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Ultrasonic Testing -Level II

Non Destructive Testing

Testing Classification NDT

Surface NDT

Voluminar NDT

Visual MPI




Eddy Current Test

Visual Inspection on Welds /Belts

Acoustics Emission Testing


Sound waves are used as a mode of communication to locate flaws on a medium such as solid, liquid and gases through mechanical vibrations To generate a sound waves a transducer is used to convert electrical to mechanical vibrations & vice versa

Wave Generation
Let us see on the left how the tuning fork is struck by a mallet , it vibrates & produces sound waves by compressing the air.These waves travel through air to the ear of the listener. Soon the tuning fork vibrations die and no longer produce waves.

Wave Generation
In the same manner a short pulse of electrical current hits and excites a transducer (crystal) which vibrates and the sound beam from the transducer then travels through a couplant which may be water,oil etc to the front piece of the test piece. See the figure in the left.

Wave Generation

In actual work a high frequency transmitter applies electrical pulse to a piezoelectric crystal. Piezo in greek is to press. This crystal transform electrical energy into mechanical vibrations & in reverse when it vibrates produces a electric current.

Sound Beam Reflection

Sound beam react in the same way as light. For e.g. When they interrupt a object they reflect most of the sound beam energy, you can see on the adjacent sketch about the reflection.

Wave Motion

Longitudinal waves or compression waves Transverse or shear waves Surface or Raleigh waves Lamb or plate waves Rod or love waves

Wave Motion- Comparision

Nature of Sound
Wavelength =V/F. Where v=velocity of sound & F is the frequency in CPS or hertz. What is sound? Sound can be defined as vibrations with a pitch in the audible range whose F is less than 20khz.

Material Aluminium Steel Copper Brass Perspex

Water Air

Long 6320 5900 4700 3830 2730

1483 330

Shear 3080 3245 2260 2050 1430

Terms To Know
Reflection Refraction(bending) Diffraction(direction changes) Acoustic impedanceresistance to flow between 2 media of different acoustic velocity..Z= x v Reflection% = (Z1-Z2/Z1+Z2) 2 x100

Terms To Know
Attenuation- loss of ultrasonic energy = absorption + scattering. Mode conversion: The transformation of ultrasonic energy to another waveform & velocity due to refraction or reflection.

Through transmission testing Reflection or pulse echo Tandem & delta techniques Resonance or stationary waves

Techniques of Ultrasonic Testing

Through Transmission Testing

The transmitting & receiving probes are on opposite sides of the specimen. Presence of an internal defect will be indicated by a reduction in amplitude.

Pulse Echo Testing

In this method the transceiver probe is placed on one side of specimen and presence of defect is indicated by the reception of an echo before the boundary signal.

Tandem & Delta

When 2 transducers are mounted on a probe or separated in two probes and used as shown in the illustration.

Resonance or Stationary Waves

Resonance method is used in thickness measurement. Resonance is a character of vibrating body , usually it applies when the thickness of the material is /2 or more. Controlling the wavelength is achieved by adjusting the frequency, Which will produce condition of resonance in determining thick.. Of plate.

The generation of ultrasound is dependent on the special properties possessed by a crystal either naturally occurring or artificially manufactured. A natural crystal is quartz, which can be cut at different axis to produce vibrations in different modes. Due to poor efficiency quartz is used for inspection. X cut crystals are cut perpendicular to X axis and produce longitudinal sound waves - Y cut crystal produce shear waves. Quartz are replaced by polarized ceramic crystals.

Piezoelectric Crystals
Quartz Lithium sulphate Barium titanate Lead Metanobiate Lead Zirconate titanate Frequency of a crystal depends on the thickness. T = v/2f.


X-cut crystal produce L waves Y-cut crystal produces T waves Good qualities Resistant to wear Insoluble in water Resistant to ageing Demerits High voltage required to give low frequency Inefficient generator

Lithium Sulphate
Efficient receiver Low electrical impedance Does not age Good resolution Dissolves in water Broken easily Decompose at temp exceed 130C

Barium Titanate
Efficient generator of sound Good sensitivity Needs low voltage It deteriorates over a period of time. Curie point at which crystal depolarizes at 120C so heating ruins it.

Lead Zirconate Titanate(PZT)

Has a good curie point (350c) Has good resolution Does not dissolve in water Is tough & resist aging Easily damped PZT is used in most of the probes

Types of Probes
Compressional single crystal probes Angle probes Twin crystal probes

Probes- Normal & Angle Design

Twin Crystal

Pulse Length or Pulse Width

Pulse width: pulse width is a important contract factor in flaw detection. A longer pulse will have less resolving power. Pulse width is controlled by mechanical damping.

Pulse Width
Different pulses

Refraction Law
When a incident energy travel from Perspex strikes an air interface at 90 all the energy is reflected When it strikes at an angle, energy is reflected in two modes longitudinal & shear

Refraction Law
When a incident energy travel from Perspex reaches a medium in steel, some energy refracted in steel either long. Or shear. Snells law express: SinA/sin B = velocity in medium1/velocity in medium 2

Ultrasonic Beam
Dead zone, near zone or fressnel zone Far zone or fraunhofer zone

Ultrasonic Beam
Near zone: thickness measurements. Detection of defects. Sizing of large defects only. N=d2/4. Where d=diameter. = Wavelength.

Ultrasonic Beam
Far zone: the sound waves follow an exponential decay curve. Large reflectors. Ampl. 1/distance. Small reflectors. Ampl. 1/distance2.

Ultrasonic Flaw Detector

Pulse generator Time base Transmitter Receiver/amplifier Cathode ray tube(CRT) Attenuator

Ultrasonic Flaw Detector

Generator: triggers electrical pulse at specific interval to timebase & to transmitter circuit. Time base - obtain linear interval of pulse from left to right on CRT relates to T or D. Transmitter : provide short pulses of energy. Amplifier: to amplify the return pulses. Attenuator: measure the ratio of attenuation in volts. CRT-to display.

Gain= 20 Log10H1/H2

The ability to find a smallest reflector at the maximum testing range by a Ultrasonic flaw detection system is called Sensitivity Sensitivity depends on
a. Probe and flaw detector b. frequency of probe c. material properties d. Signal to noise ratio

DGS Diagram

DAC Curve

How to Measure Attenuation

Select a normal single crystal probe of certain diameter & frequency. Calculate the N.Z of probe. Calculate 3 NZ. Scan the test specimen. Set First back wall echo greater than 3NZ. Note the dB. Check the amplitude difference when double the distance. Reduce 6dB from the difference ( Beam spread). Divide the result by2 Distance. The result is in dB/mm.

Transfer Correction
Why Transfer correction is required? Reference blocks have smooth surface. whereas Test objects have rough or uneven surface. Absorption in test object is different from Reference block. Artificial defects from Reference block is different from Actual.

Transfer correction for Normal Probe

1. Place the Probe on the RB and turn the BWE to FSH. Note the Gain Settings. 2. Now place the probe on the test material for the same range bring BWE to FSH & Note the Gain settings. The difference of gain setting in step1 & Step 2 is called Transfer Correction.

Transfer correction for Angle Probe

1. Place the T & R Probe on the RB and bring the BWE to FSH. Note the Gain Settings. 2. Now place the probe on the test material for the same range bring BWE to FSH & Note the Gain settings. The difference of gain setting in step 1 & Step 2 is called Transfer Correction.