with metals of different
conductivity and permeability. However, it was not
until the Second World War that these effects were
put to practical use for testing materials. Much work
was done in the 1950's and 60's, particularly in the
aircraft and nuclear industries. Eddy current testing
is now a widely used and well-understood inspection technique.

8.3 Present State of Eddy Current Inspection

Eddy current inspection is used in a variety of


industries to find defects and make
measurements. One of the primary uses of eddy
current testing is for defect detection when the
nature of the defect is well understood. In
general, the technique is used to inspect a
relatively small area and the probe design and
test parameters must be established with a good
understanding of the flaw that is to be detected.
Since eddy currents tend to concentrate at the
surface of Eddy current inspection is used in a

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variety of industries to find defects and make measurements. One of the primary uses of eddy
current testing is for defect detection when the nature of the defect is well understood. In general,
the technique is used to inspect a relatively small area and the probe design and test parameters
must be established with a good understanding of the flaw that is to be detected. Since eddy
currents tend to concentrate at the surface of a material, they can only be used to detect surface
and near surface defects. In thin materials such as tubing and sheet stock, eddy currents can be
used to measure the thickness of the material. This makes eddy current a useful tool for detecting
corrosion damage and other damage that causes a thinning of the material. The technique is used
to make corrosion thinning measurements on aircraft skins and in the walls of tubing used in
assemblies such as heat exchangers. Eddy current testing is also used to measure the thickness of
paints and other coatings.

Eddy currents are also affected by the electrical conductivity and magnetic permeability of
materials. Therefore, eddy current measurements can be used to sort materials and to tell if a
material has seen high temperatures or been heat treated, which changes the conductivity of
some materials.

Eddy current equipment and probes can be purchased in a wide variety of configurations.
Eddyscopes and a conductivity tester come packaged in very small and battery operated units for
easy portability. Computer based systems are also available that provide easy data manipulation
features for the laboratory. Signal processing software has also been developed for trend
removal, background subtraction, and noise reduction. Impedance analyzers are also sometimes
used to allow improved quantitative eddy-current measurements. Some laboratories have
multidimensional scanning capabilities that are used to produce images of the scan regions. A
few portable scanning systems also exist for special applications, such as scanning regions of
aircraft fuselages.

8.4 Research to Improve Eddy current measurements

A great deal of research continues to be done to improve eddy current measurement techniques.
A few of these activities, which are being conducted at Iowa State University, are described
below.

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8.4.1 Photoinductive Imaging (PI)

A technique known as photoinductive imaging (PI) was pioneered at CNDE and provides a
powerful, high-resolution scanning and imaging tool. Microscopic resolution is available using
standard-sized eddy-current sensors. Development of probes and instrumentation for
photoinductive (PI) imaging is based on the use of a medium-power (5 W nominal power) argon
ion laser. This probe provides high resolution images and has been used to study cracks, welds,
and diffusion bonds in metallic specimens. The PI technique is being studied as a way to image
local stress variations in steel.

8.4.2 Pulse Eddy Current

Research is currently being conducted on the use of a technique called pulsed eddy current
(PEC) testing. This technique can be used for the detection and quantification of corrosion and
cracking in multi-layer aluminum aircraft structures. Pulsed eddy-current signals consist of a
spectrum of frequencies meaning that, because of the skin effect, each pulse signal contains
information from a range of depths within a given test specimen. In addition, the pulse signals
are very low-frequency rich which provides excellent depth penetration. Unlike multi-frequency
approaches, the pulse-signals lend themselves to convenient analysis. .

Measurements have been carried out both in the laboratory and in the field. Corrosion trials have
demonstrated how material loss can be detected and quantified in multi-layer aluminum
structures. More recently, studies carried out on three and four layer structures show the ability
to locate cracks emerging from fasteners. Pulsed eddy-current measurements have also been
applied to ferromagnetic materials. Recent work has been involved with measuring the case
depth in hardened steel samples.

8.5 Eddy Current Instruments

Eddy current instruments can be purchased in a


large variety of configurations. Both analog and
digital instruments are available. Instruments are

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commonly classified by the type of display used to present the data. The common display types
are analog meter, digital readout, impedance plane and time versus signal amplitude. Some
instruments are capable of presenting data in several display formats.

The most basic eddy current testing instrument consists of an alternating current source, a coil of
wire connected to this source, and a voltmeter to measure the voltage change across the coil. An
ammeter could also be used to measure the current change in the circuit instead of using the
voltmeter. While it might actually be possible to detect some types of defects with this type of
equipment, most eddy current instruments are a bit more sophisticated. In the following pages, a
few of the more important aspects of eddy current instrumentation will be discussed.

8.6 Probes - Mode of Operation

Eddy current probes are available in a large


variety of shapes and sizes. In fact, one of the
major advantages of eddy current inspection is
that probes can be custom designed for a wide
variety of applications. Eddy current probes are
classified by the configuration and mode of
operation of the test coils. The configuration of
the probe generally refers to the way the coil or
coils are packaged to best "couple" to the test
area of interest. An example of different configurations of probes would be bobbin probes, which
are inserted into a piece of pipe to inspect from the inside out, versus encircling probes, in which
the coil or coils encircle the pipe to inspect from the outside in. The mode of operation refers to
the way the coil or coils are wired and interface with the test equipment. The mode of operation
of a probe generally falls into one of four categories: absolute, differential, reflection and hybrid.
Each of these classifications will be discussed in more detail below.

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8.6.1 Absolute Probes

Absolute probes generally have a single test coil that is


used to generate the eddy currents and sense changes in
the eddy current field. As discussed in the physics
section, AC is passed through the coil and this sets up
an expanding and collapsing magnetic field in and
around the coil. When the probe is positioned next to a
conductive material, the changing magnetic field
generates eddy currents within the material. The
generation of the eddy currents take energy from the
coil and this appears as an increase in the electrical
resistance of the coil. The eddy currents generate their
own magnetic field that opposes the magnetic field of the coil and this changes the inductive
reactance of the coil. By measuring the absolute change in impedance of the test coil, much
information can be gained about the test material.

Absolute coils can be used for flaw detection, conductivity measurements, liftoff measurements
and thickness measurements. They are widely used due to their versatility. Since absolute probes
are sensitive to things such as conductivity, permeability liftoff and temperature, steps must be
taken to minimize these variables when they are not important to the inspection being performed.
It is very common for commercially available absolute probes to have a fixed "air loaded"
reference coil that compensates for ambient temperature variations.

8.6.2 Differential Probes

Differential probes have two active coils usually wound in opposition,


although they could be wound in addition with similar results. When the
two coils are over a flaw -free area of test sample, there is no differential
signal developed between the coils since they are both inspecting
identical material. However, when one coil is over a defect and the other
is over good material, a differential signal is produced. They have the

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advantage of being very sensitive to defects yet relatively insensitive to slowly varying
properties such as gradual dimensional or temperature variations. Probe wobble signals are also
reduced with this probe type. There are also disadvantages to using differential probes. Most
notably, the signals may be difficult to interpret. For example, if a flaw is longer than the spacing
between the two coils, only the leading and trailing edges will be detected due to signal
cancellation when both coils sense the flaw equally.

8.6.3 Reflection Probes

Reflection probes have two coils similar to a differential probe, but one coil is used to excite the
eddy currents and the other is used to sense changes in the test material. Probes of this
arrangement are often referred to as driver/pickup probes. The advantage of reflection probes is
that the driver and pickup coils can be separately optimized for their intended purpose. The
driver coil can be made so as to produce a strong and uniform flux field in the vicinity of the
pickup coil, while the pickup coil can be made very small so that it will be sensitive to very small
defects.

8.6.4 Hybrid Probes

An example of a hybrid probe is the split D, differential


probe shown to the right. This probe has a driver coil that
surrounds two D shaped sensing coils. It operates in the
reflection mode but additionally, its sensing coils operate in
the differential mode. This type of probe is very sensitive to
surface cracks. Another example of a hybrid probe is one
that uses a conventional coil to generate eddy currents in the
material but then uses a different type of sensor to detect
changes on the surface and within the test material. An example of a hybrid probe is one that
uses a Hall effect sensor to detect changes in the magnetic flux leaking from the test surface.
Hybrid probes are usually specially designed for a specific inspection application.

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8.7 Probes - Configurations

As mentioned on the previous page, eddy current probes are classified by the configuration and
mode of operation of the test coils. The configuration of the probe generally refers to the way the
coil or coils are packaged to best "couple" to the test area of interest. Some of the common
classifications of probes based on their configuration include surface probes, bolt hole probes,
inside diameter (ID) probes, and outside diameter (OD) probes.

8.7.1 Surface Probes

Surface probes are usually designed to be handheld


and are intended to be used in contact with the test
surface. Surface probes generally consist of a coil
of very fine wire encased in a protective housing.
The size of the coil and shape of the housing are
determined by the intended use of the probe. Most
of the coils are wound so that the axis of the coil is
perpendicular to the test surface. This coil
configuration is sometimes referred to as a
pancake coil and is good for detecting surface
discontinuities that are oriented perpendicular to
the test surface. Discontinuities, such as
delaminations, that are in a parallel plane to the
test surface will likely go undetected with this coil
configuration.

Wide surface coils are used when scanning large areas for relatively large defects. They sample a
relatively large area and allow for deeper penetration. Since they do sample a large area, they are
often used for conductivity tests to get more of a bulk material measurement. However, their
large sampling area limits their ability to detect small discontinuities.

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Pencil probes have a small surface coil that is encased in a long slender housing to permit
inspection in restricted spaces. They are available with a straight shaft or with a bent shaft, which
facilitates easier handling and use in applications such as the inspection of small diameter bores.
Pencil probes are prone to wobble due to their small base and sleeves are sometimes used to
provide a wider base.

8.7.2 Bolt Hole Probes

Bolt hole probes are a special type of surface probe that is designed to be used with a bolt hole
scanner. They have a surface coil that is mounted inside a housing that matches the diameter of
the hole being inspected. The probe is inserted in the hole and the scanner rotates the probe
within the hole.

8.7.3 ID or Bobbin Probes

ID probes, which are also referred to as Bobbin probes


or feed-through probes, are inserted into hollow
products, such as pipes, to inspect from the inside out.
The ID probes have a housing that keep the probe
centered in the product and the coil(s) orientation
somewhat constant relative to the test surface. The
coils are most commonly wound around the
circumference of the probe so that the probe inspects
an area around the entire circumference of the test
object at one time.

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8.7.3 OD or Encircling Coils

OD probes are often called encircling coils. They are similar to ID probes except that the coil(s)
encircle the material to inspect from the outside in. OD probes are commonly used to inspect
solid products, such as bars.

8.8 Surface Breaking Cracks

Eddy current equipment can be used for a variety of


applications such as the detection of cracks (discontinuities),
measurement of metal thickness, detection of metal thinning
due to corrosion and erosion, determination of coating
thickness, and the measurement of electrical conductivity and
magnetic permeability. Eddy current inspection is an excellent
method for detecting surface and near surface defects when
the probable defect location and orientation is well known.

Defects such as cracks are detected when they disrupt the path
of eddy currents and weaken their strength. The images to the
right show an eddy current surface probe on the surface of a
conductive component. The strength of the eddy currents
under the coil of the probe ins indicated by color. In the lower image, there is a flaw under the
right side of the coil and it can be see that the eddy currents are weaker in this area.

Of course, factors such as the type of material, surface finish and condition of the material, the
design of the probe, and many other factors can affect the sensitivity of the inspection.
Successful detection of surface breaking and near surface cracks requires:

1. A knowledge of probable defect type, position, and orientation.


2. Selection of the proper probe. The probe should fit the geometry of the part and the coil
must produce eddy currents that will be disrupted by the flaw.
3. Selection of a reasonable probe drive frequency. For surface flaws, the frequency should
be as high as possible for maximum resolution and high sensitivity. For subsurface flaws,

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lower frequencies are necessary to get the required depth of penetration and this results in
less sensitivity. Ferromagnetic or highly conductive materials require the use of an even
lower frequency to arrive at some
level of penetration.
4. Setup or reference specimens of
similar material to the component
being inspected and with features
that are representative of the defect
or condition being inspected for.

The basic steps in performing an inspection


with a surface probe are the following:

1. Select and setup the instrument and probe.


2. Select a frequency to produce the desired depth of penetration.
3. Adjust the instrument to obtain an easily recognizable defect response using a calibration
standard or setup specimen.
4. Place the inspection probe (coil) on the component surface and null the instrument.
5. Scan the probe over part of the surface in a pattern that will provide complete coverage of
the area being inspected. Care must be taken to maintain the same probe-to-surface
orientation as probe wobble can affect interpretation of the signal. In some cases, fixtures
to help maintain orientation or automated scanners may be required.
6. Monitor the signal for a local change in impedance that will occur as the probe moves
over a discontinuity.

Move the probe over the surface of the specimen and compare the signal responses from a
surface breaking crack with the signals from the calibration notches. The inspection can be made
at a couple of different frequencies to get a feel for the effect that frequency has on sensitivity in
this application.

8.9 Surface Crack Detection Using Sliding Probes

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Many commercial aircraft applications involve the use of multiple fasteners to connect the multi-
layer skins. Because of the fatigue stress that is caused by the typical application of any
commercial aircraft, fatigue cracks can be induced in the vicinity of the fastener holes. In order
to inspect the fastener holes in an adequate amount of time, sliding probes are an efficient
method of inspection. Sliding probes have been named so because they move over fasteners in a
sliding motion. There are two types of sliding probes, fixed and adjustable, which are usually
operated in the reflection mode. This means that the eddy currents are induced by the driver coil
and detected by a separate receiving coil.

Sliding probes are one of the fastest methods to inspect large numbers of fastener holes. They are
capable of detecting surface and subsurface discontinuities, but they can only detect defects in
one direction. The probes are marked with a detection line to indicate the direction of inspection.
In order to make a complete inspection there must be two scans that are orthogonal (90 degrees)
to each other.

8.10 Probe Types

8.10.1 Fixed Sliding Probes

These probes are generally used for thinner material compared to the
adjustable probes. Maximum penetration is about 1/8 inch. Fixed
sliding probes are particularly well suited for finding longitudinal
surface or subsurface cracks such as those found in lap joints. Typical
frequency range is from 100 Hz to 100 kHz.

8.10.2 Adjustable Sliding Probes

These probes are well suited for finding subsurface cracks


in thick multi-layer structures, like wing skins. Maximum
penetration is about 3/4 inch. The frequency range for
adjustable sliding probes is from 100 Hz to 40 kHz.

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Adjustable probes, as the name implies, are adjustable with the use of spacers, which will change
the penetration capabilities. The spacer thickness between the coils is normally adjusted for the
best detection. For tangential scans or 90 degree scanning with an offset from the center, a
thinner spacer is often used.

The spacer thickness range can vary from 0 (no spacer) for inspections close to the surface and
small fastener heads to a maximum of about 0.3 inch for deep penetration with large heads in the
bigger probe types. A wider spacer will give more tolerance to probe deviation as the sensitive
area becomes wider but the instrument will require more gain. Sliding probes usually penetrate
thicker materials compared to the donut probes.

8.11 Reference Standards

Reference/calibration standards for setup of sliding probes typically consist of three or four
aluminum plates that are fastened together within a lap joint type configuration. EDM notches or
naturally/artificially- induced cracks are
located in the second or third layer of the
standard. Reference standards used should
be manufactured from the same material
type, alloy, material thickness, and
chemical composition that will be found on
the aircraft component to be inspected.
Sizes and tolerances of flaws introduced in
the standards are usually regulated by
inspection specifications.

8.12 Inspection Variables

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8.12.1 Liftoff signal Adjustment

Liftoff is normally adjusted to be relatively horizontal. The term "relatively horizontal" is used
here because the liftoff signal often appears a curved line rather than a straight line. Sometimes
liftoff can be a sharp curve and may need to be adjusted to run slightly upwards before moving
downwards.

8.12.2 Scan Patterns

A typical scan is centralized over the fastener head and moves along the axis of the fastener
holes. This scan is generally used to detect cracks positioned along the axis of the fastener holes.
For detecting cracks located transverse or 90 degrees from the axis of the fastener holes, a scan
that is 90 degrees from the axis of the fastener holes is recommended.

8.12.3 Signal Interpretation

When the probe moves over a fastener hole with a crack, the indication changes and typically
will create a larger vertical movement. The vertical amplitude of the loop depends on the crack
length, with longer cracks giving higher indications.

If the crack is in the far side of the fastener, as the probe moves over it, the dot will follow the
fastener line first but will move upwards (clockwise) as it goes over the crack. If the crack is in
the near side, it will be found first and the dot will move along the crack level before coming
down to the fastener level.

If two cracks on opposite sides of the fastener hole are present, the dot will move upwards to the
height by the first crack length and then come back to the fastener line and balance point.

8.12.4 Probe Scan Deviation

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Most probes are designed to give a narrow indication for a good fastener hole so that the loops
from the cracks are more noticeable. Some probes and structures can give wider indications and
a similar result can be obtained if the probe is not straight when it approaches the fastener. It is
important to keep the probe centralized over the fastener heads. Doing this will give you a
maximum indication for the fastener and a crack.

If the probe deviates from the center line, the crack indication will move along the loop that we
saw in Figure A and is now present in Figure B. The crack indication is at "a" when the probe is
centralized and moves toward "b" as it deviates in one direction, or "c" as it deviates in the
opposite direction. Point "b" gives an important indication even if it loses a small amount of
amplitude it has gained in phase, giving a better separation angle. This is because we deviated to
the side where the crack is located.

a b c
a b c

Fig. A Fig. B

8.12.5 Crack Angle Deviation

A reduction in the crack indication occurs when the crack is at an angle to the probe scan direction. This happens if
the crack is not completely at 90 degrees to the normal probe scan or changes direction as it grows. Both the fixed
and adjustable sliding probes are capable of detecting cracks up to about 30 degrees off angle.

8.12.6 Electrical Contact

When inspecting fasteners that have just been installed or reference standards that have intimate
contact with the aluminum skin plate, it is not unusual to obtain a smaller than normal indication.

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In some extreme cases, the fastener indication may disappear almost completely. This is due to
the good electrical contact between the fastener and the skin. This condition allows the eddy
currents to circulate without encountering a boundary, and therefore, no obstacle or barrier.
Because of this effect, it is recommended to paint the holes before fastener installation.

8.13 Tube Inspection By Eddy Current

Eddy current inspection is often used to detect corrosion, erosion,


cracking and other changes in tubing. Heat exchangers and steam
generators, which are used in power plants, have thousands of tubes
that must be prevented from leaking. This is especially important in
nuclear power plants where reused, contaminated water must be
prevented from mixing with fresh water that will be returned to the
environment. The contaminated water flows on one side of the tube
(inside or outside) and the fresh water flows on the other side. The
heat is transferred from the contaminated water to the fresh water and
the fresh water is then returned back to is source, which is usually a
lake or river. It is very important to keep the two water sources from
mixing, so power plants are periodically shutdown so the tubes and other equipment can be
inspected and repaired. The eddy current test method and the related remote field testing method
provide high-speed inspection techniques for
these applications.

A technique that is often used involves feeding


a differential bobbin probe into the individual
tube of the heat exchanger. With the
differential probe, no signal will be seen on the
eddy current instrument as long as no metal
thinning is present. When metal thinning is
present, a loop will be seen on the impedance
plane as one coil of the differential probe
passes over the flawed area and a second loop will be produced when the second coil passes over

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the damage. When the corrosion is on the outside surface of the tube, the depth of corrosion is
indicated by a shift in the phase lag. The size of the indication provides an indication of the total
extent of the corrosion damage.

A tube inspection using a bobbin probe is simulated below. Click the "null" button and then drag
either the absolute or the differential probe through the tube. Note the different signal responses
provided by the two probes.

8.14 Thickness Measurements of Thin


Material

Eddy current techniques can be used to perform a


number of dimensional measurements. The ability to
make rapid measurements without the need for couplant
or, in some cases even surface contact, makes eddy
current techniques very useful. The type of
measurements that can be made include:

 thickness of thin metal sheet and foil, and of metallic coatings on metallic and
nonmetallic substrate

 cross-sectional dimensions of cylindrical tubes and rods


 thickness of nonmetallic coatings on metallic substrates

8.15 Corrosion Thinning of Aircraft Skins

One application where the eddy current technique is commonly


used to measure material thickness is in the detection and
characterization of corrosion damage on the skins of aircraft.
Eddy current techniques can be used to do spot checks or
scanners can be used to inspect small areas. Eddy current

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inspection has an advantage over ultrasound in this application because no mechanical coupling
is required to get the energy into the structure. Therefore, in multi-layered areas of the structure
like lap splices, eddy current can often determine if corrosion thinning is present in buried layers.

Eddy current inspection has an advantage over radiography for this application because only
single sided access is required to perform the inspection. To get a piece of film on the back side
of the aircraft skin might require removing interior furnishings, panels, and insulation which
could be very costly. Advanced eddy current techniques are being developed that can determine
thickness changes down to about three percent of the skin thickness.

8.16 Thickness Measurement of Thin Conductive Sheet, Strip and Foil

Eddy current techniques are used to measure the thickness of hot sheet, strip and foil in rolling
mills, and to measure the amount of metal thinning that has occurred over time due to corrosion
on fuselage skins of aircraft. On the impedance plane, thickness variations exhibit the same type
of eddy current signal response as a subsurface defect, except that the signal represents a void of
infinite size and depth. The phase rotation pattern is the same, but the signal amplitude is greater.
In the applet, the lift-off curves for different areas of the taper wedge can be produced by nulling
the probe in air and touching it to the surface at various locations of the tapered wedge. If a line
is drawn between the end points of the lift-off curves, a comma shaped curve is produced. As
illustrated in the second applet, this comma shaped curve is the path that is traced on the screen
when the probe is scanned down the length of the tapered wedge so that the entire range of
thickness values is measured. When making this measurement, it is important to keep in mind
that the depth of penetration of the eddy currents must cover the entire range of thicknesses being
measured. Typically, a frequency is selected that produces about one standard depth of
penetration at the maximum thickness. Unfortunately, at lower frequencies, which are often
needed to get the necessary penetration, the probe impedance is more sensitive to changes in
electrical conductivity. Thus, the effects of electrical conductivity cannot be phased out and it is
important to verify that any variations of conductivity over the region of interest are at a
sufficiently low level.

8.17 Thickness Measurement of Thin Conductive Layers

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It is also possible to measure the thickness of a thin layer of metal on a metallic substrate,
provided the two metals have widely differing electrical conductivities (i.e. silver on lead where
= 67 and 10 MS/m, respectively). A frequency must be selected such that there is complete
eddy current penetration of the layer, but not of the substrate itself. The method has also been
used successfully for measuring thickness of very thin protective coatings of ferromagnetic
metals (i.e. chromium and nickel) on non-ferromagnetic metal bases.

Depending on the required degree of penetration, measurements can be made using a single-coil
probe or a transformer probe, preferably reflection type. Small-diameter probe coils are usually
preferred since they can provide very high sensitivity and minimize effects related to property or
thickness variations in the underlying base metal when used in combination with suitably high
test frequencies. The goal is to confine the magnetizing field, and the resulting eddy current
distribution, to just beyond the thin coating layer and to minimize the field within the base
metals.

8.18 Pulsed Eddy Current Inspection

Conventional eddy current inspection techniques use sinusoidal alternating electrical current of a
particular frequency to excite the probe. The pulsed eddy current technique uses a step function
voltage to excite the probe. The advantage of using a step function voltage is that it contains a

continuum of frequencies. As a result, the electromagnetic response to several different


frequencies can be measured with just a single step. Since the depth of penetration is dependent
on the frequency of excitation, information from a range of depths can be obtained all at once. If
measurements are made in the time domain (that is by looking at signal strength as a function of

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time), indications produced by flaws or other features near the inspection coil will be seen first
and more distant features will be seen later in time.

To improve the strength and ease interpretation of the signal, a reference signal is usually
collected, to which all other signals are compared (just like nulling the probe in conventional
eddy current inspection). Flaws, conductivity, and dimensional changes produce a change in the
signal and a difference between the reference signal and the measurement signal that is
displayed. The distance of the flaw and other features relative to the probe will cause the signal
to shift in time. Therefore, time gating techniques (like in ultrasonic inspection) can be used to
gain information about the depth of a feature of interest.

8.19 EC Standards and Methods

British Standards (BS) and American Standards (ASTM) relating to magnetic flux leakage and
eddy current methods of testing are given below. National standards are currently being
harmonized across the whole of Europe, and British Standards are no exception. Harmonized
standards will eventually be identified by the initials BS EN; for example, BS 5411 has been
revised and is now known as BS EN 2360. Harmonization is unlikely to be completed before
2001. The year of updating a British Standard is given in brackets. ASTM standards are
published annually and updated when necessary.

FLUX LEAKAGE METHODS (INCLUDING MAGNETIC PARTICLE INSPECTION)

British Standards (BS)

BS 6072:1981 (1986) Magnetic particle flaw detection


BS 4489:1984 Black light measurement
BS 5044:1973 (1987) Contrast aid paints
BS 5138:1974 (1988) Forged and stamped crankshafts
BS 3683 (part 2):1985 Glossary
BS 4069:1982 Inks and powders

American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)

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ASTM E 709 Magnetic particle inspection practice


ASTM E 125 Indications in ferrous castings
ASTM E 1316 Definition of terms
ASTM E 570 Flux leakage examination of ferromagnetic steel tubular products

EDDY CURRENT METHODS

British Standards (BS)

BS 3683 (part 5):1965 (1989) Eddy current flaw detection glossary


BS 3889 (part 2A): 1986 (1991) Automatic eddy current testing of wrought steel tubes
BS 3889 (part 213): 1966 (1987) Eddy current testing of nonferrous tubes
BS 5411 (part 3):1984 Eddy current methods for measurement of coating thickness of
nonconductive coatings on nonmagnetic base material. Withdrawn: now known as BS EN 2360
(2007).

9. Radiography Testing (RT)

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9.1 History of Radiography

X-rays were discovered in 1895 by Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen (1845-


1923) who was a Professor at Wuerzburg University in Germany.
Working with a cathode-ray tube in his laboratory, Roentgen observed
a fluorescent glow of crystals on a table near his tube. The tube that
Roentgen was working with consisted of a glass envelope (bulb) with
positive and negative electrodes encapsulated in it. The air in the tube
was evacuated, and when a high voltage was applied, the tube
produced a fluorescent glow. Roentgen shielded the tube with heavy
black paper, and discovered a green colored fluorescent light generated
by a material located a few feet away from the tube.

Public fancy was caught by this invisible ray with the ability to pass through
solid matter, and, in conjunction with a photographic plate, provide a picture of
bones and interior body parts. Scientific fancy was captured by the
demonstration of a wavelength shorter than light. This generated new possibilities in physics,
and for investigating the structure of matter. Much enthusiasm was generated about potential
applications of rays as an aid in medicine and surgery. Within a month after the announcement of
the discovery, several medical radiographs had been made in Europe and the United States,
which were used by surgeons to guide them in their work. In June 1896, only 6 months after
Roentgen announced his discovery, X-rays were being used
by battlefield physicians to locate bullets in wounded
soldiers.

In 1922, industrial radiography took another step forward


with the advent of the 200,000-volt X-ray tube that allowed
radiographs of thick steel parts to be produced in a
reasonable amount of time. In 1931, General Electric Company developed 1,000,000 volt X-ray
generators, providing an effective tool for industrial radiography. That same year, the American
Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) permitted X-ray approval of fusion welded pressure
vessels that further opened the door to industrial acceptance and use.

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9.2 A Second Source of Radiation

Shortly after the discovery of X-rays, another form of penetrating rays was discovered. In 1896,
French scientist Henri Becquerel discovered natural radioactivity. Many scientists of the period
were working with cathode rays, and other scientists were gathering evidence on the theory that
the atom could be subdivided. Some of the new research showed that certain types of atoms
disintegrate by themselves. It was Henri Becquerel who discovered this phenomenon while
investigating the properties of fluorescent minerals. Becquerel was researching the principles of
fluorescence, wherein certain minerals glow (fluoresce) when exposed to sunlight. He utilized
photographic plates to record this fluorescence.

One of the minerals Becquerel worked with was a uranium compound. On a day when it was too
cloudy to expose his samples to direct sunlight, Becquerel stored some of the compound in a
drawer with his photographic plates. Later when he developed these plates, he discovered that
they were fogged (exhibited exposure to light). Becquerel questioned what would have caused
this fogging. He knew he had wrapped the plates tightly before using them, so the fogging was
not due to stray light. In addition, he noticed that only the plates that were in the drawer with the
uranium compound were fogged. Becquerel concluded that the uranium compound gave off a
type of radiation that could penetrate heavy paper and expose photographic film. Becquerel
continued to test samples of uranium compounds and determined that the source of radiation was
the element uranium. Bacquerel's discovery was, unlike that of the X-rays, virtually unnoticed by
laymen and scientists alike. Relatively few scientists were interested in Becquerel's findings. It
was not until the discovery of radium by the Curies two years later that interest in radioactivity
became widespread.

Radium became the initial industrial gamma ray source. The material allowed castings up to 10
to 12 inches thick to be radiographed. During World War II, industrial radiography grew
tremendously as part of the Navy's shipbuilding program. In 1946, man-made gamma ray
sources such as cobalt and iridium became available. These new sources were far stronger than
radium and were much less expensive. The manmade sources rapidly replaced radium, and use
of gamma rays grew quickly in industrial radiography.

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9.3 Health Concerns

The science of radiation protection, or "health physics" as it is more properly called, grew out of
the parallel discoveries of X-rays and radioactivity in the closing years of the 19th century.
Experimenters, physicians, laymen, and physicists alike set up X-ray generating apparatuses and
proceeded about their labors with a lack of concern regarding potential dangers. Such a lack of
concern is quite understandable, for there was nothing in previous experience to suggest that X-
rays would in any way be hazardous. Indeed, the opposite was the case, for who would suspect
that a ray similar to light but unseen, unfelt, or otherwise undetectable by the senses would be
damaging to a person? More likely, or so it seemed to some, X-rays could be beneficial for the

Today, it can be said that radiation ranks among the most thoroughly investigated causes of
disease. Although much still remains to be learned, more is known about the mechanisms of
radiation damage on the molecular, cellular, and organ system than is known for most other
health stressing agents. Indeed, it is precisely this vast accumulation of quantitative dose-
response data that enables health physicists to specify radiation levels so that medical, scientific,
and industrial uses of radiation may continue at levels of risk no greater than, and frequently less
than, the levels of risk associated with any other technology.

X-rays and Gamma rays are electromagnetic radiation of exactly the same nature as light, but of
much shorter wavelength. Wavelength of visible light is on the order of 6000 angstroms while
the wavelength of x-rays is in the range of one angstrom and that of gamma rays is 0.0001
angstrom. This very short wavelength is what gives x-rays and gamma rays their power to
penetrate materials that light cannot. These electromagnetic waves are of a high energy level and
can break chemical bonds in materials they penetrate. If the irradiated matter is living tissue, the
breaking of chemical bonds may result in altered structure or a change in the function of cells.
Early exposures to radiation resulted in the loss of limbs and even lives. Men and women
researchers collected and documented information on the interaction of radiation and the human
body. This early information helped science understand how electromagnetic radiation interacts
with living tissue. Unfortunately, much of this information was collected at great personal
expense.

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9.4 Present State of Radiography

In many ways, radiography has changed little from the early days of its use. We still capture a
shadow image on film using similar procedures and processes technicians were using in the late
1800's. Today, however, we are able to generate images of higher quality and greater sensitivity
through the use of higher quality films with a larger variety of film grain sizes. Film processing
has evolved to an automated state, producing more consistent film quality by removing manual
processing variables. Electronics and computers allow technicians to now capture images
digitally. The use of "filmless radiography" provides a means of capturing an image, digitally
enhancing, sending the image anywhere in the world, and archiving an image that will not
deteriorate with time. Technological advances have provided industry with smaller, lighter, and
very portable equipment that produce high quality X-rays. The use of linear accelerators provide
a means of generating extremely short wavelength, highly penetrating radiation, a concept
dreamed of only a few short years ago.

While the process has changed little, technology has evolved allowing radiography to be widely
used in numerous areas of inspection. Radiography has seen expanded usage in industry to
inspect not only welds and castings, but to radiographically inspect items such as airbags and
canned food products. Radiography has found use in metallurgical material identification and
security systems at airports and other facilities.

Gamma ray inspection has also changed considerably since the Curies' discovery of radium.
Man-made isotopes of today are far stronger and offer the technician a wide range of energy
levels and half-lives. The technician can select Co-60 which will effectively penetrate very thick
materials, or select a lower energy isotope, such as Tm-170, which can be used to inspect plastics
and very thin or low density materials. Today gamma rays find wide application in industries
such as petrochemical, casting, welding, and aerospace.

9.5 Future Direction of Radiographic Education

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Although many of the methods and techniques developed over a century ago remain in use,
computers are slowly becoming a part of radiographic inspection. The future of radiography will
likely see many changes. As noted earlier, companies are performing many inspections without
the aid of film.

Radiographers of the future will capture images in digitized form and e-mail them to the
customer when the inspection has been completed. Film evaluation will likely be left to
computers. Inspectors may capture a digitized image, feed them into a computer and wait for a
printout of the image with an accept/reject report. Systems will be able to scan a part and present
a three-dimensional image to the radiographer, helping him or her to locate the defect within the
part.

Inspectors in the future will be able to peal away layer after layer of a part to evaluate the
material in much greater detail. Color images, much like
computer generated ultrasonic C-scans of today, will make
interpretation of indications much more reliable and less time
consuming.

Educational techniques and materials will need to be revised


and updated to keep pace with technology and meet the
requirements of industry. These needs may well be met with
computers. Computer programs can simulate radiographic
inspections using a computer aided design (CAD) model of a
part to produce physically accurate simulated x-ray radiographic images. Programs allow the
operator to select different parts to inspect, adjust the placement and orientation of the part to
obtain the proper equipment/part relationships, and adjust all the usual x-ray generator settings to
arrive at the desired radiographic film exposure.

9.6 Properties of X-Rays and Gamma Rays

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 They are not detected by human senses (cannot be seen, heard, felt, etc.).
 They travel in straight lines at the speed of light.
 Their paths cannot be changed by electrical or magnetic fields.
 They can be diffracted to a small degree at interfaces between two different materials.
 They pass through matter until they have a chance encounter with an atomic particle.
 Their degree of penetration depends on their energy and the matter they are traveling
through.
 They have enough energy to ionize matter and can damage or destroy living cells.

9.6.1 X-Radiation

 X-rays are just like any other kind of electromagnetic radiation. They can be produced in
parcels of energy called photons, just like light. There are two different atomic processes
that can produce X-ray photons. One is called Bremsstrahlung and is a German term
meaning "braking radiation." The other is called K-shell emission. They can both occur
in the heavy atoms of tungsten. Tungsten is often the material chosen for the target or
anode of the x-ray tube.
 Both ways of making X-rays involve a change in the state of electrons. However,
Bremsstrahlung is easier to understand using the classical idea that radiation is emitted
when the velocity of the electron shot at the tungsten changes. The negatively charged
electron slows down after swinging around the nucleus of a positively charged tungsten
atom. This energy loss produces X-radiation. Electrons are scattered elastically and
inelastically by the positively charged nucleus. The inelastically scattered electron loses
energy, which appears as Bremsstrahlung. Elastically scattered electrons (which include
backscattered electrons) are generally scattered through larger angles. In the interaction,
many photons of different wavelengths are produced, but none of the photons have more
energy than the electron had to begin with. After emitting the spectrum of X-ray
radiation, the original electron is slowed down or stopped.

9.6.2 Bremsstrahlung Radiation

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 X-ray tubes produce x-ray photons by


accelerating a stream of electrons to energies
of several hundred kilovolts with velocities
of several hundred kilometers per hour and
colliding them into a heavy target material.
The abrupt acceleration of the charged
particles (electrons) produces
Bremsstrahlung photons. X-ray radiation
with a continuous spectrum of energies is
produced with a range from a few keV to a
maximum of the energy of the electron beam. Target materials for industrial tubes are
typically tungsten, which means that the wave functions of the bound tungsten electrons
are required. The inherent filtration of an X-ray tube must be computed, which is
controlled by the amount that the electron penetrates into the surface of the target and by
the type of vacuum window present.
 The bremsstrahlung photons generated within the target material are attenuated as they
pass through typically 50 microns of target material.
The beam is further attenuated by the aluminum or
beryllium vacuum window. The results are an
elimination of the low energy photons, 1 keV through
l5 keV, and a significant reduction in the portion of
the spectrum from 15 keV through 50 keV. The
spectrum from an x-ray tube is further modified by
the filtration caused by the selection of filters used in
the setup.
 The applet below allows the user to visualize an electron accelerating and interacting
with a heavy target material. The graph keeps a record of the bremsstrahlung photons
numbers as a function of energy. After a few events, the "building up" of the graph may
be accomplished by pressing the "automate" button.

9.6.3 Gamma Radiation

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 Gamma radiation is one of the three types of natural radioactivity. Gamma rays are
electromagnetic radiation, like X-rays. The other two types of natural radioactivity are
alpha and beta radiation, which are in the form of particles. Gamma rays are the most
energetic form of electromagnetic radiation, with a very short wavelength of less than
one-tenth of a nanometer.
 Gamma radiation is the product of radioactive atoms. Depending upon the ratio of
neutrons to protons within its nucleus, an isotope of a particular element may be stable or
unstable. When the binding energy is not strong enough to hold the nucleus of an atom
together, the atom is said to be unstable. Atoms with unstable nuclei are constantly
changing as a result of the imbalance of energy within the nucleus. Over time, the nuclei
of unstable isotopes spontaneously disintegrate, or transform, in a process known as
radioactive decay. Various types of penetrating radiation may be emitted from the
nucleus and/or its surrounding electrons. Nuclides which undergo radioactive decay are
called radionuclides. Any material which contains measurable amounts of one or more
radionuclides is a radioactive material.

9.7 Types Radiation Produced by Radioactive Decay

When an atom undergoes radioactive decay, it emits one or more forms of radiation with
sufficient energy to ionize the atoms with which it interacts. Ionizing radiation can consist of
high speed subatomic particles ejected from the nucleus or electromagnetic radiation (gamma-
rays) emitted by either the nucleus or orbital electrons.

9.7.1 Alpha Particles

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Certain radionuclides of high atomic


mass (Ra226, U238, Pu239) decay by
the emission of alpha particles. These
alpha particles are tightly bound units
of two neutrons and two protons each
(He4 nucleus) and have a positive
charge. Emission of an alpha particle
from the nucleus results in a decrease of
two units of atomic number (Z) and
four units of mass number (A). Alpha particles are emitted with discrete energies
characteristic of the particular transformation from which they originate. All alpha
particles from a particular radionuclide transformation will have identical energies.
9.7.2 Beta Particles
A nucleus with an unstable ratio of neutrons to protons may decay through the emission
of a high speed electron called a beta particle. This results in a net change of one unit of
atomic number (Z). Beta particles have a negative charge and the beta particles emitted
by a specific radionuclide will range in energy from near zero up to a maximum value,
which is characteristic of the particular transformation.
9.7.3 Gamma-rays
A nucleus which is in an excited state may emit one or more photons (packets of
electromagnetic radiation) of discrete energies. The emission of gamma rays does not
alter the number of protons or neutrons in the nucleus but instead has the effect of
moving the nucleus from a higher to a lower energy state (unstable to stable). Gamma ray
emission frequently follows beta decay, alpha decay, and other nuclear decay processes.

9.8 Filters in Radiography

At x-ray energies, filters consist of material placed in the useful beam to absorb, preferentially,
radiation based on energy level or to modify the spatial distribution of the beam. Filtration is
required to absorb the lower-energy x-ray photons emitted by the tube before they reach the

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target. The use of filters produce a cleaner image by absorbing the lower energy x-ray photons
that tend to scatter more.

The total filtration of the beam includes the inherent filtration (composed of part of the x-ray
tube and tube housing) and the added filtration (thin sheets of a metal inserted in the x-ray
beam). Filters are typically placed at or near the x-ray port in the direct path of the x-ray beam.
Placing a thin sheet of copper between the part and the film cassette has also proven an effective
method of filtration.

For industrial radiography, the filters added to the x-ray beam are most often constructed of high
atomic number materials such as lead, copper, or brass. Filters for medical radiography are
usually made of aluminum (Al). The amount of both the inherent and the added filtration are
stated in mm of Al or mm of Al equivalent. The amount of filtration of the x-ray beam is
specified by and based on the voltage potential (keV) used to produce the beam. The thickness of
filter materials is dependent on atomic numbers, kilovoltage settings, and the desired filtration
factor.

9.9 Radiation Safety

Ionizing radiation is an extremely important NDT tool but it can pose a


hazard to human health. For this reason, special precautions must be
observed when using and working around ionizing radiation. The possession
of radioactive materials and use of radiation producing devices in the United
States is governed by strict regulatory controls. The primary regulatory
authority for most types and uses of radioactive materials is the federal
Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). However, more than half of the states in the US have
entered into "agreement" with the NRC to assume regulatory control of radioactive material use
within their borders. As part of the agreement process, the states must adopt and enforce
regulations comparable to those found in Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
Regulations for control of radioactive material used in Iowa are found in Chapter 136C of the
Iowa Code.

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For most situations, the types and maximum quantities of radioactive materials possessed, the
manner in which they may be used, and the individuals authorized to use radioactive materials
are stipulated in the form of a "specific" license from the appropriate regulatory authority. In
Iowa, this authority is the Iowa Department of Public Health. However, for certain institutions
which routinely use large quantities of numerous types of radioactive materials, the exact
quantities of materials and details of use may not be specified in the license. Instead, the license
grants the institution the authority and responsibility for setting the specific requirements for
radioactive material use within its facilities. These licensees are termed "broadscope" and require
a Radiation Safety Committee and usually a full-time Radiation Safety Officer.

Complicating matters further is the fact that Gamma and X-ray radiation are not detectable by
the human body. However, the risks can be minimized when the radiation is handled and
managed properly. The law requires that individuals receive training in the safe handling and use
of radioactive materials and radiation producing devices. Some of the topics this training should
cover include:

 Health concerns associated with exposure to radioactive materials or radiation.


 Precautions or procedures to minimize exposure to radiation.
 Purposes and functions of protective devices employed.
 The permit conditions and the applicable portions of the Radiation Safety Manual.
 Worker‘s responsibility to promptly report any condition that may lead to or cause a
violation of the regulations or cause an unnecessary exposure.
 Actions to take in the event of an emergency.
 Radiation exposure reports that workers have a right to
receive.

9.10 Radiographic Film

X-ray films for general radiography consist of an emulsion-gelatin


containing radiation sensitive silver halide crystal, such as silver

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bromide or silver chloride, and a flexible, transparent, blue-tinted base. The emulsion is different
from those used in other types of photography films to account for the distinct characteristics of
gamma rays and x-rays, but X-ray films are sensitive to light. Usually, the emulsion is coated on
both sides of the base in layers about 0.0005 inch thick. Putting emulsion on both sides of the
base doubles the amount of radiation-sensitive silver halide, and thus increases the film speed.
The emulsion layers are thin enough so developing, fixing, and drying can be accomplished in a
reasonable time. A few of the films used for radiography only have emulsion on one side which
produces the greatest detail in the image.

When x-rays, gamma rays, or light strike the grains of the sensitive silver halide in the emulsion,
some of the Br- ions are liberated and captured by the Ag+ ions. This change is of such a small
nature that it cannot be detected by ordinary physical methods and is called a "latent (hidden)
image." However, the exposed grains are now more sensitive to the reduction process when
exposed to a chemical solution (developer), and the reaction results in the formation of black,
metallic silver. It is this silver, suspended in the gelatin on both sides of the base, that creates an
image. See the page on film processing for additional information.

9.10.1 Film Selection

The selection of a film when radiographing any


particular component depends on a number of different
factors. Listed below are some of the factors that must
be considered when selecting a film and developing a
radiographic technique.

1. Composition, shape, and size of the part being


examined and, in some cases, its weight and
location.
2. Type of radiation used, whether x-rays from an
x-ray generator or gamma rays from a radioactive source.
3. Kilovoltages available with the x-ray equipment or the intensity of the gamma radiation.
4. Relative importance of high radiographic detail or quick and economical results.

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Selecting the proper film and developing the optimal radiographic technique usually involves
arriving at a balance between a number of opposing factors. For example, if high resolution and
contrast sensitivity is of overall importance, a slower and finer grained film should be used in
place of a faster film.

9.10.2 Film Packaging

Radiographic film can be purchased in a number of different


packaging options. The most basic form is as individual
sheets in a box. In preparation for use, each sheet must be
loaded into a cassette or film holder in the darkroom to
protect it from exposure to light. The sheets are available in a
variety of sizes and can be purchased with or without interleaving paper. Interleaved packages
have a layer of paper that separates each piece of film. The interleaving paper is removed before
the film is loaded into the film holder. Many users find the interleaving paper useful in
separating the sheets of film and offer some protection against scratches and dirt during
handling.

Industrial x-ray films are also available in a form in which each sheet is enclosed in a light-tight
envelope. The film can be exposed from either side without removing it from the protective
packaging. A rip strip makes it easy to remove the film in the darkroom for processing. This
form of packaging has the advantage of eliminating the process of loading the film holders in the
darkroom. The film is completely protected from finger marks and dirt until the time the film is
removed from the envelope for processing.

Packaged film is also available in rolls, which allows the radiographer to cut the film to any
length. The ends of the packaging are sealed with electrical tape in the darkroom. In applications
such as the radiography of circumferential welds and the examination of long joints on an
aircraft fuselage, long lengths of film offer great economic advantage. The film is wrapped

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around the outside of a structure and the radiation source is positioned on axis inside, allowing
for examination of a large area with a single exposure.

Envelope packaged film can be purchased with the film sandwiched between two lead oxide
screens. The screens function to reduce scatter radiation at energy levels below 150keV and as
intensification screens above 150 keV.

9.10.3 Film Handling

X-ray film should always be handled carefully to avoid physical strains, such as pressure,
creasing, buckling, friction, etc. Whenever films are loaded in semi-flexible holders and external
clamping devices are used, care should be taken to be sure pressure is uniform. If a film holder
bears against a few high spots, such as on an un-ground weld, the pressure may be great enough
to produce desensitized areas in the radiograph. This precaution is particularly important when
using envelope-packed films.

Another important precaution is to avoid drawing film rapidly from


cartons, exposure holders, or cassettes. Such care will help to eliminate
circular or treelike black markings in the radiograph that sometimes
result due to static electric discharges.

9.10.4 Film Processing

As mentioned previously, radiographic film consists of a transparent,


blue-tinted base coated on both sides with an emulsion. The emulsion
consists of gelatin containing microscopic, radiation sensitive silver
halide crystals, such as silver bromide and silver chloride. When x-rays,
gamma rays or light rays strike the the crystals or grains, some of the Br -
ions are liberated and captured by the Ag+ ions. In this condition, the
radiograph is said to contain a latent (hidden) image because the change

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in the grains is virtually undetectable, but the exposed grains are now more sensitive to reaction
with the developer.

When the film is processed, it is exposed to several different chemicals solutions for controlled
periods of time. Processing film basically involves the following five steps.

 Development - The developing agent gives up electrons to convert the silver halide grains
to metallic silver. Grains that have been exposed to the radiation develop more rapidly,
but given enough time the developer will convert all the silver ions into silver metal.
Proper temperature control is needed to convert exposed grains to pure silver while
keeping unexposed grains as silver halide crystals.
 Stopping the development - The stop bath simply stops the development process by
diluting and washing the developer away with water.
 Fixing - Unexposed silver halide crystals are removed by the fixing bath. The fixer
dissolves only silver halide crystals, leaving the silver metal behind.
 Washing - The film is washed with water to remove all the processing chemicals.
 Drying - The film is dried for viewing.

Processing film is a strict science governed by rigid rules of chemical concentration,


temperature, time, and physical movement. Whether processing is done by hand or automatically
by machine, excellent radiographs require a high degree of consistency and quality control.

9.10.4.1 Manual Processing & Darkrooms

Manual processing begins with the darkroom. The darkroom should be located in a central
location, adjacent to the reading room and a reasonable distance from the exposure area. For
portability, darkrooms are often mounted on pickups or trailers.

Film should be located in a light, tight compartment, which is most often a metal bin that is used
to store and protect the film. An area next to the film bin that is dry and free of dust and dirt
should be used to load and unload the film. Another area, the wet side, should be used to process
the film. This method protects the film from any water or chemicals that may be located on the
surface of the wet side.

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Each of step in the film processing must be excited properly to develop the image, wash out
residual processing chemicals, and to provide adequate shelf life of the radiograph. The objective
of processing is two fold: first, to produce a radiograph adequate for viewing, and second, to
prepare the radiograph for archival storage. Radiographs are often stored for 20 years or more as
a record of the inspection.

9.10.4.2 Automatic Processor Evaluation

The automatic processor is the essential piece of equipment in every x-ray department. The
automatic processor will reduce film processing time when compared to manual development by
a factor of four. To monitor the performance of a processor, apart from optimum temperature and
mechanical checks, chemical and sensitometric checks should be performed for developer and
fixer. Chemical checks involve measuring the pH values of the developer and fixer as well as
both replenishers. Also, the specific gravity and fixer silver levels must be measured. Ideally, pH
should be measured daily and it is important to record these measurements, as regular logging
provides very useful information. The daily measurements of pH values for the developer and
fixer can then be plotted to observe the trend of variations in these values compared to the
normal pH operating levels to identify problems.

Sensitometric checks may be carried out to evaluate if the performance of films in the automatic
processors is being maximized. These checks involve measurement of basic fog level, speed and
average gradient made at 1° C intervals of temperature. The range of temperature measurement
depends on the type of chemistry in use, whether cold or hot developer. These three
measurements: fog level, speed, and average gradient, should then be plotted against temperature
and compared with the manufacturer's supplied figures.

9.11 Radiograph Interpretation - Welds

In addition to producing high quality radiographs, the radiographer must also be skilled in
radiographic interpretation. Interpretation of radiographs takes place in three basic steps: (1)

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detection, (2) interpretation, and (3) evaluation. All of these steps make use of the radiographer's
visual acuity. Visual acuity is the ability to resolve a spatial pattern in an image. The ability of an
individual to detect discontinuities in radiography is also affected by the lighting condition in the
place of viewing, and the experience level for recognizing various features in the image. The
following material was developed to help students develop an understanding of the types of
defects found in weldments and how they appear in a radiograph.

9.12 Discontinuities

Discontinuities are interruptions in the typical structure of a material. These interruptions may
occur in the base metal, weld material or "heat affected" zones. Discontinuities, which do not
meet the requirements of the codes or specifications used to invoke and control an inspection, are
referred to as defects.

9.13 Welding Discontinuities

The following discontinuities are typical of all types of welding.

9.13.1 Cold Lap

Cold lap is a condition where the weld filler metal does not properly fuse with the base metal or
the previous weld pass material (interpass cold lap). The arc does not melt the base metal
sufficiently and causes the slightly molten puddle to flow into the base material without bonding.

Fig. : Cold Lap in Welding

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9.13.2 Porosity

It is the result of gas entrapment in the solidifying metal. Porosity can take many shapes on a
radiograph but often appears as dark round or irregular spots or specks appearing singularly, in
clusters, or in rows. Sometimes, porosity is elongated and may appear to have a tail. This is the
result of gas attempting to escape while the metal is still in a liquid state and is called wormhole
porosity. All porosity is a void in the material and it will have a higher radiographic density than
the surrounding area.

Fig. : Porosity in Welding

9.13.3 Cluster porosity

Cluster porosity is caused when flux coated electrodes are contaminated with moisture. The
moisture turns into a gas when heated and becomes trapped in the weld during the welding
process. Cluster porosity appear just like regular porosity in the radiograph but the indications
will be grouped close together.

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Fig. : Cluster porosity in Welding

9.13.4 Slag inclusions

Slag inclusions are nonmetallic solid material entrapped in weld metal or between weld and base
metal. In a radiograph, dark, jagged asymmetrical shapes within the weld or along the weld joint
areas are indicative of slag inclusions.

Fig. : Slag Inclusions

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9.13.5 IP and LOP

Incomplete penetration (IP) or lack of penetration (LOP) occurs when the weld metal fails to
penetrate the joint. It is one of the most objectionable weld discontinuities. Lack of penetration
allows a natural stress riser from which a crack may propagate. The appearance on a radiograph
is a dark area with well-defined, straight edges that follows the land or root face down the center
of the weldment.

Fig. : Incomplete penetration (IP) or lack of penetration (LOP) in Welding

9.13.6 Incomplete fusion

It is a condition where the weld filler metal does not properly fuse with the base metal.
Appearance on radiograph: usually appears as a dark line or lines oriented in the direction of the
weld seam along the weld preparation or joining area.

Fig. : Incomplete fusion in Welding

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9.13.7 Internal concavity or suck back

Internal concavity or suck back is a condition where the weld metal has contracted as it cools and
has been drawn up into the root of the weld. On a radiograph it looks similar to a lack of
penetration but the line has irregular edges and it is often quite wide in the center of the weld
image.

Fig. : Internal concavity or suck back in Welding

9.13.8 Internal or root undercut

It is an erosion of the base metal next to the root of the weld. In the radiographic image it
appears as a dark irregular line offset from the centerline of the weldment. Undercutting is not as
straight edged as LOP because it does not follow a ground edge.

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Fig. : Internal or root undercut in Welding

9.13.9 External or crown undercut

External or crown undercut is an erosion of the base metal next to the crown of the weld. In the
radiograph, it appears as a dark irregular line along the outside edge of the weld area.

Fig. : External or crown undercut in Welding

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9.13.10 Offset or mismatch

Offset or mismatch is terms associated with a condition where two pieces being welded together
are not properly aligned. The radiographic image shows a noticeable difference in density
between the two pieces. The difference in density is caused by the difference in material
thickness. The dark, straight line is caused by the failure of the weld metal to fuse with the land
area.

Fig. : Offset or mismatch in Welding

9.13.11 Inadequate weld reinforcement

Inadequate weld reinforcement is an area of a weld where the thickness of weld metal deposited
is less than the thickness of the base material. It is very easy to determine by radiograph if the
weld has inadequate reinforcement, because the image density in the area of suspected
inadequacy will be higher (darker) than the image density of the surrounding base material.

Fig. : Inadequate weld reinforcement In Welding

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9.13.12 Excess weld reinforcement

It is an area of a weld that has weld metal added in excess of that specified by engineering
drawings and codes. The appearance on a radiograph is a localized, lighter area in the weld. A
visual inspection will easily determine if the weld reinforcement is in excess of that specified by
the engineering requirements.

Fig. : Excess weld reinforcement

9.13.13 Cracks

Cracks can be detected in a radiograph only when they are propagating in a direction that
produces a change in thickness that is parallel to the x-ray beam. Cracks will appear as jagged
and often very faint irregular lines. Cracks can sometimes appear as "tails" on inclusions or
porosity.

Fig. : Cracks in Welding

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9.13.14 Discontinuities in TIG welds

The following discontinuities are unique to the TIG welding process. These discontinuities occur
in most metals welded by the process, including aluminum and stainless steels. The TIG method
of welding produces a clean homogeneous weld which when radiographed is easily interpreted.

9.13.15 Tungsten inclusions

Tungsten is a brittle and inherently dense material used in the electrode in tungsten inert gas
welding. If improper welding procedures are used, tungsten may be entrapped in the weld.
Radiographically, tungsten is more dense than aluminum or steel, therefore it shows up as a
lighter area with a distinct outline on the radiograph.

Fig. : Tungsten inclusions

9.13.16 Oxide inclusions

Oxide inclusions are usually visible on the surface of material being welded (especially
aluminum). Oxide inclusions are less dense than the surrounding material and, therefore, appear
as dark irregularly shaped discontinuities in the radiograph.

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Fig. : Oxide inclusions in Welding

9.13.17 Discontinuities in Gas Metal Arc Welds (GMAW)

The following discontinuities are most commonly found in GMAW welds. Whiskers are short
lengths of weld electrode wire, visible on the top or bottom surface of the weld or contained
within the weld. On a radiograph they appear as light, "wire like" indications.

9.13.18 Burn-Through

Burn-Through results when too much heat causes excessive weld metal to penetrate the weld
zone. Often lumps of metal sag through the weld, creating a thick globular condition on the back
of the weld. These globs of metal are referred to as icicles. On a radiograph, burn-through
appears as dark spots, which are often surrounded by light globular areas (icicles).

Fig. : Burn-Through

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9.14 Real-time Radiography

Real-time radiography (RTR), or real-time


radioscopy, is a nondestructive test (NDT) method
whereby an image is produced electronically, rather
than on film, so that very little lag time occurs
between the item being exposed to radiation and the
resulting image. In most instances, the electronic
image that is viewed results from the radiation
passing through the object being inspected and
interacting with a screen of material that fluoresces or gives off light when the interaction occurs.
The fluorescent elements of the screen form the image much as the grains of silver form the
image in film radiography. The image formed is a "positive image" since brighter areas on the
image indicate where higher levels of transmitted radiation reached the screen. This image is the
opposite of the negative image produced in film radiography

9.15 Advantages of Radiography


 Information is presented pictorially.
 A permanent record is provided which may be viewed at a time and place distant from
the test.
 Useful for thin sections.
 Sensitivity declared on each film suitable for any material.
 Suitable for any material.
9.16 Disadvantages of Radiography
 Generally an inability to cope with thick sections.
 Possible health hazard.
 Need to direct the beam accurately for two-dimensional defects.
 Film processing and viewing facilities are necessary, as is an exposure compound.
 Not suitable for automation, unless the system incorporates fluoroscopy with an image
intensifier or other electronic aids
 Not suitable for surface defects.

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10. Ultrasonic Testing


10.1 Introduction of Ultrasonic Testing
This technique is used for the detection of internal and surface (particularly distant surface)
defects in sound conducting materials. The principle is in some respects similar to echo
sounding. A short pulse of ultrasound is generated by means of an electric charge applied to a
piezo electric crystal, which vibrates for a very short period at a frequency related to the
thickness of the crystal. In flaw detection this frequency is usually in the range of one million to
six million times per second (1 MHz to 6 MHz). Vibrations or sound waves at this frequency
have the ability to travel a considerable distance in homogeneous elastic material, such as many
metals with little attenuation. The velocity at which these waves propagate is related to the
Young‘s Modulus for the material and is characteristic of that material. For example the velocity
in steel is 5900 metres per second, and in water 1400 metres per second. Ultrasonic energy is
considerably attenuated in air, and a beam propagated through solid will, on reaching an
interface (e.g. a defect, or intended hole, or the backwall) between that material and air reflect a
considerable amount of energy in the direction equal to the angle of incidence. For contact
testing the oscillating crystal is incorporated in a hand held probe, which is applied to the surface
of the material to be tested. To facilitate the transfer of energy across the small air gap between
the crystal and the test piece, a layer of liquid (referred to as ‗couplant‘), usually oil, water or
grease, is applied to the surface. As mentioned previously, the crystal does not oscillate
continuously but in short pulses, between each of which it is quiescent. Piezo electric materials
not only convert electrical pulses to mechanical oscillations, but will also transducer mechanical
oscillations into electrical pulses; thus we have not only a generator of sound waves but also a
detector of returned pulses. The crystal is in a state to detect returned pulses when it is quiescent.
The pulse takes a finite time to travel through the material to the interface and to be reflected
back to the probe

10.2 Basic Principles of Ultrasonic Testing

Ultrasonic Testing (UT) uses high frequency sound energy to conduct examinations and make
measurements. Ultrasonic inspection can be used for flaw detection/evaluation, dimensional

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measurements, material characterization, and more. To illustrate the general inspection principle,
a typical pulse/echo inspection configuration as illustrated below will be used.

A typical UT inspection system consists of several functional units, such as the pulser/receiver,
transducer, and display devices. A pulser/receiver is an electronic device that can produce high
voltage electrical pulses. Driven by the pulser, the transducer generates high frequency ultrasonic
energy. The sound energy is introduced and propagates through the materials in the form of
waves. When there is a discontinuity (such as a crack) in the wave path, part of the energy will
be reflected back from the flaw surface. The reflected wave signal is transformed into an
electrical signal by the transducer and is displayed on a screen. In the applet below, the reflected
signal strength is displayed versus the time from signal generation to when a echo was received.
Signal travel time can be directly related to the distance that the signal traveled. From the signal,
information about the reflector location, size, orientation and other features can sometimes be
gained.

Ultrasonic Inspection is a very useful and versatile NDT method. Some of the advantages of
ultrasonic inspection that are often cited include:

 It is sensitive to both surface and subsurface discontinuities.


 The depth of penetration for flaw detection or measurement is superior to other NDT
methods.
 Only single-sided access is needed when the pulse-echo technique is used.
 It is highly accurate in determining reflector position and estimating size and shape.
 Minimal part preparation is required.
 Electronic equipment provides instantaneous results.
 Detailed images can be produced with automated systems.
 It has other uses, such as thickness measurement, in addition to flaw detection.

As with all NDT methods, ultrasonic inspection also has its limitations, which include:

 Surface must be accessible to transmit ultrasound.


 Skill and training is more extensive than with some other methods.

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 It normally requires a coupling medium to promote the transfer of sound energy into the
test specimen.
 Materials that are rough, irregular in shape, very small, exceptionally thin or not
homogeneous are difficult to inspect.
 Cast iron and other coarse grained materials are difficult to inspect due to low sound
transmission and high signal noise.
 Linear defects oriented parallel to the sound beam may go undetected.
 Reference standards are required for both equipment calibration and the characterization
of flaws.

The above introduction provides a simplified introduction to the NDT method of ultrasonic
testing. However, to effectively perform an inspection using ultrasonics, much more about the
method needs to be known. The following pages present information on the science involved in
ultrasonic inspection, the equipment that is commonly used, some of the measurement
techniques used, as well as other information.

10.3 History of Ultrasonics

Prior to World War II, sonar, the technique of sending sound waves through water and observing
the returning echoes to characterize submerged objects, inspired early ultrasound investigators to
explore ways to apply the concept to medical diagnosis. In 1929 and 1935, Sokolov studied the
use of ultrasonic waves in detecting metal objects. Mulhauser, in 1931, obtained a patent for
using ultrasonic waves, using two transducers to detect flaws in solids. Firestone (1940) and
Simons (1945) developed pulsed ultrasonic testing using a pulse-echo technique.

Shortly after the close of World War II, researchers in Japan began to explore the medical
diagnostic capabilities of ultrasound. The first ultrasonic instruments used an A-mode
presentation with blips on an oscilloscope screen. That was followed by a B-mode presentation
with a two dimensional, gray scale image.

Japan's work in ultrasound was relatively unknown in the United States and Europe until the
1950s. Researchers then presented their findings on the use of ultrasound to detect gallstones,

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breast masses, and tumors to the international medical community. Japan was also the first
country to apply Doppler ultrasound, an application of ultrasound that detects internal moving
objects such as blood coursing through the heart for cardiovascular investigation.

Ultrasound pioneers working in the United States


contributed many innovations and important
discoveries to the field during the following decades.
Researchers learned to use ultrasound to detect
potential cancer and to visualize tumors in living
subjects and in excised tissue. Real-time imaging,
another significant diagnostic tool for physicians,
presented ultrasound images directly on the system's
CRT screen at the time of scanning. The introduction
of spectral Doppler and later color Doppler depicted
blood flow in various colors to indicate the speed and direction of the flow..

The United States also produced the earliest hand held "contact" scanner for clinical use, the
second generation of B-mode equipment, and the prototype for the first articulated-arm hand
held scanner, with 2-D images.

10.4 Present State of Ultrasonics

Ultrasonic testing (UT) has been practiced for


many decades. Initial rapid developments in
instrumentation spurred by the technological
advances from the 1950's continue today.
Through the 1980's and continuing through the
present, computers have provided technicians
with smaller and more rugged instruments with
greater capabilities.

Thickness gauging is an example application

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where instruments have been refined make data collection easier and better. Built-in data
logging capabilities allow thousands of measurements to be recorded and eliminate the need for a
"scribe." Some instruments have the capability to capture waveforms as well as thickness
readings. The waveform option allows an operator to view or review the A-scan signal of
thickness measurement long after the completion of an inspection. Also, some instruments are
capable of modifying the measurement based on the surface conditions of the material. For
example, the signal from a pitted or eroded inner surface of a pipe would be treated differently
than a smooth surface. This has led to more accurate and repeatable field measurements.

Many ultrasonic flaw detectors have a trigonometric function that allows for fast and accurate
location determination of flaws when performing shear wave inspections. Cathode ray tubes, for
the most part, have been replaced with LED or LCD screens. These screens, in most cases, are
extremely easy to view in a wide range of ambient lighting. Bright or low light working
conditions encountered by technicians have little effect on the technician's ability to view the
screen. Screens can be adjusted for brightness, contrast, and on some instruments even the color
of the screen and signal can be selected. Transducers can be programmed with predetermined
instrument settings. The operator only has to connect the transducer and the instrument will set
variables such as frequency and probe drive.

Along with computers, motion control and robotics have contributed to the advancement of
ultrasonic inspections. Early on, the advantage of a stationary platform was recognized and used
in industry. Computers can be programmed to inspect large, complex shaped components, with
one or multiple transducers collecting information. Automated systems typically consisted of an
immersion tank, scanning system, and recording system for a printout of the scan. The
immersion tank can be replaced with a squirter systems,
which allows the sound to be transmitted through a water
column. The resultant C-scan provides a plan or top view of
the component. Scanning of components is considerably faster
than contact hand scanning, the coupling is much more
consistent. The scan information is collected by a computer
for evaluation, transmission to a customer, and archiving.

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Today, quantitative theories have been developed to describe the interaction of the interrogating
fields with flaws. Models incorporating the results have been integrated with solid model
descriptions of real-part geometries to simulate practical inspections. Related tools allow NDE to
be considered during the design process on an equal footing with other failure-related
engineering disciplines. Quantitative descriptions of NDE performance, such as the probability
of detection (POD), have become an integral part of statistical risk assessment. Measurement
procedures initially developed for metals have been extended to engineered materials such as
composites, where anisotropy and inhomogeneity have become important issues. The rapid
advances in digitization and computing capabilities have totally changed the faces of many
instruments and the type of algorithms that are used in processing the resulting data. High-
resolution imaging systems and multiple measurement modalities for characterizing a flaw have
emerged. Interest is increasing not only in detecting, characterizing, and sizing defects, but also
in characterizing the materials. Goals range from the determination of fundamental
microstructural characteristics such as grain size, porosity, and texture (preferred grain
orientation), to material properties related to such failure mechanisms as fatigue, creep, and
fracture toughness. As technology continues to advance, applications of ultrasound also advance.
The high-resolution imaging systems in the laboratory today will be tools of the technician
tomorrow.

10.5 Future Direction of Ultrasonic Inspection

Looking to the future, those in the field of NDE see an


exciting new set of opportunities. The defense and
nuclear power industries have played a major role in
the emergence of NDE. Increasing global competition
has led to dramatic changes in product development
and business cycles. At the same time, aging
infrastructure, from roads to buildings and aircraft,
present a new set of measurement and monitoring
challenges for engineers as well as technicians.

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Among the new applications of NDE spawned by these changes is the increased emphasis on the
use of NDE to improve the productivity of manufacturing processes. Quantitative nondestructive
evaluation (QNDE) both increases the amount of information about failure modes and the speed
with which information can be obtained and facilitates the development of in-line measurements
for process control.

The phrase, "you cannot inspect in quality, you must build it in," exemplifies the industry's focus
on avoiding the formation of flaws. Nevertheless, manufacturing flaws will never be completely
eliminated and material damage will continue to occur in-service so continual development of
flaw detection and characterization techniques is necessary.

Advanced simulation tools that are designed for inspectability and their integration into
quantitative strategies for life management will contribute to increase the number and types of
engineering applications of NDE. With growth in engineering applications for NDE, there will
be a need to expand the knowledge base of technicians performing the evaluations. Advanced
simulation tools used in the design for inspectability may be used to provide technical students
with a greater understanding of sound behavior in materials. UTSIM, developed at Iowa State
University, provides a glimpse into what may be used in the technical classroom as an interactive
laboratory tool.

As globalization continues, companies will seek to develop, with ever increasing frequency,
uniform international practices. In the area of NDE, this trend will drive the emphasis on
standards, enhanced educational offerings, and simulations that can be communicated
electronically. The coming years will be exciting as NDE will continue to emerge as a full-
fledged engineering discipline.

10.6 Wavelength and Defect Detection

In ultrasonic testing, the inspector must make a decision about the frequency of the transducer
that will be used. As we learned on the previous page, changing the frequency when the sound
velocity is fixed will result in a change in the wavelength of the sound. The wavelength of the
ultrasound used has a significant effect on the probability of detecting a discontinuity. A general

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rule of thumb is that a discontinuity must be larger than one-half the wavelength to stand a
reasonable chance of being detected.

Sensitivity and resolution are two terms that are often used in ultrasonic inspection to describe a
technique's ability to locate flaws. Sensitivity is the ability to locate small discontinuities.
Sensitivity generally increases with higher frequency (shorter wavelengths). Resolution is the
ability of the system to locate discontinuities that are close together within the material or located
near the part surface. Resolution also generally increases as the frequency increases.

The wave frequency can also affect the capability of an inspection in adverse ways. Therefore,
selecting the optimal inspection frequency often involves maintaining a balance between the
favorable and unfavorable results of the selection. Before selecting an inspection frequency, the
material's grain structure and thickness, and the discontinuity's type, size, and probable location
should be considered. As frequency increases, sound tends to scatter from large or course grain
structure and from small imperfections within a material. Cast materials often have coarse grains
and other sound scatters that require lower frequencies to be used for evaluations of these
products. Wrought and forged products with directional and refined grain structure can usually
be inspected with higher frequency transducers.

Since more things in a material are likely to scatter a portion of


the sound energy at higher frequencies, the penetrating power
(or the maximum depth in a material that flaws can be located)
is also reduced. Frequency also has an effect on the shape of the
ultrasonic beam. Beam spread, or the divergence of the beam
from the center axis of the transducer, and how it is affected by
frequency will be discussed later.

It should be mentioned, so as not to be misleading, that a number of other variables will also
affect the ability of ultrasound to locate defects. These include the pulse length, type and voltage
applied to the crystal, properties of the crystal, backing material, transducer diameter, and the
receiver circuitry of the instrument. These are discussed in more detail in the material on signal-
to-noise ratio.

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10.7 Sound Propagation in Elastic Materials

In the previous pages, it was pointed out that sound waves propagate due to the vibrations or
oscillatory motions of particles within a material. An ultrasonic wave may be visualized as an
infinite number of oscillating masses or particles connected by means of elastic springs. Each
individual particle is influenced by the motion of its nearest neighbor and both inertial and elastic
restoring forces act upon each particle.

A mass on a spring has a single resonant frequency determined by its spring constant k and its
mass m. The spring constant is the restoring force of a spring per unit of length. Within the
elastic limit of any material, there is a linear relationship between the displacement of a particle
and the force attempting to restore the particle to its equilibrium position. This linear dependency
is described by Hooke's Law.

In terms of the spring model, Hooke's Law says that


the restoring force due to a spring is proportional to
the length that the spring is stretched, and acts in the
opposite direction. Mathematically, Hooke's Law is
written as F =-kx, where F is the force, k is the
spring constant, and x is the amount of particle
displacement. Hooke's law is represented graphically
it the right. Please note that the spring is applying a
force to the particle that is equal and opposite to the force pulling down on the particle.

10.8 Speed of Sound

Hooke's Law, when used along with Newton's Second Law, can explain a few things about the
speed of sound. The speed of sound within a material is a function of the properties of the
material and is independent of the amplitude of the sound wave. Newton's Second Law says that
the force applied to a particle will be balanced by the particle's mass and the acceleration of the
the particle. Mathematically, Newton's Second Law is written as F = ma. Hooke's Law then says
that this force will be balanced by a force in the opposite direction that is dependent on the

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amount of displacement and the spring constant (F = -kx). Therefore, since the applied force and
the restoring force are equal, ma = -kx can be written. The negative sign indicates that the force
is in the opposite direction.

Since the mass m and the spring constant k are constants for any given material, it can be seen
that the acceleration a and the displacement x are the only variables. It can also be seen that they
are directly proportional. For instance, if the displacement of the particle increases, so does its
acceleration. It turns out that the time that it takes a particle to move and return to its equilibrium
position is independent of the force applied. So, within a given material, sound always travels at
the same speed no matter how much force is applied when other variables, such as temperature,
are held constant.

10.9 Properties of material affect its speed of sound

Of course, sound does travel at different speeds in different materials. This is because the mass
of the atomic particles and the spring constants are different for different materials. The mass of
the particles is related to the density of the material, and the spring constant is related to the
elastic constants of a material. The general relationship between the speed of sound in a solid and
its density and elastic constants is given by the following equation:

Where V is the speed of sound, C is the elastic constant, and p is the material density. This
equation may take a number of different forms depending on the type of wave (longitudinal or
shear) and which of the elastic constants that are used. The typical elastic constants of a materials
include:

 Young's Modulus, E: a proportionality constant between uniaxial stress and strain.


 Poisson's Ratio, n: the ratio of radial strain to axial strain

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 Bulk modulus, K: a measure of the incompressibility of a body subjected to hydrostatic


pressure.
 Shear Modulus, G: also called rigidity, a measure of a substance's resistance to shear.
 Lame's Constants, l and m: material constants that are derived from Young's Modulus
and Poisson's Ratio.

When calculating the velocity of a longitudinal wave, Young's Modulus and Poisson's Ratio are
commonly used. When calculating the velocity of a shear wave, the shear modulus is used. It is
often most convenient to make the calculations using Lame's Constants, which are derived from
Young's Modulus and Poisson's Ratio.

It must also be mentioned that the subscript ij attached to C in the above equation is used to
indicate the directionality of the elastic constants with respect to the wave type and direction of
wave travel. In isotropic materials, the elastic constants are the same for all directions within the
material. However, most materials are anisotropic and the elastic constants differ with each
direction. For example, in a piece of rolled aluminum plate, the grains are elongated in one
direction and compressed in the others and the elastic constants for the longitudinal direction are
different than those for the transverse or short transverse directions.

Examples of approximate compressional sound velocities in materials are:

 Aluminum - 0.632 cm/microsecond


 1020 steel - 0.589 cm/microsecond
 Cast iron - 0.480 cm/microsecond.

Examples of approximate shear sound velocities in materials are:

 Aluminum - 0.313 cm/microsecond


 1020 steel - 0.324 cm/microsecond
 Cast iron - 0.240 cm/microsecond.

When comparing compressional and shear velocities, it can be noted that shear velocity is
approximately one half that of compressional velocity. The sound velocities for a variety of

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materials can be found in the ultrasonic properties tables in the general resources section of this
site.

10.10 Piezoelectric Transducers

The conversion of electrical pulses to mechanical vibrations and the conversion of returned
mechanical vibrations back into electrical energy is the basis for ultrasonic testing. The active
element is the heart of the transducer as it converts the electrical energy to acoustic energy, and

Piezoelectric Transducer

vice versa. The active element is basically a piece of polarized material (i.e. some parts of the
molecule are positively charged, while other parts of the molecule are negatively charged) with
electrodes attached to two of its opposite faces. When an electric field is applied across the
material, the polarized molecules will align themselves with the electric field, resulting in
induced dipoles within the molecular or crystal structure of the material. This alignment of
molecules will cause the material to change dimensions. This phenomenon is known as
electrostriction. In addition, a permanently-polarized material such as quartz (SiO2) or barium
titanate (BaTiO3) will produce an electric field when the material changes dimensions as a result
of an imposed mechanical force. This phenomenon is known as the piezoelectric effect.

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Additional information on why certain materials produce this effect can be found in the linked
presentation material, which was produced by the Valpey Fisher Corporation.

The active element of most acoustic transducers used today is a piezoelectric ceramic, which can
be cut in various ways to produce different wave modes. A large piezoelectric ceramic element
can be seen in the image of a sectioned low
frequency transducer. Preceding the advent
of piezoelectric ceramics in the early 1950's,
piezoelectric crystals made from quartz
crystals and magnetostrictive materials were
primarily used. The active element is still
sometimes referred to as the crystal by old
timers in the NDT field. When piezoelectric
ceramics were introduced, they soon became
the dominant material for transducers due to
their good piezoelectric properties and their
ease of manufacture into a variety of shapes
and sizes. They also operate at low voltage
and are usable up to about 300oC. The first piezoceramic in general use was barium titanate, and
that was followed during the 1960's by lead zirconate titanate compositions, which are now the
most commonly employed ceramic for making transducers. New materials such as piezo-
polymers and composites are also being used in some applications.

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The thickness of the active element is determined by the desired frequency of the transducer. A
thin wafer element vibrates with a wavelength that is twice its thickness. Therefore, piezoelectric

crystals are cut to a thickness that is 1/2 the desired radiated wavelength. The higher the
frequency of the transducer, the thinner the active element. The primary reason that high
frequency contact transducers are not produced is because the element is very thin and too
fragile.

10.11 Characteristics of Piezoelectric Transducers

The transducer is a very important part of the ultrasonic instrumentation system. As discussed on
the previous page, the transducer incorporates a piezoelectric element, which converts electrical
signals into mechanical vibrations (transmit mode) and mechanical vibrations into electrical
signals (receive mode). Many factors, including material, mechanical and electrical construction,
and the external mechanical and electrical load conditions, influence the behavior of a
transducer. Mechanical construction includes parameters such as the radiation surface area,
mechanical damping, housing, connector type and other variables of physical construction. As of
this writing, transducer manufacturers are hard pressed when constructing two transducers that
have identical performance characteristics.

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A cut away of a typical contact transducer is shown above. It was previously learned that the
piezoelectric element is cut to 1/2 the desired wavelength. To get as much energy out of the
transducer as possible, an impedance matching is placed between the active element and the face
of the transducer. Optimal impedance matching is achieved by sizing the matching layer so that
its thickness is 1/4 of the desired wavelength. This keeps waves that were reflected within the
matching layer in phase when they exit the layer (as illustrated in the image to the right). For
contact transducers, the matching layer is made from a material that has an acoustical impedance
between the active element and steel. Immersion transducers have a matching layer with an
acoustical impedance between the active element and water. Contact transducers also incorporate
a wear plate to protect the matching layer and active element from scratching.

The backing material supporting the crystal has a great influence on the damping characteristics
of a transducer. Using a backing material with an impedance similar to that of the active element
will produce the most effective damping. Such a transducer will have a wider bandwidth
resulting in higher sensitivity. As the mismatch in impedance between the active element and the
backing material increases, material penetration increases but transducer sensitivity is reduced.

10.12 Radiated Fields of Ultrasonic Transducers

The sound that emanates from a piezoelectric transducer does not originate from a point, but
instead originates from most of the surface of the piezoelectric element. Round transducers are
often referred to as piston source transducers because the sound field resembles a cylindrical
mass in front of the transducer. The sound field from a typical piezoelectric transducer is shown
below. The intensity of the sound is indicated by color, with lighter colors indicating higher
intensity.

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Since the ultrasound originates from a number of points along the transducer face, the ultrasound
intensity along the beam is affected by constructive and destructive wave interference as
discussed in a previous page on wave interference. These are sometimes also referred to as
diffraction effects. This wave interference leads to extensive fluctuations in the sound intensity
near the source and is known as the near field. Because of acoustic variations within a near field,
it can be extremely difficult to accurately evaluate flaws in materials when they are positioned
within this area.

The pressure waves combine to form a relatively uniform front at the end of the near field. The
area beyond the near field where the ultrasonic beam is more uniform is called the far field. In
the far field, the beam spreads out in a pattern originating from the center of the transducer. The
transition between the near field and the far field occurs at a distance, N, and is sometimes
referred to as the "natural focus" of a flat (or unfocused) transducer. The near/far field distance,
N, is significant because amplitude variations that characterize the near field change to a
smoothly declining amplitude at this point. The area just beyond the near field is where the
sound wave is well behaved and at its maximum strength. Therefore, optimal detection results
will be obtained when flaws occur in this area.

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For a piston source transducer of radius (a), frequency (f), and velocity (V) in a liquid or solid
medium, the applet below allows the calculation of the near/far field transition point.

10.13 Transducer Types

Ultrasonic transducers are manufactured for a


variety of applications and can be custom
fabricated when necessary. Careful attention
must be paid to selecting the proper
transducer for the application. A previous
section on Acoustic Wavelength and Defect
Detection gave a brief overview of factors that affect defect detectability. From this material, we
know that it is important to choose transducers that have the desired frequency, bandwidth, and

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focusing to optimize inspection capability. Most often the transducer is chosen either to enhance
the sensitivity or resolution of the system.

Transducers are classified into groups according to the application.

10.13.1 Contact transducers

are used for direct contact inspections, and are generally hand manipulated. They have elements
protected in a rugged casing to withstand sliding contact with a variety of materials. These
transducers have an ergonomic design so that they are easy to grip and move along a surface.
They often have replaceable wear plates to lengthen their useful life. Coupling materials of
water, grease, oils, or commercial materials are used to remove the air gap between the
transducer and the component being inspected.

10.13.2 Immersion transducers

These transducers do not contact the component. These


transducers are designed to operate in a liquid environment and all
connections are watertight. Immersion transducers usually have an
impedance matching layer that helps to get more sound energy
into the water and, in turn, into the component being inspected.
Immersion transducers can be purchased with a planer,
cylindrically focused or spherically focused lens. A focused
transducer can improve the sensitivity and axial resolution by
concentrating the sound energy to a smaller area. Immersion
transducers are typically used inside a water tank or as part of a squirter or bubbler system in scanning applications.

10.13.3 More on Contact Transducers

Contact transducers are available in a variety of configurations to improve their usefulness for a
variety of applications. The flat contact transducer shown above is used in normal beam
inspections of relatively flat surfaces, and where near surface resolution is not critical. If the
surface is curved, a shoe that matches the curvature of the part may need to be added to the face
of the transducer. If near surface resolution is important or if an angle beam inspection is needed,
one of the special contact transducers described below might be used.

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10.13.4 Dual element transducer

It contains two independently operated elements in a single


housing. One of the elements transmits and the other
receives the ultrasonic signal. Active elements can be chosen
for their sending and receiving capabilities to provide a
transducer with a cleaner signal, and transducers for special
applications, such as the inspection of course grained
material. Dual element transducers are especially well suited
for making measurements in applications where reflectors
are very near the transducer since this design eliminates the
ring down effect that single-element transducers experience
(when single-element transducers are operating in pulse echo mode, the element cannot start
receiving reflected signals until the element has stopped ringing from its transmit function). Dual
element transducers are very useful when making thickness measurements of thin materials and
when inspecting for near surface defects. The two elements are angled towards each other to
create a crossed-beam sound path in the test material.

10.13.5 Delay line transducers

These provide versatility with a variety of


replaceable options. Removable delay line, surface
conforming membrane, and protective wear cap
options can make a single transducer effective for a
wide range of applications. As the name implies, the
primary function of a delay line transducer is to
introduce a time delay between the generation of the
sound wave and the arrival of any reflected waves.
This allows the transducer to complete its "sending" function before it starts its "listening"
function so that near surface resolution is improved. They are designed for use in applications
such as high precision thickness gauging of thin materials and delamination checks in composite

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materials. They are also useful in high-temperature measurement applications since the delay
line provides some insulation to the piezoelectric element from the heat.

10.13.6 Angle beam transducers

These are typically used to introduce a refracted shear wave


into the test material. Transducers can be purchased in a
variety of fixed angles or in adjustable versions where the
user determines the angles of incidence and refraction. In the
fixed angle versions, the angle of refraction that is marked
on the transducer is only accurate for a particular material,
which is usually steel. The angled sound path allows the
sound beam to be reflected from the backwall to improve
detectability of flaws in and around welded areas. They are
also used to generate surface waves for use in detecting defects on the surface of a component.

10.13.7 Normal incidence shear wave transducers

These transducers are unique because they allow the introduction of shear waves directly into a
test piece without the use of an angle beam wedge. Careful design has enabled manufacturing of
transducers with minimal longitudinal wave contamination. The ratio of the longitudinal to shear
wave components is generally below -30dB.

10.13.7 Paint brush transducers

It is used to scan wide areas. These long and narrow transducers are made up of an array of
small crystals that are carefully matched to minimize variations in performance and maintain
uniform sensitivity over the entire area of the transducer. Paint brush transducers make it
possible to scan a larger area more rapidly for discontinuities. Smaller and more sensitive
transducers are often then required to further define the details of a discontinuity.

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10.14 Couplant

A couplant is a material (usually liquid) that facilitates the


transmission of ultrasonic energy from the transducer into
the test specimen. Couplant is generally necessary because
the acoustic impedance mismatch between air and solids
(i.e. such as the test specimen) is large. Therefore, nearly all
of the energy is reflected and very little is transmitted into
the test material. The couplant displaces the air and makes it
possible to get more sound energy into the test
specimen so that a usable ultrasonic signal can be
obtained. In contact ultrasonic testing a thin film of oil,
glycerin or water is generally used between the
transducer and the test surface.

When scanning over the part or making precise


measurements, an immersion technique is often used.
In immersion ultrasonic testing both the transducer and
the part are immersed in the couplant, which is typically
water. This method of coupling makes it easier to maintain
consistent coupling while moving and manipulating the
transducer and/or the part.

10.15 Pulser-Receivers

Ultrasonic pulser-receivers are well suited to general


purpose ultrasonic testing. Along with appropriate
transducers and an oscilloscope, they can be used for flaw detection and thickness gauging in a
wide variety of metals, plastics, ceramics, and composites. Ultrasonic pulser-receivers provide a
unique, low-cost ultrasonic measurement capability.

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The pulser section of the instrument


generates short, large amplitude electric
pulses of controlled energy, which are
converted into short ultrasonic pulses
when applied to an ultrasonic transducer.
Most pulser sections have very low
impedance outputs to better drive transducers. Control functions associated with the pulser
circuit include:

 Pulse length or damping (The amount of time the pulse is applied to the transducer.)
 Pulse energy (The voltage applied to the transducer. Typical pulser circuits will apply
from 100 volts to 800 volts to a transducer.)

In the receiver section the voltage signals produced by the transducer, which represent the
received ultrasonic pulses, are amplified. The amplified radio frequency (RF) signal is available
as an output for display or capture for signal processing. Control functions associated with the
receiver circuit include

 Signal rectification (The RF signal can be viewed as positive half wave, negative half
wave or full wave.)
 Filtering to shape and smooth return signals
 Gain, or signal amplification
 Reject control

The pulser-receiver is also used in material characterization work involving sound velocity or
attenuation measurements, which can be correlated to material properties such as elastic
modulus. In conjunction with a stepless gate and a spectrum analyzer, pulser-receivers are also
used to study frequency dependent material properties or to characterize the performance of
ultrasonic transducers.

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10.16 Angle Beams I

Angle Beam Transducers and wedges are typically used to introduce a refracted shear wave into
the test material. An angled sound path allows the sound beam to come in from the side, thereby
improving detectability of flaws in and around welded areas.

10.17 Angle Beams II

Angle Beam Transducers and wedges are typically used to introduce a refracted shear wave into
the test material. The geometry of the sample below allows the sound beam to be reflected from
the back wall to improve detectability of flaws in and around welded areas.

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10.18 Calibration Methods

Calibration refers to the act of evaluating and adjusting the precision and accuracy of
measurement equipment. In ultrasonic testing, several forms of calibration must occur. First, the
electronics of the equipment must be calibrated to ensure that they are performing as designed.
This operation is usually performed by the equipment manufacturer and will not be discussed
further in this material. It is also usually necessary for the operator to perform a "user
calibration" of the equipment. This user calibration is necessary because most ultrasonic
equipment can be reconfigured for use in a large variety of applications. The user must
"calibrate" the system, which includes the equipment settings, the transducer, and the test setup,

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to validate that the desired level of precision and accuracy are achieved. The term calibration
standard is usually only used when an absolute value is measured and in many cases, the
standards are traceable back to standards at the National Institute for Standards and Technology.

In ultrasonic testing, there is also a need for reference standards. Reference standards are used to
establish a general level of consistency in measurements and to help interpret and quantify the
information contained in the received signal. Reference standards are used to validate that the
equipment and the setup provide similar results from one day to the next and that similar results
are produced by different systems. Reference standards also help the inspector to estimate the
size of flaws. In a pulse-echo type setup, signal strength depends on both the size of the flaw and
the distance between the flaw and the transducer. The inspector can use a reference standard with
an artificially induced flaw of known size and at approximately the same distance away for the
transducer to produce a signal. By comparing the signal from the reference standard to that
received from the actual flaw, the inspector can estimate the flaw size.

This section will discuss some of the more common calibration and reference specimen that are
used in ultrasonic inspection. Some of these specimens are shown in the figure above. Be aware
that there are other standards available and that specially designed standards may be required for
many applications. The information provided here is intended to serve a general introduction to
the standards and not to be instruction on the proper use of the standards.

10.19 Weldments (Welded Joints)

The most commonly occurring defects in welded joints are porosity, slag inclusions, lack of side-
wall fusion, lack of inter-run fusion, lack of root penetration, undercutting, and longitudinal or
transverse cracks.

With the exception of single gas pores all the defects listed are usually well detectable by
ultrasonics. Most applications are on low-alloy construction quality steels, however, welds in
aluminum can also be tested. Ultrasonic flaw detection has long been the preferred method for
nondestructive testing in welding applications. This safe, accurate, and simple technique has
pushed ultrasonics to the forefront of inspection technology.

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Ultrasonic weld inspections are typically performed using a straight beam transducer in
conjunction with an angle beam transducer and wedge. A straight beam transducer, producing a
longitudinal wave at normal incidence into the test piece, is first used to locate any laminations
in or near the heat-affected zone. This is important because an angle beam transducer may not be
able to provide a return signal from a laminar flaw.

The second step in the inspection involves using an angle beam transducer to inspect the actual
weld. Angle beam transducers use the principles of refraction and mode conversion to produce
refracted shear or longitudinal waves in the test material. [Note: Many AWS inspections are
performed using refracted shear waves. However, material having a large grain structure, such as
stainless steel may require refracted longitudinal waves for successful inspections.] This
inspection may include the root, sidewall, crown, and heat-affected zones of a weld. The process
involves scanning the surface of the material around the weldment with the transducer. This
refracted sound wave will bounce off a reflector (discontinuity) in the path of the sound beam.

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With proper angle beam techniques, echoes returned from the weld zone may allow the operator
to determine the location and type of discontinuity.

To determine the proper scanning area for the weld, the inspector must first calculate the location
of the sound beam in the test material. Using the refracted angle, beam index point and material
thickness, the V-path and skip distance of the sound beam is found. Once they have been
calculated, the inspector can identify the transducer locations on the surface of the material
corresponding to the crown, sidewall, and root of the weld.

10.20 Advantages of Ultrasonic Flaw Detection

 Thickness and lengths up to 30 ft can be tested.


 Position, size and type of defect can be determined.
 Instant test results.
 Portable.
 Extremely sensitive if required.
 Capable of being fully automated.
 Access to only one side necessary.
 No consumables.

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10.21 Disadvantages of Ultrasonic Flaw Detection


 No permanent record available unless one of the more sophisticated test results and data
collection systems is used.
 The operator can decide whether the test piece is defective or not whilst the test is in
progress.
 Indications require interpretation (except for digital wall thickness gauges).
 Considerable degree of skill necessary to obtain the fullest information from the test.
 Very thin sections can prove difficult.

11 Applications of Non-Destructive Testing


11.1 Aerospace Industry
Testing components including aero-engine, Landing gear and air frame parts during production
11.2 Aircraft Overhaul
Testing components during overhaul including aero-engine and landing gear components
11.3 Automotive Industry
Testing Brakes-Steering and engine safety critical components for flaws introduced during
manufacture. Iron castings – material quality. Testing of diesel engine pistons up to marine
engine size.
11.4 Petrochemical & Gas Industries
Pipe-Line and tank internal corrosion measurement from outside. Weld testing on new work.
Automotive LPG tank testing
11.5 Railway Industry
Testing locomotive and rolling stock axles for fatigue cracks. Testing rail for heat induced
cracking. Diesel locomotive engines and structures.
11.6 Mining Industry
Testing of pit head equipment and underground transport safety critical components.
11.7 Agricultural Engineering
Testing of all fabricated, forged and cast components in agricultural equipment including those
in tractor engines.

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11.8 Power Generation


Boiler and pressure vessel testing for weld and plate defects both during manufacturing and in
subsequent service. Boiler pipe work thickness measurement and turbine alternator component
testing.
11.9 Iron Foundry
Testing ductile iron castings for metal strength on 100% quality control basis.
11.10 Shipbuilding Industry
Structural and welding testing. Hull and bulkhead thickness measurement. Engine components
testing.
11.11 Steel Industry
Testing of rolled and re-rolled products including billets, plate sheet and structural sections.
11.12 Pipe & Tube Manufacturing Industry
Raw plate and strip testing. Automatic ERW tube testing. Oil line pipe spiral weld testing

12. Conclusion

In Bangladesh NDT is a new technology and system for inspection and testing. But many
developed countries use it because of its huge benefits.

Modern NDT methods are becoming ever more quantitative and non-intrusive. This is valid for
NDT of new construction and for maintenance inspections.

For NDT of new construction this implies that, the more one knows about the material properties
and operational conditions, the better the acceptance criteria for weld defects can be based on the
required weld integrity and fine-tuned to a specific application. In pipeline industry, this is
already going to happen.

In plant maintenance, the availability of quantitative and non-invasive screening NDT methods
will reduce the time needed for shutdowns and increase the intervals between them. Modern
NDT methods will become just as important a tool for Risk Based Inspection approaches and
maintenance planning as operational parameters and degradation mechanisms already are.

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In both these NDT application fields, new construction and maintenance, these
tendencies can lead to rationalization, with cost reduction as a result, maintaining existing
safety levels.

13. Recommendation

The Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) is a new technology in Bangladesh. Saj Engineering &
Trading Company is the first Company that bring this technology in Bangladesh. The NDT
equipments are very expensive. Although recently some others company come in market to give
this service. For a developing country like Bangladesh, NDT is very needed for industrial
development. The company should make so more focus about this technology in industrial level.

Al the engineers should know about this technology, especially in industrial level. The
Bangladesh Government has the only one institution that only offers the NDT courses. That is
the Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission – NDT Division. Another Institution, Bangladesh
Boiler Association also use this technology for the boiler testing and inspection. All companies
should have the NDT division with NDT practitioner.

14. References
1. ASNDT- American Society of Non-Destructive Testing.
2. Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission- NDT Division.
3. Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission – NDT Division ( NDT fundamental course
Handbook)
4. American Airlines. Nondestructive training manual: qualifications programDrury CG,
Watson J. (2000). Human factors good practices in borescope inspection. FAA/Office of
Aviation Medicine, Washington, D.C.. @ URL: http://hfskyway.faa.gov. Oct 2002. 16
Drury CG. (1999).
5. Human factors good practices in fluorescent penetrant inspection. Human factors in
aviation maintenance - phase nine, progress report,FAA/Human Factors in Aviation
Maintenance. @ URL: http://hfskyway.faa.gov.Oct 2002.

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6. Adams LK, Czepiel EJ, Krulee GK, Watson J. (1999). Job task analysis of the aviation
maintenance technician. FAA/Office of Aviation Medicine, Washington,D.C. @ URL:
http://hfskyway.faa.gov. Oct 2002.
7. Allen D. (1970). Phase III Report: A national study of the aviation mechanics occupation.
FAA, Washington, DC. [Cited by Adams et al. (1999). Job task analysis of the aviation
maintenance technician. FAA/Office of Aviation Medicine, Washington, D.C. @ URL:
http://hfskyway.faa.gov. Oct 2002.]
8. Bray, Don E. and Don McBride: ―Nondestructive Testing Techniques,‖ John Wiley & Sons,
Inc., 1992.
9. McMaster, Robert C.: ―Nondestructive Testing Handbook,‖ Volume II, The Ronald Press
Company, New York 1963.
10. Metals Handbook, Volume 17: ―Nondestructive Inspection and Quality Control,‖ pp. 89-
128, ASM International, Metals Park, OH, 1989.
11. ASTM E 1444-93: ―Standard Practice for Magnetic Particle Examination,‖ American
Society for Testing and Materials, 1916 Race St. Philadelphia, PA 18103. MSFC-STD-
1249: ―Standard NDE Guidelines and Requirements for Fracture Control Programs,‖
Marshall Space Flight Center, AL 35812, September 1985.
12. R.A. Quinn and C.C. Sigl ―Radiography in Modern Industry,‖ 4th Edition, , Eastman Kodak
Company, 1980.
13. ―Industrial Radiography Radiation Safety Personnel,‖ ASNT Practice No. ASNT-CP-
IRRSP-1A, 2001 Edition, American Society for Nondestructive Testing.
14. ASNT Level III Study Guide and Supplement on Visual and Optical Testing, American
Society for Nondestructive Testing, Columbus, OH, 2005.
15. Reliability of Visual Inspection for Highway Bridges, Publication Nos. FHWA-RD-01-020
and FHWA-RD-01-021, June 2001.
16. Reliability of Visual Inspection for Highway Bridges, Publication Nos. FHWA-RD-01-020
and FHWA-RD-01-021, June 2001.
17. F.A. Iddings, Visual Inspection, Materials Evaluation, Vol. 62,No. 5, May 2004, pp. 500-
501.
18. ASTM International, ASTM Volume 03.03 Nondestructive Testing
19. ASNT, Nondestructive Testing Handbook

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20. Bray, D.E. and R.K. Stanley, 1997, Nondestructive Evaluation: A Tool for Design,
Manufacturing and Service; CRC Press, 1996.
21. Hellier, C., Handbook of Nondestructive Evaluation, McGraw-Hill Professional; 2001
22. Shull, P.J., Nondestructive Evaluation: Theory, Techniques, and Applications, Marcel
Dekker Inc., 2002.
23. Albert S. Birks, Robert E. Green, Jr., technical editors ; Paul McIntire, editor. Ultrasonic
testing, 2nd ed. Columbus, OH : American Society for Nondestructive Testing, 1991.
ISBN 0931403049.
24. Josef Krautkrämer, Herbert Krautkrämer. Ultrasonic testing of materials, 4th fully rev.
ed. Berlin; New York: Springer-Verlag, 1990. ISBN 3540512314.
25. J.C. Drury. Ultrasonic Flaw Detection for Technicians, 3rd ed., UK: Silverwing Ltd.
2004. (See Chapter 1 online (PDF, 61 kB)).
26. Nondestructive Testing Handbook, Third ed.: Volume 7, Ultrasonic Testing. Columbus,
OH: American Society for Nondestructive Testing.
27. Detection and location of defects in electronic devices by means of scanning ultrasonic
microscopy and the wavelet transform measurement, Volume 31, Issue 2, March 2002,
Pages 77–91, L. Angrisani, L. Bechou, D. Dallet, P. Daponte, Y. Ousten
28. Cartz, Louis (1995). Nondestructive Testing. A S M International.
29. Blitz, Jack; G. Simpson (1991). Ultrasonic Methods of Non-Destructive Testing.
Springer-Verlag New York, LLC.
30. www.asndt.com- (NDT Course Material)

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