Uncovering Subsurface Defects
X-ray inspection of materials and products, also called industrial radiography, is a very effective method of uncovering subsurface defects. Laboratory Testing Inc. in the Philadelphia, PA (USA) area offers both film and digital radiography to meet specification requirements and customer preferences.
X-Ray Inspection to Meet Requirements
Radiography is nondestructive and does not harm the test piece. The X-ray inspection processes and imaging equipment used for the digital and film methods are the same, yet their output differs and each has advantages:
- Digital Radiography / Computed Radiography (CR)
- With digital radiography, inspectors have the ability to adjust contrast and zoom into areas of greater interest. The digital images can be saved to a disc, emailed to customers and easily archived.
- Film Radiography / Conventional Radiography (XR)
- Conventional radiography utilizes extremely fine grain film which is able to produce a high-contrast image that is viewed on a film reader.
Qualifications and Capabilities
- Both types of industrial radiography are performed on solid materials.
- Certified NDT Level 2 and Level 3 technicians evaluate the digital and film images according to the required test specifications.
- Industrial radiography is performed to MIL and ASTM specifications.
- Equipment to handle extremely large and small test pieces.
Most X ray inspection performed at Laboratory Testing takes place in our 20 ft. x 20 ft. radiography vault with imaging equipment that can penetrate solid materials of varying thicknesses, including steel to 4 1/2 inches. This arrangement, along with our high-capacity forklifts and 3-ton crane, allows for the examination of large products and materials. Our capabilities also include X-ray inspection of small products such as electronic assemblies using a special X-ray camera in a small cabinet unit.
- ASTM E94
- ASTM E1030
- ASTM E1742
Industrial Radiography Applications
The need for industrial radiography can occur during product R&D, as part of the manufacturing, fabrication or installation processes or when a product is in service. Digital radiography and conventional radiography both provide information to determine the soundness of a material or product and are valuable inspection method for a variety of purposes:
- Detect internal discontinuities such as shrinkage, cracking and porosity
- Verify the integrity of internal components
- Determine the quality of welds
- Identify the extent of corrosion
- Uncover the source in fire investigations
The X-ray Inspection Process
The X-ray inspection process used to examine industrial products is very similar to the more familiar radiography used in the medical industry. Industrial radiography uses X-rays to penetrate test items made of solid materials (e.g. tubing, castings, weld plates, plastic injection molding, circuit boards, batteries) so hidden defects, inconsistencies or features can be revealed. An image of the inspected location is produced on film or as a digital image for evaluation by certified NDT inspectors and to create a permanent record of the internal condition of the test piece.
LTI Radiography Capabilities
- Processes – computed radiography (digital radiography) and conventional radiography (film radiography)
- Products Tested – solid materials
- Size Limitations – very small (e.g. electronics) to large (e.g. tubing, weld plates)
- Output – digital images, film
- Material Thickness – X-ray equipment can penetrate up to 4 1/2 inches of steel