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Published by Jayesh

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Published by: Jayesh on Sep 29, 2011
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Half amplitude / 6 dB drop technique :
Half amplitude technique for defining the ends of a discontinuity isused when it is longer than the crystal size of the probe. This is themost popular technique for discontinuity length measurement. After maximizing the discontinuity indication, set this signal to aconvenient height [ ~ 80 % ]. The probe is then moved towards right,parallel to the discontinuity or the weld seam as appropriate, up tothe position where the signal drops to half the set amplitude. A pointis marked with a marker above the discontinuity locationcorresponding to the centerline of the probe crystal. A similar point isfound bymoving the probe towards the left. The distance betweenthese two points is the length of the discontinuity.The discontinuity length measured by this technique always resultsin an over estimation of the actual size. This is because the half intensity line is located at an angle to the main axis of the beam[centerline of the crystal].The error will depend on the size and frequency of the probe andthe beam path distance tothe discontinuity. The shape at the endsof the discontinuity will also influence the measurement. Small crystalprobes [ 4 MHz, 8 X 9, 10 mm ] should be preferred for themeasurements.This measurement error can be minimizedby plotting the half amplitude beam boundary in the horizontal plane using the IOWbeam profile block and using the graph thus obtained for correctingthe length at the applicable flaw depth.
Edge approach technique :
When the discontinuity size is much smaller than the size of thecrystal, half amplitude technique of measurement does not producesatisfactory result. A different method called edge approach techniqueis used.In this method the edge of the ultrasoundbeam is used to find the starting edge of thediscontinuity.Once the presence of the discontinuity isconfirmed, the scanning starts from a positionwhere the discontinuity signal is not visible onthe CRT screen.The probe is now slowly moved towards thediscontinuity up to the position where thediscontinuity indicationjust begins to appear onthe CRT screen. A point above the discontinuitylocation is marked which coincides with the linepassing through the sidewall of the probe,facing the discontinuity. A similar point is to be found by scanning thediscontinuity by probe movement from the other end. The distance between these two points isthe length of the discontinuity.
Angle probe DAC with side drilled hole block :
Side drilled hole blocks are widely used for plotting the DACcurve for weld testing. This method compares the reflectivity of aflaw with that of the tangential area of the horizontal hole at therelevant test distance and is thus echo amplitude dependent whenassessing flaw acceptability. These blocks contain one inch or moredeep drilled hole, with the hole axis parallel to the scanningsurface and perpendicular to the edge.The side of the holereflects ultrasound energy incident at any angle.The diameter of the hole normally increases with block thickness. A 1.6 mmdiameter reference hole provides good test sensitivity for most of the weld testing applications.Depending on the block thicknessT,holes are drilled at1/4 T,1/2 T, 3/4 Ton the edge of the block.Plotting the DAC curve : A block is selectedwhose thickness[
]most closely matchesthepart thickness[equal to or within 10% oftest thickness]andcontains the hole, specified in thetest procedure in use.The maximized signal from the hole which produces shortestbeam path,[Pos 1 or 2] isset to 80 % screen height.The probeshould be at leastone half inch awayfrom the edgeof the blockto avoid corner effect. The peak of the signal is marked on theface of the CRT screen. Without changing the gain control,maximized signals from other positions [ Pos 2, 3, 4 ] are markedand a curve is drawn through all these marks to complete theDAC curve.A 50 % curve is also drawn by 6 dB reduction method.Minimum three signal peaks are required to plot the DAC.For a 1/4 T hole, signal from position 2 should be preferred asthe first reference point of the DAC curve. If the weld crown isground flush and the probe can move over the weld surface,signal from position 1 maybe used as the first reference point. Inangle beam testing of unground welds, the sound beam enters theweld zone after traveling a certain distance in the test materialand depends on the location of the exit pointon the probe body.The DAC curve level falls sharply for higher frequency miniature[
4 MHz,
10 mm ] probes.Flaws producing,> 100% DAC signal is normally rejected or acertain length is permitted by the code. Acertain length is alsopermitted, for 50 % or more DAC signals. These signals are to berecorded in the report for future reference.For ASME pressure vessels, > 20 % DAC signals are to beevaluated for crack, lack offusion and lack of penetration.Thesedefects are not acceptable regardless of echo amplitude.Important :
The sound attenuation, surface condition and contact areaof the block should be similar to the test part.
If possible, the block is to be prepared from the testmaterial itself.
Transfer correction of the reference test sensitivity will berequired if the block is different from the test material.
It is preferable to setup the test sensitivity on a blockequal in thickness to the test part. This will produce aDAC curve with sufficient test length and internalreflections similar to the test part. Thickness difference of 10 % is acceptable.
The DAC curve [ level ] must be at least 20 % screenheight up to the full test distance. If required more thanone curve should be plotted for flaw evaluation.Side drilled hole block thickness and holesize in inches for weld testing as per ASME Sec V.plateblockholeholethk, Tthksizelocationup to 1T or 3 / 43 / 321/4, 1/2, 3/4T>1 to 2T or 1.51 / 8>2 to 4T or 33 / 16>4 to 6T or 51 / 4>6 to 8T or 75 / 16>8 to 10T or 93 / 8
Angle beam probe :
 Angle probes are used for detecting flaws oriented at an angle tothe material surface. They will miss flat reflectors, parallel or perpendicular to the scanning surface.The angled beam must hit thereflecting plane of the discontinuity at 90
for maximum reflection. Angle beam reflects well from corners but may undergo wave modeconversion.Usually shear wave probes are used in angle beam testing, becausethe refracted longitudinal wave probe will have a shear wavecomponent of weaker intensity in the test material. Longitudinal waveangle probes are specially useful for testing austenitic stainless steelwelds and inside surface of highly curved hollow parts and welds.Shear wave probes are used for testing welds, material defects inpipes, tubes, plates and sheets and in irregular shapes where fullcontact testing area is not available. Angle beam probes use the principle of refraction and modeconversion to produce refracted longitudinal and shear waves in thetest part. In an angle beam probe, longitudinal wave is converted torefracted longitudinal or shear wave by means of an angled plasticwedge. The wedge is cut at an angle to provide an incident beamangle to produce refracted longitudinal or shear wave at the desiredangle inSteel, because steel istested in most applications. For designing small crystal low frequency probes, incident angle calculationbased on snell’s law fails because of wider beam spread associatedwith these probes.The refracted angles will changein other materialsbecause of velocity difference.A probe of 45
in steel will equal 43
in aluminum.The wedges have serrations cut on the front surfaceand fitted with absorbing medium to prevent internal reflections fromproducing unwanted echoes but some spurious echoes are oftendetectable just after the initial pulse. The wedge can be an integralpart or can be detachable. In detachable system, a single transducer can be configured todifferent angles by changing the wedge and iseconomical. The detachable wedges are bigger and absorbs moreenergy. The detachable type requires couplant between the transducer and the wedge to permit transmission of ultrasound into the wedge.Standard angles are 35, 45, 60, 70 and 80
in steel.80
and 35
probes have limited applications due to prevalence of surface wavesfrom 80
and presence of longitudinal waves from 35
probes. Crystalsizes around 10 mm for miniature and 20 mm for bigger probes aremost popular. Probes with 12.5 mm crystal size is normallyrecommended for standard test applications. Rectangular crystals areoften used. Bigger probes have higher sensitivity and sharply focusedsound beam and permit flaw detection at higher depth but cannot beplaced very close to the weld edge. 4 MHz, 8 X 9 / 10 mm probes arevery popular for their small contact area, high resolution and sharpechoes and are used up to a test distance of 200 mm in steel. Larger probes are mostly used for thick welds and for applications wheresufficient probe contact area is available and a large areais to bescanned. A 20 X 22 mm, 2 MHz probe can detect a 2 mm reflector upto a distance of 700 mm.Twin crystal angle probes, longitudinal and shear, are available for direct scanning on ground weld surfaces and low thickness materials.These probes are more suitable for testing stainless steel and soundabsorbing materials.With use, the beam exit point and the refracted beam angle willchange with acrylic wear and should be checked before each use.The beam angle change should be controlled within + /-2
.Newacrylic soles can be pasted witharalditeto repair the wear.The frontcorner of the sole should be shaped to reduce spurious echoes.Performance : A good angle probe with a standard flaw detector, should produce aminimum 75% signal from the 100 mm radius of a standardIIW-V1 block with a minimum of 40 dB gain reserve.The probe should resolve at leastthree of the five holes [clearlydetectable peaks] in the IOW beam profile block.Noise from internal reflections should not exceed 5% screen height,at all the working test sensitivity levels.Beam axis abnormalityshould be checked by maximizing a signaland moving the probe forward and backward and rotating left andright, while monitoring the falling signal. The signal should fallcontinuously without any sudden rise in signal height.

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