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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

CAT 400 Project Proposal:


Automatic Laser Welding Defect Detection And
Classification Using Image Segmentation Algorithm
[Intelligent System/SC151616]
[Muhammad Azeem Bin Abdul Halim], [Ahmad Sufril Azlan Mohamed, Dr.]
[mazeem.ucom12@student.usm.my], [sufril@usm.my]
School of Computer Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia
11800 USM, Penang, Malaysia
Abstract
This paper describees a detection of commons defects in laser welding of structural
aluminium alloy. To overcome these problems, a technique has been introduced to
detect defects automatically and effectively using the image segmentation technique.
Although, this technique has been well developed, it does suffer from several
disadvantages of radiographic images taken are of poor quality, as well as the
microscopic size of the defects together with poor orientation relatively to the size and
thickness of the evaluated parts. Using image segmentation algorithm, allows the
defects to be automatically inspected and measured within the welded surface such as
cracks, porosity and foreign inclusions, which may be weakening the welded parts.
The motivation of this project is to build a system that compliments the process of
identifying the faults from the welding process by using the existing image
segmentation algorithm such as otsus method, k-mean clustering, watershed
segmentation and texture filters. These algorithms will then be tested and optimized to
automatically identify and classify the types of faults. The output of the developed
system will produce a measured analysis which can then be used to describe
accordingly to the conventional testing such as tensile and force test towards the
welded part of the aluminium alloy. The benefits of this project will be describe the
faults and defects of the welded aluminium for construction and manufacturing.
Keywords: Image Segmentation, weld defect detection, laser welding, aluminium
alloy
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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

1. Project Background
Welding is the most important process in manufacturing industry particularly using
the steel alloy. The use of Laser welding for aluminium is gaining its popularity due to
its cheaper construction material, and with the use of laser benefits in terms of higher
temperature of heat applied and capable of welding at greater precision. Despite that,
due to the high temperature and various welding situations, the process using the
aluminium allow is naturally complicated and nonlinear, making it prone to a number
of defects, such as porosity, undercuts, surface holes, and solidification cracking
which are often found in laser welds [1]. In order to solve this problem, several
methods will be used to detect defects based on image segmentation.
Image processing is a method to process an image into digital form. So, in
order to get some useful information from it, some operations must be performed on
it. Because of fast growing technologies nowadays, this application is very useful in
various aspects of a business and manufacturing industry. There are several purpose of
image processing such as image sharpening and restoration that will create a better
image and visualization to observe the objects that are not visible, image recognition
that will distinguish the objects in an image, and so on. Meanwhile, the purpose of
image segmentation is to divide the image into regions with different characteristics
and extract its features into the related goals [12]. There are many different ways to
perform image segmentation such as thresholding methods, color-based segmentation,
transform methods, and texture methods.
The objectives of this project are laid out as below:

To identify the appropriate existing algorithms of image segmentation


using the microscopic images of welded area for fault detection.

To compare several existing algorithms of image segmentation applied in


welding fault detection and select the one with optimum result.

To identify faults and defects within welding process of aluminium alloy


and classify it.

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

To optimize the chosen algorithm and to build a complete image


segmentation system to measure and classify the fault found in the welding
process.

To provide visual analysis of the measured faults and defects to


compliment other testing operations such as the hardness test, tensile test
and elevated temperature test.

2. Problem Statement
Welding the structure of aluminium alloy may contain more defects compare to other
types of steel alloy. This is because aluminium alloy composes of different material
composition compared to other steel alloys, and usually purposely hardened to match
the strength of steel alloy, which can lead to its natural weakening states at the welded
areas. Furthermore, cracks and porosities are some of the problems in laser welding
usually found in most welded materials [11].
Cracks happen when applying stress and tension to the welded area while
porosities happen when there are gasses trapped within the solidify welded area thus
weakening the strength of the welded structure. The process of identifying these faults
require many steps and train eyes which is time consuming and very hard to be done.
However, current technology enables images to be taken at microscopic level with
high resolution, and with the use of image processing technique, image segmentation
can be used to automatically extract and classify these faults and measuring them
[1,3]
Figure 2.1(a) shows an example of welding defect using the Scanning Electron
Microscope (SEM) taken at the The School of Mechanical Engineering, USM. The
welded interface has porosity and slag usually occur when the gas used is not enough
or the surface contained contaminants, and thus weakening the strength of the welded
area (see figure 2.1b).

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

(a)

(b)

Figure 2.1: (a) Shows the examples of welding defect at microscopic level using the
Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM). (b) porosity after welding process [11].

3. Motivation
Due to fault detection found in the steel alloy several problems have been heavily
researched and developed [7-9]. The motivation of the proposed system is to
overcome the problem arises from the defect detection found in the hardened
aluminium alloy which is very new in the construction and manufacturing industries.
After the system is develop completely, it can be implement in the manufacturing
industry and helps the engineers to detect any faults found visually and classify them.
The results are then further validated with the conventional method of testing such as
tensile and strength tests. This will ease the burden of having a train eyes to manually
calculate and measure the faults and can effectively provides an automatic visual
inspection at microscopic level.

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

4. Proposed Solution
The Segmentation processes are the part an image is partitioned into regions. In this
paper, we presented a number of methods and show the possible improvements that
can be achieved. By using the image segmentation algorithm technique, 2d images are
converted to grayscale [5] from the images and analyzed to automatically to detect
and isolate the defects found right after the welding process. The 2d grayscale image
will then be used to detect cracks of the outer surface and specimens are to be cut into
smaller parts which will then be captured again using SEM to detect anomalies of the
inner surface.
An effective and useful technique will be listed and selected to perform image
segmentation on the image which is where the system will based on during the
development phase and provides a comprehensive environment for data analysis, and
data visualization There are several general-purpose algorithms and technique that
will be used for image segmentation and are shown in figure 4.1 [6].

Figure 4.1: List of segmentation techniques

The Otsus method, is the simplest method of image segmentation. This


method is based on a threshold value to turn a gray-scale image into a binary image
(see figure 4.2)

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

Figure 4.2: image of Otsus technique [10].


As for K-means clustering, the algorithm partitioned and relocates instances by
moving them from one cluster to another until desired clustering structure is obtained
(see figure 4.3).

Figure 4.3: image of K-means clustering technique [10].


Watershed segmentation however [2], is a classical algorithm used for separating
different objects in an image. Starting from user-defined markers, the watershed
algorithm treats pixel values as a local topography (elevation) see figure 4.4.

Figure 4.4: image of watershed segmentation technique [10].

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

Lastly, the texture filters is a set of metrics calculated in image processing designed to
quantify the perceived texture if an image. Image texture gives us information about
the spatial arrangement of color or intensities in an image or selected region of an
image (see figure 4.5).

Figure 4.5: image of texture filters technique [10].

The development process is listed out in figure 4.6 showing the flowchart of
each process. The algorithm starts with the reading of SEM image. The image which
displays fault in the aluminium alloy is going to be processed one at a time. After the
image is being read and stored, it is going to be converted into 2d grayscale image.
This process is important because it helps the system to analyze the image correctly
using the mentioned image segmentation techniques.
Next, the edges and lines of the image are processed and each of the features
are identified and extracted. In order to facilitate the process, a library called OpenCV
will be used during the development of the system. Before the fault detection is
calculated the image is being segmented into several segments. After this process, the
fault detection is measured and the result is being displayed to the user either by
visual data or in table forms. Overall, the GUI and the development of the algorithm
are to be programmed using Visual C++.

Figure 4.6: Development Process

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In general, these image segmentation process contributes part of the fault


detection process typically used in a welding process. Figure 4.7 shows the steps
taken for identifying the faults and the image segmentation analysis is positioned
before the hardness test. SEM images used are of x10, x25 and x27 microns and these
are taken after the grinding and polishing process.

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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

Figure 4.7: Welding Process

5. Benefits / Impact / Significance of Project


The main significant of the project is to better analyze the fault found in aluminum
welded materials. This will benefit the manufacturing industry and simultaneously
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CAT400 Undergraduate Major Project Proposal

saves time and costs of using trained eyes by manual inspection. In addition, the
algorithm can represent a visual form of inspection and the data analyzed can be used
into something meaningful to the engineers to compliment their method of measuring
the aluminium alloys strength and durability

6. Uniqueness of Proposed Solution


The use of hardened aluminium alloy for welding is new for the construction and
manufacturing domain. The algorithm used for developing this system is unique as it
helps to solve the manufacturing problems of using hardened aluminimum alloy
materials and automatically detect and measure the faults and defects after the
welding process. This will enhance the overall simplicity and effectiveness of the
system.

7. Expected Outcomes
The expected outcomes of this project is a measureable analysis inspected visually in
terms of the quality of the welded surface. In order to better visualize the data, a graph
is to be presented accordingly based on the result obtained. This process will help the
engineers to better understand the outcome of every welded surface of every
conditions and will give further insight and evidence of how and why the welded
areas can fail.

8. Status of the Project


The proposed solution is an enhancement over existing algorithm and it is going to be
developed from scratch based on the requirements set by the welded process from the
engineer at School of Mechanical Engineering, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and
most of the data to be analyzed are gathered and captured from there. The overall
progress of the system is laid out in the Gantt chart form in appendix A. The chart also

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listed the validation process which will be validated based on the success rate of fault
detection, which will be done by the experts at the School of Mechanical Engineering,
Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM).

9. References
[1] R. Nejatpour, A.A. Sadabad, Automated Weld Defects Detection Using Image
Processing and CAD Methods, ASME International Mechanical Engineering
Congress and Exposition, Oct 8, 2008
[2] Anju Bala, An Improved Watershed Image Segmentation Technique using
MATLAB, International Journal of Scientific & Engineering Research Volume 3,
Issue 6, June-2012
[3] Jiannan Shen, Application of Image Segmentation In Inspection Of Welding
Practical research in MATLAB, University Of Boras, 2012
[4] Paul R. Hill, C. Nishan Canagarah, and David R.Bull, Image Segmentation Using
a Texture Gradient Based Watershed Transform, IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON
IMAGE PROCESSING, VOL. 12, NO. 12, DECEMBER 2003
[5] K. Parvati, B. S. Prakasa Rao, and M. Mariya Das, Image Segmentation Using
Gray-Scale Morphology and Marker-Controlled Watershed Transformation, Discrete
Dynamics in Nature and Society, Volume 2008, Article ID 384346, 8 pages
[6] Krishna kant Singh, Akansha Singh, A Study Of Image Segmentation Algorithms
For Different Types Of Images, IJCSI International Journal of Computer Science
Issues, Vol. 7, Issue 5, September 2010
[7] D. Narsimhachary, Effect of Laser Welding Parameters on 6061 Aluminium
Alloy, Department Of metallurgical And Materials Engineering, National Institute Of
Technology Rourkela, Odisha-769008. 2014

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[8] Remi Cogranne, (2014) Statistical detection of defects in radiographic images


using an adaptive parametric model, Signal Processing, Volume 96, Part B, Pages
173189
[9] Saba Madani, Mortaza Azizi "Detection of Weld Defects in Radiography Films
Using Image Processing". 2015
[10] MathWorks. 2015. Image Segmentation. [Online]. [Accessed 2 Oct 2015].
From: http://www.mathworks.com/discovery/image-segmentation.html
[11] WELDERS Visual Inspection, HANDBOOK, May 2013, pp. 32-33.
[12] Li, C.-T, and Chiao, R. (2003) Multiresolution Genetic Clustering Algorithm for
Texture Segmentation, Image and Vision Computing, 21 (11), pp. 955-966.

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10. Appendix A

Figure A: Project timeline (Gantt Chart)

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