Rapid inspection using integrated ultrasonic arrays

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8 Citations (Scopus)


Welds in high-quality products are subjected to extensive ultrasonic inspection during manufacture and in-service. The time and efficiency of the scan is important for both financial and quality assurance considerations. This has led to a BRITE-EuRAM programme, to develop methods for performing rapid quality weld inspection with a target reduction of 75% in inspection time. To achieve this, a large (128 mm) cost-effective self-contained ultrasonic array system was developed which allows rapid inspection, when compared to a single-probe system, and real-time images to aid in the detection and identification of flaws The scanning and control electronics were integrated with a piezo-polymer array for wide bandwidth and to optimise signal-to-noise ratio, cost and flexibility. The self-contained head allows it to be used with a wide range of conventional equipment, for increased speed of coverage, as well as for imaging. Examples of A-scans and images obtained using the array on practical samples are presented. The standard design has an operational acoustic frequency band of 2 to 5 MHz which covers the frequencies required for weld inspection but this can be raised (for improved resolution or for thickness gauging) or lowered (for attenuating materials) as required.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)573-577
Number of pages5
JournalInsight: Non-Destructive Testing and Condition Monitoring
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1998


  • cost effectiveness
  • inspection
  • nondestructive examination


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