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Level III
Study Guide
Ultrasonic Method
Matthew J. Golis

The American Society for Nondestructive Testing, Inc.

Level III
Study Guide
Matthew J. Golis

The American Society for Nondestructive Testing, Inc.

The Ultrasonic Testillg Level III Study Guide. prepared by Dr. Matlhew J. Goli~. is partially based on
earlier efforts by Robert Baker and Joseph Bush.

Publication and review of this Study Guide was under the direction of the Level III Program
Committee (known as the National Certification Board).

Published by
The American Society for Nondestructive Testing. 1nc.
171 1 Arlingate Lane
Colum bus, OH 4322 8-05 18
(800) 222-2768

© 1992 by The American Society for Nondestructive Testing, Inc. ASNT is nOl responsible for the
authenticity or accuracy of infonnation herein. Published opinions and statements do not necessarily
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IRRSP, The NDT Techlliciall and www.asnLorg are trademarks of The American Society for
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AS NT exists to create a safer world by promoting the profession and technologies of nondestructive

ISBN- 13: 978-0-931403-29-3

ISBN- IO: 0-931403-29-4

Printed in the United States of America.

first printing 02/92

second printing with revisions 04100
third printing with revisions 09/01
fourth printing with revisions 08/06
fifth printing with changes 06/08
This slUdy guide has been developed to assist persons preparing to take the Ultrasonic Level III
examination offered through ASNT. It is intended to fea ture the major concept s considered central to
the traditional uses of Ultrasonics NDT as it is practiced throughout the USA, and to present
abstracts of several of the Iypical tech nical speciali ties. codes, and standards from whic h
"appli cations" quest ions are sometimes derived. It is not intended lO be a comprehensive coverage of
all possible technical issues that may appear on the Level III test, but rather it is intended to reflec t
the breadth of the possible technology topics wh ich comprise potential questions material. It is vital
that the suppl emental references be carefully reviewed to amplify on the statements in the Guide in
order to place each technical topic into its proper contex l.

The problcms at the end of each sectio n are int ended to be used as feed back regarding the user's
understanding of the concepts discussed in the sections. They require both a general understanding
of many of the topics as well as an abi lity to solve complex interpretation and analysis issues. Mixed
systems of units are used (both Eng lish and metric) because both are found in contemporary codes
and specifications. They sometimes ca ll for interpretat ions of graphs. plots, and related fi gures.
which are an integral pan of the language of the engineering sciences and techno log ies.

Suggestions for improvement to the Guide, its questions, or the related codes and spec ifi cations
should be sent to Ed uca ti onal Materials Supervisor. ASNT, 1711 Arlingate Lane, PO Box 28518,
Columbus. OH 43228-0518. The author acknow ledges the suppo rt given to this project by the
technical reviewers, publications staff at ASNT, and particu larly the Technical Services Department .
who recogni zed the need fo r this document and made the necessary arrangemen ts for gettin g it
comp leted.

Chapter I - Physical Principles
3 Wave Characteristics
4 Reflection
5 Refraction
5 Mode Conversion
6 Critical Angles
7 Diffraction
7 Resonance
8 Attenu ation
II Chapter I Review Questions

Chapter 2 - Equipment
17 Basic Instrumentation
20 Transducers and Coup ling
26 Spec ial Equipment Features
29 Chapter 2 Review Questions

Chapter 3 - Common Practices

35 Approaches to Testing
39 Measuring System Performance
40 Reference Reflectors
41 Calibration
49 Chapter 3 Rev iew Questions

Chapter 4 - Practical Considerations

55 Signal Interpretation
56 Causes of Variability
58 Special Issues
58 Weld Inspection
60 Immersion Testing
63 Production Testing
64 rn~ service Inspection
65 Chapter 4 Re view Questions

Chapter 5 - Codes and Standards

7] Typical Approaches
72 Summaries of Requirements
76 Excerpts Taken from ASTM A609
78 Excerpts Taken from ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code
81 Military Standards
82 Excerpts Taken from MIL-STD-2154
83 Building Codes
84 Excerpts Taken from a Representative Building Code
87 Chapter 5 Review Questions

Chapter 6 - Special Topics
93 Resonance Testing
93 Flaw Si zin g Techniques

99 Appendix A - A Representati ve Procedure for Ultrasoni c Weld In spection

103 Fonn A. Ultrasonic Testing Technique Sheet
104 Form B. Ultrasonic Inspection Results Form
105 Review Questions for a Representati ve Procedure for Ultrasonic
Weld In spection

109 Appendix B - Li st of Material s, Ve loc ities, and Impedances

111 Appendix C - Answer Key to Chapter Review Questions

113 Appendix D - References

Chapter 1
Physical Principles
Chapter 1
Physical Principles
Sound is the propagation of mechanical severely attenuated and propagati on is lim ited to
energy (vibrations) through solids, liquids and Sh0l1 trave l di sta nces. The comillo n wave modes
gases. The ease w ith whi ch the sound travels, and their characteri stics are summari zed in
however, is depe nde nt upon the detailed nature Table 1.1.
of the material and the pilch (freque ncy) of the
sound. At ultrasoni c freque ncies (above
20.000 Hertz [H z]) , sound propagates we ll
through most e lastic or ncar-el astic so lid s and
Wave Characteristics
liq uids, partic ularl y those wi th low viscos iti es. The propagat ion o f ultrasonic waves depends
At freq uencies above 100 kil ohertz (kH z), sound on the mechani cal characteri stics of densi ty and
energy can be fo rmed into beams, s imi lar to that elasti city, the degree to which the material
of ligh t, and thus can be scanned throughout a support ing the waves is hOlllogeneous and
mate rial, 1I0t unl ike that of a flas hl ight used in a isotropic, and the d iffracti on pheno mena found
darkened room. Such sound beams follow many wi th continuous (or quas i-continuous) waves.
of the physical rules of optics and thus can be
reflected , refracted, di ffracted and absorbed Contin uous waves are described by thei r
(when nonel aslic materials are in volved). At wavelength . i.e., the di stance the wave advances
ex tremely high freque ncies (above in each repeated cycle. T-h.i.£...wave length is
100 mcgahcrll. rMH zl), the sound waves are proportional to the veloc ity at which the wave is

Table 1.1. Common Wave Mode Characteristics

Mode Notable Characti'risti cs Velochy Aite-rnate Names

l.ongitudinHI Bulk wave in all media Pressure Wave

In·line motion Dilatational (Straight Be-am)

Trun~wrsc Bulk wa\e in solids Shenr

Polarized. e,g. Sv. SH Torsional (Angle Beam)
Transverse motion

Surface (GUided) Boundary wave in solids Rayleigh Wa\e

Polarized vertically
Elliptical motion
Polarized horizontally

PI;Jte (Guided) Twin-boundary wave· solids F(f.T.m) Lamb Wave

Hourglass motion
Flexing motion
( ... ) Common colloquial tenns
Signifies approximate relationship for common Illllterials
F(f. T. rn) Depends on Frequency. Thic kness. lind Material

advanc ing and is inversely proportional to its Tabl e 1.2 it is seen that. in steel. a longitudinal
frequency of oscillation. Wavelength may be wave travels at 5.9 km/ s. while a shear wave
thought of as the distance from one point to the travels at 3.2 km/s. In aluminu m. the longitudinal
nex t identical point along the repetitive wave velocity is 6.3 km/s while the shear ve locit y
waveform. Wavelength is described is 3. 1 kmls. The wavelengths of sound for each of
mathematically by Equation I- I. these material s are calculated using Equation I- I
for each applicable test frequenc y used. For
Wavelength = Ve loci ty exampl e, a 5 MHz L-wave in water has a
Frequency wave length equal to 1483/5( I 0)6 m or 0.298 mill .
(Eq. I-I )
When sound waves are confined within
The velocity at which bulk waves travel is boundaries, such as alo ng a free surface or
determined by the material' s elastic moduli and between the surfaces of sheet material s, the
density. The expressions for longitudinal and waves take on a very different behavior, being
tra nsverse waves are g iven in Equations 1-2 and controlled by rhe confining boundary condition s.
1-3. respectively. These types of waves arc cull ed gu ided waves,
i. e., they are gu ided along the respec tive surfaces,
and exhibit veloc ities that are dependent upon
p(1+ ~ )(1- 2~ ) elastic moduli , density, thickness, s urface
conditions, and relative wavelength interac tio ns
(Eq . 1-2) with the surfaces. For Rayleigh waves, the useful
depth of penetration is restricted to about one
wave length below the surface. The wave motion
is that of a retrograde ellipse. Wave modes such
as those found w ith Lamb waves have a ve locity
(Eq. 1-3) o f propagation depende nt upon the operating
where frequency, sample thickness and clasti c moduli .
They are di spersive (ve loci ty changes with
VL is the longitudinal bu lk wave velocity, frequency) in that pulses transmitted in these
VT is the transvcrse (shear) wave velocity, modes tend to become stretched or dispersed as
G is the shear modulu s, they propagate in these modes and/or material s
E is Young's modulus of e lastici ty whi ch ex hibit frequen cy-depe ndent velocities.
~ is the Poi sson ratio, and
p is the material densi ty . Reflection
Typical values of bulk wave velocities in Ultrasonic waves, when they encounter a
common malerials are given in Table 1.2. A di screte change in materials, as at the boundary of
more complete list is given in Appendix A. From two dissimi lar materials, are usual ly partially
reflected. If the incident waves are perpend icular
Table 1.2. Acoustic Velocities, Densities and 10 the material interface, the refl ected waves are
Acoustic Impedances of Common redirected back toward the source from which
Materials they came. The degree to which the sound energy
is reflected is dependent upon the difference in
Muterilll V ( m /s) V (m/s) Z [JIil!./c m J ) acoust ic properties, i.e., acoustic impedances,
between the adjacent materi als.
Steel 5900 3230 45.0 7.63
Acoustic impedance (Eq uat ion 1-4) is the
Aluminum 6320 3130 17.0 2.70
product of a wave's veloci ty of propagation and
Plexiglass 2730 t430 3.2 1.17 the density of the material through which the
wave IS passlOg.
Water 1483 - 1.5 1.00
Z= P X V
Quartz 5800 2200 15.2 2.62 (Eq. 1-4)

where transmitted wave may be ( I) refracted (bent),
Z is the acou stic impedance, depending on the relative acou stic velocities of
p is the density, and the respective media, and/or (2) partially
V is the applicable wave velocity. con verted to a mode of propagation different
from that of the incident wave. Figure 1.1 a
shows normal reflection and partial transmission ,
Table 1.2 lists the acoustic impedances of while Figure 1.1 b shows oblique reflection and
several common materials. the partition of waves into reflected and
transmitted wave modes.
The degree to which a perpendicular wave is
reflected from an acoustic interface is gi ven by Referring to Figure 1.1 b, Snell's Law may be
the energy rcflcction cocfficient. The ratio of thc stated as:
reflected acoustic energy to that which is
incident upon the interface is given by
Equation 1-5.
. " (V,)sma
sm..., = .~

(Eq. 1-6)

For example. at a water-plexiglass interface,

(Eq. 1-5) the refracted shear wave angle is related to the
where incident angle by
R is the Coefficient of Energy Reflection
for normal incidence sin ~ ~ (I43011483)sin IX ~ (O.964)sin a.
Z is the respective material acoustic
impedances with
For an incident an gle of 30 degrees ,
ZI = incident wave material ,
Z~ = transmitted wave material , and
sin ~ ~ 0.964 x 0.5 and ~ ~ 28.8 degrees
T is- Lhe Coefficient of Energy
Note: T+R = l
Mode Conversion
It should be noted that the acoustic velocities
In the case of water-to-steeJ, approximately (VI and V2) used in Equation 1-6 must conform
88 percent of the incident longitudinal wave to the modes of wave propagation which exist
energy is reflected back into the water, leaving for each given case. For example, a wave in
12 percent to be transmitted into the stee!. ! These water (which supports only longitudinal waves)
percentages are arrived at using Equation 1-5 incident on a steel plate at an angle other than
with Z ,\ ~ 45 and Z '" ~ 1.5. Thus, R ~(45 - 1.5)'1 90 degrees can generate longitudinal, shear, as
(45 + 1.5)' ~ (43.5/46.5)' ~ 0.875 , or 88 percent well as heavily damped surface or other wave
and T ~ I - R ~ I - 0.88 ~ 0.12, or 12 percent. modes, depending on the incident angle and test
part geometry. The wave may be totally reflected
Refraction if the incident angle is sufficiently large. In any
case, the waves generated in the steel will be
Whcn a sound wave cncounters an interface refracted in accordance with Snell' s Law,
at an angle other than perpendicular (oblique whether they are longitudinal or shear waves.
incidence), reflections occur at angles equal to
thc incidcnt angle (as measured from the normal Figure 1.2 shows the distribution of
or perpendicular axis). If the sound energy is transmitted wave energies as a function of
partially transmitted beyond the interface, the incident angle for a water-aluminum interface.
For example, an L-wave with an incidence angle
of 8 degrees in water results in (1) a transmitted
'When Equation 1-5 is e~ pressed for pressure waves rather than
the energy contained in the waves. the te rms in parentheses are shear wave in the aluminum with 5 percenl of
not squared. the incident beam energy, (2) a transmitted

Figure 1.1. Incident, reflected, transmitted, and refracted waves at a
liquid-solid interface
-- b.

z, v,
Norma l

L-wave with 25 percent and (3) a renected materials), the incident angle. and the
L-wavc with 70 percent of the incident beam tran smitted wave mode(s) refracted angJe(s).
energy. It is evident from the figu re that fo r low
incidence ang les (less than the first cri tical ang le Critical Angles
of 14 degrees), more than one mode may be
generated in the alum inum. Note that the sum of The critical angle for the interface of two
the reflected longitudinal wave energy and the medi a with dissimil ar acollstic wave velocities is
transm itted ene rgy or energies is equal to unity the incident angie at which the re fracted angle
at all angles. The relati ve energy amplitudes equals 90 degrees (in accordance wi th Snell 's
partitioned into the different modes are law) and can only occur if the wave mode
dependent upon several variab les. including each vel oci ty in the second medium is greater than the
material' s acoustic impedance. each wave mode wave ve locity in the inc idcnt medi um. It may
veloc ity (in both the inciden t and refracted also be defined as the incidcnt angle beyond
which a specific mode can not occur in the
second medium. in the case of a water-to-steel
interface. there are two critical angles derived
from Sne ll' s law. The fi rst occurs at an incident
Figure 1.2. Reflection and transmission
angle of 14.5 degrees for the longi tudinal wave.
coefficients versus incident
The second occ urs at 27.5 deg rees for the shear
angle for water/aluminum
wave. Equation 1-7 can be used to calculate the

critical incident angle for any material
c combinati on.
'0 •.•
8 0.8
f..- .. .... ........ \
~ ~~ Transmuted ...... .
- LongilUdinal .- .....
\.z.. M Wave I _ _ _ Transmitted (Eq. 1·7)
~, 0.3 , Shear Wave For example. the fin.t critical ang le for a
1i:i 0.2 --....' I water-alum inum interface is calculated using the
::i "'0l-..= -'c..::L"'.:u~!:--!:-~\---f;--!;-
criti cal angle equation a<.,
Incidence Angle (degrees) a Cril = sin- I (J.f83 / 63::!0) = 13.6 degrees
sin$ = 1.2!:
Plane waves advanci ng through D
homogeneous and isotropic e lastic media tend to
travel in straight ray paths unless a change in (Eq. 1-8)
med ia properties is encountered. A flat (much
w ider th an the incident beam) interface of N= -
differing acoustic properties redirects the 4A
incident plane wave in the form of a specu\arly (Eq. 1-9)
(mirrorlike) refl ected or refracted plane wave as where
discussed above. The assumption in th is case is $ is the beam divergence half angle,
that the interface is large in comparison to the A is the wavelength in the media,
incident beam's d imensions and thus docs not D is the diameter of the aperture
encou nter any "edges." (transducer),
N is the length of the Near F ield (Fresnel
On the ot her hand, when a wave encounte rs a Zone).
po in t renec lor (small in comparison to a
wave length), the reflected wave is reradiated as a Note: The mu ltipl ier of 1.2 in Equation [·8 is
spherical wave front. Th us, when a plane wave fo r the theoret ical null. 1.08 is used for 20 dB
encou nte rs the edges of reflective interfaces. down poi nt (10 percent of peak), 0.88 is used for
such as ncat" thc tip of a fat igue crack, specular 10 dB down po int (32 percent of peak) and 0.7
reflections occur along the "flat" surfaces of the for 6 dB down po int (50 percent of peak).
crack and cy li ndrical wave lets are launched from
the edges. S ince the waves are coheren t, i.e., the For example, a 20 mm diameter, L-wave
same frequency (wavelength) and in phase, the ir transducer, radiating into steel and operating at a
red irecti on into the path of subsequent advancing frequency of 2 MHz. will have a near field gi ven
p lane waves results in incident and reflected by
(scattered) waves interfe ri ng, i.e., forming
regions of reinforcement (constructive [20{lOr x 2(10)'] 200 3
in te rference) and cancellat ion (destructive N= 3 = - (lOr = 33.9 nun
4xS.9{lO) S.9

T hi s "in terfering" behavior is characteristic and half-beam spread angle given by

of contin uous waves (or pulses from "ringing"
ultrasonic transducers) and, when applied to . - ,{ 1.2xS.9(1O)3
$ = Sill 3
} 02d egrees
6 = 1.
edges and aperrures serving as sources of sound 20(10) x 2(10)
beams, is known as wave diffrac tion. It is the
fu ndamen tal bas is for concepts such as
If the J 0 percent peak value was desired
transducer beam spread (direct ivity). near field,
rather than the theoret ical null, the 1.2 would be
wavelength-limited flaw detection sensitivity,
changed to 1.08 and 4> would equal 9.2 degrees.
and assists in the sizing of discontinui ties using
Using the multiplier of 0.7 for the 6 dB down
dual transducer (crack-tip diffraction)
value, the half angle becomes 6 degrees.
techniq ues. Figure 1.3 shows examples of plane
waves bei ng changed into spherical or
cylindrical waves as a result of diffraction from Resonance
poin t reflectors, linear edges and (transducer- Another form of wave interference occurs
like) apertures . when normally incident (at normal incidence)
and reflected plane waves interact (usually
Beam spread and the length of the near field within narrow, parall el in terfaces). The
for round sound sources may be calculated using am plitudes of the superimposed acoustic waw s
Equations 1-8 and 1-9. are additive when the phase of the doubly
reflected wave matches that of the incoming

Figure 1.3. Examples of diffraction due to the presence of edges

;f;(~ *:.~
a. Point Refl ector b. Edge Reflector

c. Square Aperture d. Round Aperture

incident wave and creates "stand ing" (as materials (that are generall y homogeneous but
opposed to trave ling) acoustic waves. When contain even ly distribu ted scutterers, e.g., gas
standi ng waves occur, th e item is said to be in pores, segregated inclu sions, and grain
resonance, i.e., resonating. Reso nance occu rs boundaries), the waves are parti ally re nected at
when the th ickness of the item equals half a each disconti nuity and the energy is said to be
wavelength 2 or its multiples, i.e., when T = V12 F. scattered into many different directions. Thus,
Th is phenomenon occurs when piezoe lectric the acoustic wave that starts out as a coherent
transducers are el ectrically excilCd at their pl ane wave fro nt becomes parti all y redirected as
characte ri st ic (fund amental resonant) frequency. it passes through the materi al.
It also occu rs when longitudin al waves travel
through thi n sheet materials during im mers ion The relati ve impact of the presence of
testing. scatte ring sources depends upon the ir size in
co mparison to the wavelength of the ultrason ic
Attenuation wave. Scatterers much smaller than a
wavelength are of little consequence. As the
Sound waves dec rease in intensity as they scatterer size approaches that of a wavelength,
travel away from their source, due to geometrical scattering within the material becomes
spreading, scatterin g, and absorption. In increasingly troublesome. The effects on such
fin e-grained, homogeneous, and isotropi c elastic signal attenuat ion can be partially compe nsated
materials, the strength of the sound fie ld is by using longer wavele ngth (lower frequency)
affec ted mainly by the nature of the radiat ing sound sources, usuall y at the cost of decreased
source and its attendant direct ivi ty pauern . Ti ght sensi ti vity to discon tinu ities and resolution.
patterns (s mall beam angles) travel farther than
widely diverging pattern s. Some scatters, such as colu mnar grai ns in
stainl ess steels and lami nated composites,
When ult rasonic waves pass through ex hi bit hi ghly anisotropic elastic behavior. In
common polycrystall ine elastic engineeri ng these cases, the incident wave front becomes
distorted and often appears to change direct ion
' If a layer between two differing media has an acoustic imped· (propagate better in certain preferred directi ons)
ance equal to the geometric mean of the outer two and its in response to the maleriar s anisotropy. This
thickness is equal to one-quartcr wavelength. 100 percent of the
incident acoustic energy. at normal incidence. will be transmitted behav ior of some materia ls can totally destroy
through the dual interfaces beeause the interfering waves in the the usefulness of the UT approach to materials
layer combine to serve as an acoustic impedance transformer.

Sound waves in some materials are absorbed Table 1.3 shows some typical va lues of
by the processes of mechanical hysteresis, allenualion for common NDT applications. Be
internal friction, or other energy loss aware that attenuation is highly dependent upon
mechanisms. These processes occur in nonelastic operating frequency and thus any stated values
materials such as plastics, rubber, lead, and must be used with caution.
nonrigid coupling materials. As the mechanical
wave attempts to propagate through such Because many factors affect the signal s
materials, parI of its energy is given up in the returned in pulse.echo testing. direct
fo rm of heat and is not recoverable. Absorption measurement of material attenuation can be quite
is usually the reason that testing of soft and difficult. Detected signals depend heavily upon
pliable material s is limited to relatively thin operating frequency, boundary conditions, and
section s. waveform geometry (plane or other). as well as
the precise nature of the materials being
Attenuation is measured in terms of the evaluated. Materials are highly variable due to
energy loss ratio per unit length, e.g .. decibels their thermal history, balance of alloying or other
per in. or decibel s per meter. Values range from integral constituents (aggregate. fibers, matrix
less than 10 dB/m for aluminum to over uniformity, water/void content, to name a few ).
100 dB/m or more for some castings, plastics, as well as mechanical processing (forging.
and concrete. rolling, extruding, and the preferential directional
nature of these processes).

Table 1.3. Attenuation Values for Common Materials

Nature of Material Attenuation* Principal

(dB/m) Cause

Normalized Steel 70 Scatter

Aluminum , 90 Scatter

Stainless Steel, 110 ScatterlRedirection


Plastic (clear acrylic) 380 Absorption

*Frequency of2.25 MHz, Longitudinal wave mode

Chapter 1 Review Questions
Q.l· J Sound waves continue to lf3vel: Q. I-6 The equations that show VL and VT be ing
dependent on e lastic propert ies suggest
A. until they are reflected by material that:
su rfaces.
B. gradually di ss ipating by the effects of A. materi als with higher densities will
beam spread. usuall y have higher acoustic
C. gradually diss ipating by scattering velocities.
and absorption. B. materials w ith hi gher moduli will
D. all of the above. usuall y have higher velocit ies.
C. wave veloc ities rely most ly upon the
Q. J -2 Wavelength may be defined as: ratios of e lastic modu li to materi al
dens ity.
A. frequency divided by velocit y. D. VT wi ll always be one-half of VL in
B. the di stance along a wave train frolll the same material.
peak to trough.
C. the di stance from one point to the Q. I-7 Veloc ity measurements in a material
next identica l point along a revealed that the veloc ity decreased as
wavetrain. frequency increased. This material is
D. the di stance along a wavclrain from called:
an area of high particle motion to one
of low particle motion. A dissipated.
B. discontinuous.
Q. I-3 To determine wavelength : C. dispersive.
D. degenerat ive.
A. multi ply ve locity by frequency.
B. divide velocity by frequency. Q . l -S Plate thickness = 25.4 mm, pulse-echo,
C. divide frequency by velocity. straight beam measured elapsed time =
D. nOlle of the above. 8 ~ s. What is the most likely material?

Q. I-4 The wavelength of a 5 MHz sound wave A. carbon steel

in water is: (VL = 1.4S( IO)Scmls) B. lead
C. titanium
A. 0.01 in. D. alumi num
B. 0.10 in.
C. 0.296 m. Q.I-9 It can be deduced from Table 1.2 that the
D. 3.00mm. densities of:

Q. I-5 Th ickness resonance occurs when A water and plexiglass are in the ratio
tran sduce rs and test paris are excited at a of 1.16: 1.
frequency equal to: B. steel and aluminum are in the ratio of
(where V = sound veloci ty and 2.8: I.
T = item th ickness) C. quartz and al uminum are in the rati o
of 1.05: I.
A. 2TIV. D. all of the above.
B. T/2V.
C. VI2T. Q.l-IO The acoustic energy refl ected at a
D. 2v/T. plexiglass-quartz interface is equal to:

A. 64 percent.
B. 41 percent.
C. 22 percent.
D. 52 percent.
Q.I-II The acoustic energy transmitted through Q.I-16 From Figure 1.2 it is evi dent that the sum
a plexiglass-water interface is equal to: of the inc ident wave's part itions
(transmitted and reflec ted) is:
A. 87 percenl.
S. 36 percent A. highly irregular at low angles, but
C. 13 percent constant above 30 degrees.
D. 64 percent B. lower at angles between 16 and 26
Q.I- 12 The first critical angle at a water- C. rarel y more than 0.8.
plexiglass interface will be: D. al ways equal to unity.

A. 16 degrees . Q.I-17 The principal attenuation modes are:

B. 33 degrees.
C. 22 degrees. A. absorpt ion, scatter, beam spread.
D. none of the above. B. beam spread, collimation, scauer.
C. scalier, absorption, foclising.
Q.I- 13 The second critical angle at a water- D. scatter, beam spread, adhesion.
pl ex iglass interface will be:
Q.I-18 Attenuation caused by scatterin g:
A. 22 degrees.
B. 33 degrees. A. increases with increased frequency
C. 67 degrees. and grain size.
D. none of the above. B. decreases with increased frequency
and grain size.
Q.1-14 The inc ident angle needed in immersion C. increases with higher frequency and
testing to deve lop a 70-degree shear decreases with larger grain size.
wave in pl exiglass usi ng the information D. decreases with hi gher frequency and
in Table 1.2 equal s: decreases with larger grain size.

A. 83 degrees. Q.I-19In very fine-grain, isotropic crystalline

B. 77 degrees. material, the principal loss mechanism at
C. 74 degrees. 2 MH z is:
D. 65 degrees.
A. scatter.
Q.I-15 Figure 1.2 shows the partition of incident B. mechanical hysteres is.
and tran smitted waves at a C. beam spread.
water-aluminum interface. At an D. absorption.
incidence angle of 20 degrees, the
renected wave and tran smitted waves are Q.I-20 T wo plates yield different backwall
respective ly: renections in pulse-echo testing ( 18 dB)
with their on ly apparent difference being
A. 60 percent and 40 percent. in the second materi al's void content
B. 40 percent and 60 percent. The plates arc both 3 in . thick. What is
C. 113 and 2/3. the effect ive change in acoustic
D. 80 percent and 20 percent attenuation between the first and second
plate based on actual metal path
di stance?

A. 3 dB/in.
B. 6 dB/in.
C. 18 dBlin.
D. none of the above

Q.I-21 The equation, sin $::: 0.7 IJD, describes:

A . beam spread ang le at 50 percent

decrease in signal from the centerline
B. one-half the beam spread angle at
50 percent decrease in signal from the
centerl ine value.
C. one-half the beam spread angle at
20 percent decrease in signal from the
centerli ne value.
D. one-half the beam spread angle at
100 percent decrease in signal from
the centerline value.

Q. I-22 The beam spread half-angle in the far

field of a I in. diameter transducer
sending 5 MHz long itudinal waves into a
pJexiglass block is:

A. 0.5 degrees.
B. 1.5 degrees.
C. 3. 1 degrees.
D. 6.2 degrees.

Q. I-23 The near field of a round 1/2 in. diameter

contact L-wave transducer being used on
a steel test part operating at 3 MHzis:
A. 0.5 in.
B. I in.
c. I em.
D. 2cm.
Q. I-24 The depth of penetration of the sound
beam into a material can be increased by:

A. using a higher frequency.

B. using a longer wavelength.
C. usi ng a smaller transducer.
D. usi ng a lower frequency and a larger

Chapter 2
Chapter 2
Basic Instrumentation generator (that forces the electron beam within
the cathode ray tube to move hori zontall y across
The basic electronic in strument used in the screen), and other special circuits as needed
pu lsed ul trasoni c test ing contai ns a source o f including markers, sweep de lays, gates.
voltage spikes (to acti vate the sound source, i.e., electroni c di stance ampli tude correction (DAC)
the pulser) and a di spl ay mechanism that permits unit s, and other support c ircuit s.
interpretation of rece ived ultrasonic acoustic
impul ses, i. e., the sweep ge nerato r, receiver and Pul se signals fro m the rece iver search unit 3
display scanner or cathode ray tube (CRT). A are ampl ifi ed to a leve l compat ible with the CRT
block di agram of the bas ic uni t is shown in
Figure 2. 1.
'The tern} pulse is used in twO contexts in ullrJsonic NDT
Seve ral operati ons are synchroni zed by the systems. The electronic system sends an exciting electri cal
clock (timer) circuitry whic h triggers appropriate "pulse"to the transducer being used to emil the ultras.onic wave.
This electrical pulse is usually a unidirectional spikc with a fast
components to initiate actio ns including the rise-t ime. The resulting acoustic "wave packet" emilled by lhe
pui ser (that activates the transducer), the sweep transducer is the ultrasonic pulse. characterized by a prcdominant
central frequency at the transducer's naturallhickne~s resonance.

Figure 2.1. Block diagram of basic pulse-echo ultrasonic instrument.

Generator /


Y • ~A

t- '--'

It Lt
Table 2.1. Instrumentation Controls Effects

InSlru ment Control Comments on Signal Respon se

Pulse Length (Damping) If shon , improves depth resolution;
I f long. improves penetration

Repetition Rate If high. brightens images-but may cause wra p·around "ghost" signals

Frequcncy Response Wide Band- faithful reproduction of signal. higher background noise
Narrow Band- higher sensitivity. smoothed signals. rcquires ma tched (tuned) syste m

If high. improves sensitivity. higher background noise

Material Adjust Calibration critical fo r depth information
Delay I)ermits "spreading"of echo pulses for detailed analysis

Rcjcct Suppresses low-level noise. alters opponent vcnical linearity

Smoothing Suppresses detailed pulse structure

Output (Al;mll, Record)

Time Window Selects portion of display for analysis, gate may diston pulses
(Delay, Width)

Threshold Sets automatic output sensiti\'ity

I'ol arity Pcnnits positi ve and negative images, allows triggering on both increasing and
dec reasing pulses

and appear as ve rtical excursions of the e lectron of an ultrason ic test. If desired, a particu lar
beam sweeping across the screen in response to port ion of the trace may be Hgated" and the
the sweep generalOf. The rece ived signals are signal within the gate sent to some external
often processed 10 enhance interprelation device, i.e. , an alarm or recording device, which
through the lise of filte rs (that lim it spurious registers the presence or absence of echo signals
background noise and smooth the appearance of that are being sought.
the pul ses), rectifiers (that change the oscillatory
radio-frequency [RF] signals 10 unidirectional C haracteristics of the initi al pu lse (shape and
"video" spikes), and clipping circuits (that reject fre quency con tent) are carried forward
low- level background signals). The final signals th roughout the syste m, to the transducer, the test
are passed on to the ve rti cal denection plates of item, back to the transducer, the receiver, the
the CRT or display unit and produce the gate, and the CRT. In essence, the information
time-delayed echo signals interpreted by the UT content of the in itial pul se is modified by each of
operator, commonl y referred to as an A Scan these items and it is the result of thi s collective
(signal ampli tude displayed as a fun ct ion of signal processing that appears on the screen.
The initi al pulse may range from several
All of these func tion s are within the control hundred to over 1000 V and have a very short
of the operator and their collec ti ve sett ings rise· time. In other syste ms, the in itial pulse may
represent the Hsetup" of the instnllnen l. Table 2. 1 represent a portion of a sinusoidal osc illati on
li sts the variables under the control of the that is tuned to correspond to the natural
operator and the impact they have on the validity frequ ency of the transducer. The sinu soidal

exc itation is often used where longer duration Signals may be di splayed as RF waveforms,
pulses are needed to penetrate highly attenuative representing a close replica of the acoustic wave
materials such as rubber and concrete. as it was detected by the receiv ing transducer, or
as video waveforms, (half- or fu ll-wave
Signals from the receiv ing transducer rectified), used to double the effectivc viewing
(usua ll y in the millivolt range) are too small to range of the screen (bottom to top rather than
be directly senilO the display unit. Both linear centerline to topfbottom), but suppressing the
and logari thmic amp liriers are used to raise phase information found only in RF
signal levels needed to drive the display. These presentation s.
amp lifie rs, located in the receiver sections of the
A Scan units, must be able to produce output To enhance the ability to accurately identify
signals that are linearly related to the input and assess the nature of the received ultrason ic
signals and which supply signal process ing pulses, particu larly when there exists an
intended to ass ist the operator in interpreting the excessive amount of background signals, various
disp layed signals. means of signal processing are used. Both tuned
receivers (narrow-band instruments) and low
Am pl ifiers may raise incoming signal s to a pass filters are used to se lect ively suppress
maximum level, fo ll owed by precision portions of the received spectrum of signal
attenuators that decrease the signal strength to frequencies which do not contain useful
usable levels, i.e. , or capab le of being positioned informat ion from the test material.
on the sc reen face, capable of chang ing
am plification ratios in direct response to the Linear system s, such as the ultrasonic
"Gain" con trol. in strument's receiver sect ion (as well as each of
the elements of the overall system), are
Di screte attcnuators (which have a characterized by the manner in which they affect
logarithm ic respon sc) arc currently used due 10 incoming signal s. A common approach is to slart
their ease of precise construction and simpfe with the frequency content of the incoming
means for altering signal levels which extend signa l (from the receiv ing transducer) and to
beyond the vicwing range of the sc reen. Their desc ribe how that spectrum of frequencies is
extensive use has made "decibel notation" a pan altered as a result of passing through the system
of the standard terminology used in describ ing element.
changes in signal levels, e.g., receiver gain and
material atten uation. When both useful target information (which
may be predominantl y contained in a narrow
Equation 2-1 (ratios to dec ibels) shows the band of frequencies generated by the sending
relationship between the ratio of two pul se transducer) and background noi sc (which may be
ampli tudes (A 2 and A I) and their equ ivalence distributed randomly over a broad spectrum of
expressed in decibel notat ion (NdIJ frequencies) are present in the signal emering the
receiver, selective passing of the frequencies of
interest emphasizes the signal s of interest while
suppressing the others which interfere with
(Eq.2-1 ) interpretation of the CRT display.

Inversion of thi s equation results in the When an ultrasonic instrument is desc ribed
usefu l expression as being broadband, that means a very wide
A/A I = 1(}"'1'.1O, array of frequencies can be processed through
the in strument with a minimum of alteration. i.e ..
where a change of20 dB , i.e., N = 20, makes the signal observed on the screen is a close, but
ION/2Q = 10 1 = 10 ampl ified, representation of the electrical signal
measured at the receiving transducer. Thu s both
Thus 20 dB is equivalent to a ratio of 10: I. useful signal s and background noise are present
and the signal-to-noise ratio (SIN) may not be

Figure 2.2. Comparison of time domain and frequency domain representations of typical
signals found in ultrasonic testing

time time

[Input] [Output]

Hand Ilass]
[ Response

Frequency Domain A Frt(IUcncy H.e.<;ponse


frequ ency

very good. The shape and amp litudes of the A probe or search unit may contain one or more
signa ls, however, tend to be an accurate transducers. plus facinglbacki ng materials and
representation of the recei ved response from the connectors in order to meet a specific UT design
tran sducer. need.

A narrow-banded instrument, on the other A critica l element of eac h searc h unit is the
hand , suppresses that portion of the frequen cy tran sducer's active material. Com monly used
content of the incoming signal that is ou tside materia ls ge nerate stress waves when they are
(above or below) the ··pass'· frequency band. subjected to elec trical stimuli , i.e., piezoelectrics.
With the high-frequency noi se suppressed, the These material s arc characteri zed by thei r
gain of the in strument can be increased, leading conversion factors (electrica l to/from
to an improved sensitivity. Howeve r, the shape mechanical), thermal/mechanica l stabili ty, and
and re lati ve amplitudes of pulse frequency other phys ical/chemical features. Table 2.2 li sts
co mponents are often altered. Fi gure 2.2 many of the material s used and some of their
graphi ca ll y shows these effects for a typica l salient fea ture s. The cri tica l temperature is the
ultrasonic signal. temperatu re above which the maleri al loses its
piezoe lectric characteri sti c. It may be the
depoling temperature of the ferroelcctrics, the
Transducers and Coupling deco mposition temperature fo r the lithium
sulfate or the Curie temperature for the quartz.
A transducer. as appli ed to ultrasonic test ing.
: ... the mean,"> by which elec trica l energy is
" med illlo acoust ic energy and back again.
n.:- j.e-... l ...·e. adapted for UT. has been called a "The 1erm 1rallsduccr i~ generic in lh:u il applies 10 any device
thnt converts one form of cnerg~ into another. e.g .. light bulbs .
. l. ~c h unit. a crystal. and a transducer. 4 electric he:uer\ and ~olar co llector,.

Table 2.2. Piezoelectric Material Characteristics

Material Efficiency Irnped- C ritical Displace- Electrical Density Note

ance Temp ment
T R TIR (Z) (0C) (dJl) (g.ll) pO

Quartz 15 .2 576 2.3 57 2.65 (1 )


PZT5 10 0.21 14.6 33 193-365 374-593 20-25 7.5 (2)

Lead Zirconate

BaTi 8.4 31.2 115-150 125-190 14-21 5.4 (2)

Barium Titanate

PMl'" 32 20.5 550 80-85 32-42 6.2 (2)

Lead Metaniobatc

LSI-I 6.9 - 2.0 11.2 75 15-16 156-175 2.06 (3)

Lithium Sulfate

LN 2.8 0.54 1.51 34 6 23 4.64

Lithium Niobatc

PVDF 6.9 1.35 9.3 4.1 165-180 14 140-210 1.76 (4)

Poly( vinylidcnc
(1) Mechanically and chemically stable; X-cut yields longitudinal wave motion while V-cut
yields distortional transverse waves.
(2) Ferroelectric ceramic requiring poling and s ubject to extensive cross-mode coupling.
(3) Soluble in water, R estimated at -2.
(4) Flexible polymer.

Figure 2.3. Quality factor or "Q" of a transducer

Time Domain Frequency Domain


a. 0.7

b. Amplitude


The qual ity factor, or "Q," of tuned ci rcu its, reg ions caused by interfering wavefront s
search un its or indiv idual transducer elements is emanating from a continuous, or near continuous,
a performance measu re of their freq uency sound source. Hu ygen's principle treats the
selecti vity. It is the ratio of the search unit 's transducer face as a seri es of poi nt sources of
fundamen tal (resonance) freque ncy (f) to its sound , whi ch interfere wi th each other's wavelets
bandwidth (f2 - f l) at the 3 dB down points throughout the near field. Each point source emits
(0.707) and shown in Figure 2.3. spherical wavefronts which start out in phase at
the transducer surface. At observation points
The rat io of the acoustic impedance of the somewhat removed from the plane wave source
transd ucer and its facing materials governs how (the transducer face), wavefronts from variou s
welllhe sound from the transducer can be point sources (separated laterall y from each
coupled into the material and/or the backing other) interfere as a resu lt of the differing
material. From the table of piezoelectric material distances the waves had to travel in order to reach
characteri stics, it is apparent that none of the the observation point. Both hi gh and low pressure
materials is an ideal match for NOT. Thus du al zones result, depending on whether the
transducer search units are sometimes made such superimposed aggregate of interfering waves arc
that the transmitter and receiver are made of constructive (in phase) or destructi vc
di fferent transducer material s in order to take (180 degrees out of phase).
advantage of the ir respecti ve strengths and to
minimize their weaknesses. As a special case, the variat ion in beam
pressure as a fu nction of di stance from a circular
As a result of diffraction effects, the sound transducer face and along its major axis is given
beam emitted fro m search units tends to spread - by Eq uation 2-2.
with increasing distance away from the sou nd
source. The sound beam ex iting from a y+ = D 2-I'?(2m+ 1)2. 111=0
± l, ±2, ... i m
transducer can be separaled into two zones or //I 4A(2m + 1) ' ,
areas. The Near (Fresnel) Field and the Far
(Fraunhofer) Field are shown in Figure 2.4 with (Eq.2-2)
the shaded areas represent ing regions of
relatively high pressure. where
Y+ is the position of maxima along the
The near fie ld is the region directly adj acent central ax is,
to the transducer and characte ri zed as a D is the diameter of a circular radiator, and
collection of symmetrical hi gh and low pressure A is the wavelength of sound in the med ium.

Figure 2.4. Conceptual representation of the sound field

emitted by a circular plane~wave piezoelectric

Near Far
(Fres nel) (Fralin/lOfer)

Since ')...2 is in significant compared to D2 for resolution but allow less penetration into
most ultrason ic testing frequencies, particularly com mon engineering materials. A short
in water, at the last maximum, (m = 0), time-duration pulse of only a few cycles is
Equation 2-2 becomes: known as a broadband pulse because its
, frequency-domain eq ui valent bandw idth is large.
y,+ D- Such pulses exhibit good depth resolution.
o ~ 41.
(Eq. 2-3) Most search units are constructed with a
backing material bonded to the rear face of the
Th is point defines the end of the near field transducer that provides strength and damping
and is the same expression as given in for the transducer elemen t. This backing material
Equation 1-9. is usuall y an epoxy, preferentiall y fill ed with
tungsten or so me other hi gh-density powder that
At distances well removed from the sound increases the effective density of the epoxy to
source (the far field), the waves no longer somethi ng approaching that of the transducer
interfere with each other (since the di ffere nce in element. Thus the tungsten assists in matching
travel path to the center and edge of the source the acoustic impedance of the transducer (which
are much less than a wavelength) and the so und is usually relatively high) to the backing
field is reduced in strength in a monotonic material. When the backing is in intimate contact
manner. In the fa r field, the beam is diverging with the transducer, the pulsc duration is
and has a sphericall y shaped wave front as if shortened to a few osc ill atio ns and decreased in
radiating from a point source. The far field sound peak signal amplitude. The pulse energy is
field intensi ty decreases due to both the distance therefore partitioned between the item being
fro m the source and the diffraction-based tested and the backing material (which removes
direc ti vity (beam shape) factor. Maximum the rearward-directed waves and absorbs them in
pressure amplitudes exist along the beam the eoarse·surfaced epoxy) .
ce nterline. Figure 2.5 shows a graphi cal
representation of a typical di stance-amplitude Search unit s corne in many types and styles
variation for a straight beam transducer. depending upon their purpose. Most search units
use an L-wave-generati ng sound source.
The penetration, depth resolution, and "Normal"
, or "straight" beam search units, the
sensit ivity of an ultrasonic system are strongly colloquial names given to longitudinal wave
dependent upon the nature of the pulse emitted transducers when used in contact testing , are so
by the transducer. High-freq uency, named because the sound beam is directed into
short-duration pulses exhibit bener depth the material in a perpendicular (normal )
direction. These units generate longitudinal
waves in the material and are used for thickness
Figure 2.5. Typical straight beam gaging and flaw detection of laminar-type flaws.
DAC curve Both contact and immersion search units are
readil y available. To improve near-surface
Near F"icl!.f-!ar Field resolu tion and to decrease noise, standoff
devices and dual crysta l uni ts may be used.
i Transverse (shear) waves are introduced into
test material s by inclining the incident L-wave
beyond the first critical angle, yet short of the
second critical angle. In immersion testing. thi s
is done by changi ng the ang le of the search unit
manipulator. In the case of cylindrical products,
shear waves can be generated by offsetting the
Metal Travel Distance -----+ transducer from the centerl ine of the pipe or
round bar being inspected. Fi gure 2.6 shows a

signifi cant shear moduli (except fo r highly
Figu re 2.6. Introduction of shear waves viscous materials), they do not transmit shear
through mode conversion waves. s Couplants should wet the surfaces of
both the search uni t and the material under test in
order to exclude any air that might become

entrapped in the gap(s) between the transducer

Search Unit
Incident Beam
and the test piece. Couplants must be inert to
both the test material and the search unit.

7-\1 _ 45 Degree
Refracted Beam
Contact couplants mu st have many desirab le
properties including: wetability (crystal, shoe,
and teSt material s), proper viscosity, low cost,
removability, noncorros ive and nontoxic
~ properties , low attenuation, and an acoustic
impedance that matches well with the other
materials. In se lect ing the couplant, the operator
must consider all or most of these factors
depending on the surface fini sh, type of material ,
typical testing configuration for solid round tem penHure, surface orien tatio n, and avail abil ity.
material s. For the case of a 45-degree refracted Th e couplant shou ld be spread in a thin , uniform
beam, a rule of thumb for the di splacement d is film between the transducer and the material
116 the rod diameter. under test. Rough surfaces and vertical or
ove rhead surfaces requi re a hi ghe r viscos ity
In contact testing. the so-called angle-beam coup lantthan smooth , horizontal surfaces.
search unit s cause the beam to proceed through Materi als used in thi s application include vari oll s
the material in a plane that is normal to the grades and viscosities of oi l. g lycerin , paste
surface and typically at angles of 45 , 60, and 70 couplants using cellul ose gum (which tend to
degrees. Transverse waves are introduced by evaporate leav ing litt le or no res id ue), and
pre-cut wedges which, when in contact with vari ous mi sc ible mix tures of these materi als
metal s, generate shear waves through mode using water as a th inn er.
conversion at the wedge- meta l interface. (Sec
Figu re 2.7). Because stainless stee ls and other high-nickc l
alloys are susceptible to stress- re lated corrosion
Hi gh-freq uency (ultrasonic) sound waves crack ing in the prcsence of sulphur and chlorin e,
travel poorly in air and not at all in a vacuum. In the use of couplants contai ning even trace
order fo r the mec hanical energy generated by a amounts of these material s is prohibi ted. Most
transducer to be transmilled into the med ium to commercial coupl ant manufacturers provide
be exam ined, a li quid that bridges the gap certificates of conform ance regarding absence of
between the tran sducer and the test piece is used these c lements, upon request.
to coup le the acoustic wave to the item be ing
tested. T his liqu id is the "couplant" often In a few hi ghly spec ial ized appli cat ions, dry
mentioned in UT. When immers ion testin o" is couplants, such as a sheet of elastomer, have
being conducted, the part is immersed in water been used. Bond ing the tran sducer to the test
which serves as the couplant. When contact item, usuall y in di stributed materials
testing is be ing conducted, liquids with varying characteri zatio n studies, is an accepted practice.
viscos iti es are used in order to avoid unnecessary High pressure and intermittent co ntact without a
runoff, particu larly with materia ls with very coupling medium, has also been used o n
rough contact surfaces or when testing overhead
or vertica ll y.
' Because the acoustic impedance of ai r is so much different than
thai of the commonly used trJnsducers and test materials. its
Liquids tran smit longitudinal sound waves presc~ce ~flects an obj~t ionable amount of acoustic energy OIl
coupl ~ng tn!crfa.ces. but LS the main reason ullrasonic testing is
rather well. but because of their lack of any effective with aLr-filled cr.acks and similar critical discontinuitics.

high-temperature steel ingots.
Although these approaches Figure 2.7. Contact shear wave transducer design
have been reported in the
literature, they are not
commonly used in production Angle Beam Wedge
appl ications.

Water is the most widely

used couplant for immersion
testing. It is inexpensive, L
plentiful, and relatively inert
to the material s involved. It is
so metimes necessary to add
wetting agents, antirust
additives and antifouling s
agents to the water to prevent
corrosion, ensure absence of air bubbles on test Focusing has three principal advantages.
part surfaces, and avoid the growth of bacteria First, the energy at the focal point is increased,
and algae. Bubbles are removed from both the which increases the sensitivity or signal
transducer face and the material under amplitude. Second, sensit ivity to reflectors above
exam ination by regular wiping of these surfaces and below the focal point is decreased, which
or by water jet. reduces the ';noise." Third, the lateral resolution
is increased because the focal point is normally
In immersion testing, the sou nd beam can be quite small, permitting increased definition of
focused using plano-concave lenses, producing a the size and shape of the reflector.
higher, more concentrated beam that results in
better lateral (spatial) resolution in the vicinity of Focusing is useful in applications such as the
the focal zone. Thi s focusing moves the last peak examination of a bondline between two
of the near field closer to the transducer than that materials, e.g., a compos ite material bonded to
found with a flm transducer. Lenses may be an aluminum frame. When examined from the
formed from epoxy or other plastic materials, composite side, there are many echoes from
e.g., polystyrene. The focal length is detennined within {he composite which interfere with the
using Equation 2-4. desired interface signal; however, focusing at the
(I1-J) bondline reduces the interference and increases
R = F-- (Eq.2-4) system sensitivity and resolution at the bond line
R is the len s radius of curvature, Where a shape other than a si mple round or
F is the focal length in water, square transducer is needed, particularly for
1/ is the ratio of the acoustic L-wave larger-area sound field sources, transducer
velocities, elements can be assembled into mosaics and
/I = V/V where exc ited either as a si ngle unit or in special timing
sequences. Mosaic assemblies may be linear,
VI is the longitudinal velocity in epoxy, circular, or any combination of these geometries.
V2 is the velocity in water. With properly timed sequences of exciting
pulses, these units can function as a linear array
For example, to get a focal length of 2.5 in. (w ith steerable beam angles) or as transducers
using a plexiglass lens and water, the radius of with a vari able focus capabi lity. Paint brush
curvature equation uses a velocity ratio of transducers are usually a single element
n = 1.84 and the equation becomes search-unit with a large length-to-width ratio and
are used to sweep across large segments of
R = 2.5 (0.84/1.84) = 1.14 in. material in a single pass. The sound beam is

broad and the lateral resol ution and flaw often displayed using a curvili near coordinate
sensi tivity is not as good as smaller transducers. system whi ch displays time of pulse arrival in
the radial direction (measured from the
transducer) and wi th transducer location
Special Equipment Features fo llow ing the surface contour of the test objecl.

The basic e lectronic pulser/receiver di splay When pl an views of objects are needed, the
units arc augmented with spec ial features C Scan system is used and is partic ul arl y
intended to ass ist operators in easing the burden effective for flat materials includi ng honeycomb
of maintaining a hi gh leve l of alertness during panels, rolled products, and adhesively bonded
the often unin teresting process of conduct ing or lami nated composites. The C Scan is
routine inspections, particularly of regular developed usin g a raster scan pattern (X versus
shapes during origi nal manufacture, as well as Y) over the test part surface. The presence of
obtain ing some type of permanent record of the questionable conditi ons is detected by gat ing
results of the ins pect ion. signals fallin g withi n the thick ness of the part (or
moni tori ng loss of transmi ss ion) as a function of
A SCl:m information represents the material location. C Sca nning systems usc either storage
cond ition through whi ch the sound beam is oscilloscopes or other recording devices, coupled
passing. The fundamental A Scan display, to au tomati c scanning systems which represent a
although hi ghl y informative regarding material " plan ," i. e., map. view of the part, similar to the
homogeneity, does not yield infonnation view produced in radiography. Figure 2.8 shows
regarding the spatial distribution of ultrasonic examp les of these display options.
wave reflectors until it is connected with
scanning mechanisms that can suppl y the Accumulation of data for display in the form
physical locat ion of the transducer in of B or C Scans is extracted lI sing electronic
conjunct ion with the reflector data obtained with "gates." Gates are circu its which ex tract time
the A Scan unit. and amplitude information of selected signals on
the A Scan presentati on and feed these as analog
When cross-sect iona l information is recorded data to other signal process ing or displ ay circu it s
lI sing a rectilinear B Scan system, it is the time or devices. The start time and durat ion of the
of arrival of a pu lse (vertical direction) ploued as gate are operator se lectable. CRT representations
a fun ction of the transducer position (horizontal of the gate are raised or depressed baseli nes, a
di rection) that is di splayed. Circu lar objects are horizont al bar, or two vertica lli ncs. Availab le

Figure 2.8. Comparison of common display modes

/ Front Surface
.....-- Lamination
A Scan
LJL....Jf\:...~== Back Surface
B Scan Top of Plate
Bottom of Plate

C Scan

with adjustable thresholds, gates can
be set to record signals whic h either Figure 2.9. RF display showing phase reversal
exceed or drop be low spec ified upon reflection
threshold seuings.

Details of rece ived signals can be

seen and/or disregarded through use I
of the RF di spl ay and the Reject
controls, respect ive ly. The RF display ~
"0 _
shown in Figure 2.9 is representative = ~
;:.::: 0 II II
of the actual ultrasonic stress pul ses Q.~ f- I
received. In thi s mode, the first E~ r
oscill atio n (downward at 17 ~ s) <
shows the nature of the pul se
(compress ion or rarefacti on) when -I
rece ived. Note the in version of the
shapeofth e pulseaI19,2 1, ... , 16 18 20 22 24 26
microseco nds du e to phase inversion Time
caused by reflectio n from a "free" (Microseconds)
boundary . This phase reversal can be
llsed to disc riminate between " hard"
boundaries (hi gh impedance) and "soft"
boundaries (low impedance such as air).

The reject control, o n the other hand, tends

to discri minate agai nst low-leve l signals,
th rough use of a threshold , below which no
information is made avail able to the operator.
Earl y vers ions of the reject circuitry tended to
alter the verti cal linearity of UT systems;
however, thi s condition has been corrected in
several of the newer digital fl aw detector
in struments .

Chapter 2 Review Questions
Q.2- 1 Barium titanate is a piezoelectric Q.2-5 A 5 MHz, 0.5 in. diameter, flat search unit
materi al which: in water has a ncar field length of
A. occurs naturally.
B. is piezoe lectric al temperatures A. 7 in.
above the critical temperature. B. 2 in.
C. has a high acoustic impedance. c. 3-1/3 in.
D. is highly soluble in water. D. 5-1/2 in.

Q.2-2 Du ri ng an immersion test, numerous Q.2-6 A concave lens on a transducer will result in
bubbles are noted in the water attached the near field in water being:
to the test item. These bubbles are small
relati ve to the part size. What steps A. twice as long as with a flat lens.
should the operator take? B. three limes as long as with a fl at lens.
C. the same length as with a flat lens.
A. Remove the bubbles by blowi ng D. shol1er than with a fl at lens.
them off with an air hose.
B. Ig nore the bubbles because they are Q.2-7 A 10 MHz, 0.5 in. d iameter search unit is
small and wi ll not interfere with the placed on steel and acrylic plastic in
test. succession. The beam spread in these two
C. Remove the bubb les, with brush or materi als is approx imately:
other mechan ical means such as
rubbing with the hand while the test A. 3 and 1.5 degrees, respect ively.
is stopped . B. 1.5 and 3 degrees, respectively.
D. Count the bubbles and mark thei r C. equal in the (Wo materials.
echoes on the test record. D. less than the beam spread of a 15 MH z
search un it of the same diameter.
Q.2-3 A couplant is needed for a test on a hot
steel plate (250 ' F). Whieh of the Q.2-8 Focused transducers are useful because the:
follow ing materials can be used?
A. smaller beam diameter increases the
A. water number of scans required to examine an
B . mercury object.
c. tractor o il B. lateral resol uti on is improved.
D. none of the above C. lateral reso lution is unimportant.
D. focal po int is located beyond the end of
Q.2-4 A couplant is needed for a test on the near field length of a similar,
stainless steel welds. Numerous unfocused transducer.
couplants are availab le. Which should
be chosen and why? Q.2-9 In spite of the fact that a long pul se has
bener depth penetration than a short pulse,
A. a couplant free of ch lorine because the use o f a lo ng pul se is not recommended
thi s element corrodes stainl ess steel because:
B. glycerin because it is no nflammable
C. oil because it is easily removed A. the long ringing may interfere with
D. water because stainless steel does nearby pu lses.
not corrode in water B. the shorter pulse will provide beller
C. a long pu lse contains less energy than a
shorter pulse.
D. a long pulse is recommended .

Q.2. 10 Backing material on a transducer is used Q.2.14In Figure 2.6 and using the conditions of
to: Q.2-13, what is the offset distance
needed for a 45-degree refracted
A. damp the pulse and absorb the sound longitudinal wave to be generated?
from the back of the transducer.
B. decrease the thickness oscillations. A. 0.395 in.
e. increase the radial mode osci ll ations. S. 0.450em
D. increase the power of the transmiued C. 0.505 in.
pulse. D. 1.026cm

Q.2· l l Ang le beam search units are used to: Q.2-15 It is desired to detect flaws 1/4 in. or less
from the entry surface using angle beam
A. inspect bUll joint welds in thick·wall shear waves. The search unit must be
steel piping. selected with the choice between a
B. produce shear waves through mode narrow band and a broadband unit.
conversion. Which should be chosen and why?
e. examine material vo lumes
inaccessib le to nonnal beams. A. The narrow band unit because it
D. all of the above. examines on ly a narrow band of the
Q.2· 12 An angle beam transducer produces a B. The broadband unit because the entire
45-degree shear wave in steel. What is volume is exam ined with a long
the approximate inciden t angle? (velocity pulse.
in steel = 0.125 in.lms, veloc ity in plastic e. The broadband unit because the near
: 0.105 in.!m,) surface resolution is better.
D. The broadband unit because the
A. 54.9 degrees lateral resoluti on is excellent.
B. 19 degrees
C. 36.4 degrees Q.2-16 In a longitud in al-wave immersion test o f
D. 45 degrees commercially pure titanium plate
(V, : 6.1 ( 10)' COlis, VT :
Q.2-13 In Figure 2.6, the aluminum rod being 3.12 ( 10)5 cm/s). an echo pulse from an
examined is 6 in. in diameter. What is the internal defect is observed 6.56 Il s
offset di stance needed for a 45-degree fo llow ing the front surface echo. How
refracted shear wave to be ge nerated? deep is the renector below the front
[L-wave veloc ity in aluminum = surface?
6.3 ( 10)5 cm/s, T -wave velocity in
aluminum = 3. 1 ( I O)Scmls, A. 2cm
velocity in water = 1.5 (lO)s cm/s] B. 4cm
e. I em
A. 0.513 em D. 2in.
B. 1.026 in.
C. 2.052 in. Q.2-17 A change in echo amplitude from
D. 1.505 em 20 percent of full screen height (FSH) to
40 percent FSH is a change of:

A. 20dS.
S. 6dS.
C. 14dB.
D. 50 percent in signal ampli tude.

Q. 2-18 In Figure 2.10. what is the rate of Q.2-22 A change of 16 dB o n the attenuator
attenuation, expressed in dBlin .. of the corresponds to an amplitude rat io o f:
5 MHz transducer as observed in the far
field? The horizontal scale is 0.5 in. per A. 6.3: I.
divi sion and the vel'lieal scale is linear. B. 5.2: I.
C. 7.4: I.
A. 1.00 dB/in. D. 9.5: I.
B. 2.22 dB/in.
C. 2.55 dB/in. Q.2-23 When checked again st a previous
D. 3.25 dBlin. calibration level. a search unit which is
classified as highly damped is
Q. 2-l9 In Figure 2.10. what is the rate of considerably more sensit ive. A check of
attenuation of the 2.25 MHz transducer the RF waveform shows that the unit
using the condition s of Q.2-18? rings for at least three times the nu mber
of cycles previous ly achieved. What
A. 2.0 dB/in . condi tion mi ght explain this phenomena?
B. 3.5 dB/in .
C. 4.0 dB/in. A. The search unit has been dropped and
D. 8.0 dB/in. the facing material has been cracked.
B. The backing material has separated
Q.2-20 What lens radiu s of curvature is needed from the crystal , thu s decreasi ng the
in order to havc a 2 cm diameter, 5 MH z mechanica l damping.
tran sducer focus in watcr at a distance of C. The housing has separated from the
4 em from the lens face? [V1/10 = transducer and thinks it is a bell.
1.49 ( 10)' CIll/S, V,,", = 2.67 ( 10)' CIll/S I D. The coax connector is fill ed with
A. 1.77 em
B. 3.50cm Q.2-24 The sound beam emanating from a
C. 3. 17 in. continuous wave sound source has two
D. 2.23 in. zones. These are called the:

0.2-21 Two signa lS were compared in amplitude A. Fresnel and Fraunhofer zones.
to each other. The second was found to B. Fresnel and near fie ld s.
be 14 dB less than the first. This change e. Frau nh ofer and far fields.
cou ld have represented a change of: D. focused and unfocused zones.

A 70 percent FSH to 14 percen t FSH.

B. 100 percent FSH to
50 percent FSH. Figure 2.10. Distance-amplitude response of two 3/4 in.
e. 20 percent FS H to diameter search units
100 percent FS H.
D. 100 percent FS H to
25 percent FS H.
.•, 3
5 MHz

".:•• 2

-' 1

'~"• 0
2.25 MHz
Metal Travel Dista n ce

Chapter 3
Common Practices
Chapter 3
Common Practices
Approaches to Testing triangulation techniques. When the rcceive r is
positioned alo ng the propagatio n axis and across
Most ultrasonic in spection is done using the from the transmitter, the technique is call ed the
pul se· echo technique wherein an acoustic puise, through -tran smi ss ion approach to ultrasoni c
reneeted from a loca l change in acoustic testing. Figure 3. 1 shows these three modes of
impedance, is detected by the original sending pul se-echo testing with Iypica l inspection
sound source. Rece ived signal s indicate the appl ications.
presence of di scontinuities (i nternal or external)
and their di stances from the pulse-echo [n the through-transmission techn.ique. the
transducer, which are directly proportionailO the sound beam travels through the test item and is
time of echo-pul se arri val. For this situation. rece ived on the side oppos ite from the
access to only onc side o f the test item is needed , transmitter. Two transducers. a transmitter and a
which is a tremendous advantage over rece iver, are necessary. The time represented on
throu gh-transmi ssion in man y applications. For the screen is indi cat ive of a single traverse
maximum detection reliability, the sound wave through the material , wi th coupling and
~ hould encounter a rc n cctor at normal incidence ali gnment bein g critica l to the technique's
to its major surface. success ful application.

If the receivi ng transducer is separated from [n some two-transducer pitch-catch

the se nding transducer, the configuration is techniques, both transducers are located on the
called a pitch-catch. The int.erpretation o f same side of the materi al. The time between
discont inuity locati on is determined us ing pulses corresponds to a sin gle tra verse of the

Figure 3.1. Pulse-echo inspection configurations

Pulse-echo Pitch-catch
l1a !.&
(Plate) ~ (WeldRoot)
Through-transmission Delta

(Weld Porosity)

sound fro m the transm itter to the reflector and angle beams, partic ul arly where access by
then to the receiver. One approach uses a straight beams is unsati sfactory, e.g., irregul arl y
"tandem" pitch-catch arrangement, usuall y for shaped forg ings, castings, and assemblies.
the centra l region of thi ck materials. In this
technique, the transmitter sends an angle beam to Surface (Rayleigh) waves are not as common
the midwall area of the materi al (often a double as the long itudinal and shear waves , but are used
V we ld root) and deflections from vert ical pl anar to great advantage in a li mited number of
surfaces are rece ived by one or more transducers applications that requi re an abi li ty of the wave to
located behind the transminer. Another follow the contours of irregul arly shaped
pitch-catch tech niq ue, fou nd in immersion surfaces such as jet engine blades and vanes.
testing, uses a focused receiver and a Ray leigh waves extend from the surface to a
broad-beam transm itter, arranged in the shape of depth of about one wavelength into the material
a triangle (delta technique). This technique rel ies and thus are onl y sensitive to surface or very
on reradiated sound waves (mode conve rsion of ncar-surface fl aws . They are very sensit ive to
shear energy to long itudinal energy) from surface condi tions including the presence of
internal reflectors, with background noise res idual coupling compound s as well as fi nger
reduction through use of the focused receiver. dampi ng. Ray leigh waves are usually generated
by mode conversion using angle beam search
When sound is introduced into the materi al at un its des igned to produce shear waves j ust
an angle to the surface, angle beam testing is beyond the second critical angle.
being done. When thi s angle is red uced to
odegrees, it is called "straight" or "normal" Two major modes of coupling ultrasound
beam exami nation and is used extensively on into test parts are used in UT: contact and
plate or other flat materi al. Laminations in plate immersion. The manuaJ contact technique is the
are readily detected and sized with the srraight most common fo r large items whi ch are diffic ult
beam technique. Although it is poss ible to to handle. e.g., plate materi als, structures, and
transmi t shear waves "st raight " into materi als, pressure vessels. Both straigh t and angle beams
longitudinal waves are by far the most common are used. Coupl ing for the manual contact
wave mode used in these appli cations. technique requires a medium wi th a hi gher
viscosity than that of water and less than that of
Sou nd bea ms can be refracted at the heavy greases. In mechanized (automated)
interfaces of two diss im ilar med ia. The angles test ing, the coupl ant is often waler that is made
can range fro m just greater than 0 degrees to to now between the transducer and the test pi ece.
90 degrees (correspo nding to thei r li mit ing During manua l tests. the operator provides the
critical incident angle conditi on) if the second couplant repetiti vely during the examination.
medium has the hi gher acoustic wave veloci ty.
Shear wave angle beams are usua ll y greater than Manual contact testi ng is very versatile si nce
20 degrees (in order to avoid the presence of search units are easily exchanged as the needs
more than one mode being present withi n the arise, and a high degree of flex ibi li ty ex ists for
material at the same time) and less than angul at ion and changes in directi ons of
80 degrees (in order to avoid the spurious inspection. Test items of many different
generation of surface waves). confi gurations can be examined with little
difficulty. One of the prime advantages of
Angle beams (both shear and longitudinal) contact testing is its portability. UT instrument s
arc often used in the exami nation of welds since of briefcase size and weighing less than 20 Ibs
cri tica l flaws such as cracks, lack of fu sion, are readily avai labl e. With this type of
inadequate penetration. and slag have instrumen t and contact tec hniques, UT is
dimensions in the throughwa ll direction. Angle performed almost anywhere the inspector can go.
beams are used because they can achieve Ski ll ed operators can make evaluations on the
c1ose-to-normal incide nce for these reflectors spot and with a high degree of re li abi lity.
with gene rall y vertical surfaces. Other types of
structures and configurations are exami ned using Immersion testi ng uses a column of liquid as
an intermediate med ium for conducti ng sound
"'a\'es 10 and from test parts, Immersion testi ng Of all the adv:,ulI ages, perhaps the most
can be performed with the test item immersed in important is thc ability to use different search unit
\\ater (or some other appropriate liquid) or sizes and shapes in an automat ic inspection mode.
throug h use of vari ous devices (bubblers and Beam focus ing is commonly used to improve
squi l1ers) that mainlain a continuo us watcr path spat ial resolution and increase sensitivity;
betwee n the Iransducer(s) and the test item. Most however, scan times increase dramatically.
examinations are conducted using automatic Automated testing has man y advantages,
scanning systems. The immersion technique has incl uding increased sca nning speed. reduced
many ad vantages . Many sizes, shapes and styles operator dependence. and adaptability to imag ing
of searc h units are availab le including flat , and signal processi ng equi pment.
foc used, round, rectangular. paintbrush, and
arrays , Automated examin ation is easi ly Immersion tank s may be long and narrow (for
accom modate. Surface fin ish is less troubleso me pipe and tubing in spection) or short and deep (for
si nce transducer wear doe s not take place. bulky forgi ngs), In general, tanks are equ ipped
Various size and shape objects may be tested. with a mean s for filling. drain ing, and fi lteri ng the
Scann ing can be faster and more thorough than water. The tank may contain test item
manual scanning. Recordin g o f pos ition and fl aw manipulators (for spinning pipe and rotating
data is straight forward . Data prec ision is hi gher samples) and a scanning bridge system (for
si nce hi gher freq uency (and more fragile) translat ing search units along rectilinear and/or
transdu cers can be used. polar coord inates). Tan k capacities range from
one or two cubic feet to a few thousand cubi e feet.
Di sad vantages include long setup time, Most tanks are equ ipped wit h one or more
maintenance of coupling liquids. preset scan! scanning bridgcs whi ch trave l on tracks the length
artic ul ation plans reduce usc of spontaneous of the tank and are under the control of the
posi tionin g, high signal loss al test part-water operator or an automatic test sy ste m. The bridge
in te rface, hi ghly critical positi oning/angulation across the tank contains rails on which the search
problems. and system align ment in gene ral.

Figure 3.2. Typical immersion ultrasonic scanning system

unit manipulator rides. Other equipment carried of water at the test pi ece. The search unit,
on the bridge may incl ude the ultrasoni c located inside and coaxially with the nozzle,
instrument, a C Scan or other recorder, and emits a sound beam axially through the stream.
signal processing equipment needed to ex tract Figure 3.3 shows a conceptual draw ing of an
information from the ultrasonic signals. ultrasonic water jet (sq uirter).
Figure 3.2 shows an example of a typical tank
configuration used for inspect ion of smaller If the nozzle is designed properl y and the
items. water flo w parameters are set correct ly, there are
no bubbl es at the interface of the water and the
In scanning flat test objects with a test piece and sound can be transmitted into the
longitudinal beam, the search unit manipulator piece. The sound beam impinging on a test part
traverses the test item in a raster· like pattern is restricted in cross-secti onal size by the stream
(tra verse-i ndex·traverse-index· ...· ... ). The of water which acts as a wavegu ide and
recorder, "enabled" using the gating circuits, collimator. Both the squi rter and the bubbler
records the data in sy nchroni sm with the position (water co lumn) can be used wi th pulse-echo or
of the search uni t manipulator. lhrough· transmi ss ion techniques and can take
advantage of beam foc using. If the free slream of
There are several types of manipulators used the squ irter is long, the deflection due to gmv ity
for handling test parts. These manipulators shi ft may have to be considered in the scanning plan.
or rotate the test item under the bridge in such a
manner that the search unit may scan the It is often desirable to keep a test item
requ ired speci men surface. Rotational axes may relat ively dry wh ile performing ultrasonic
be hori zontal, vertical , or other desired angles. examinations. One way of doing thi s and yet
Manipulator mot ion may be under the control of maintain many of the advantages of immersion
the operator or the automatic system. Control testing is to use wheel transducers. The wheels
centers may be programmed to perform very used for UT testing are sim ilar to automOli ve
basic scan patterns or, in the case of some tires in that they are largely hollow and there is a
computer·based systems, very complex fl ex ibl e "tread" in contact with the test item. In
operations. Most scans are preprogrammed and the UT wheel, the search unit is mounted on a
thus are not changed readily . gimbal manipulator inside the tire and the tire is
filled with a liqu id - usually water. The search
It is imperative that the search unit be in the unit is aimed through the tread (a thin
des ired posi tion at all times so that the sound elastomeric me mbrane such as polyurethane).
beam is in terrogating the intended test area. Thi s The gimbal mounting permits the incident sound
is accompli shed by a positioner attached to the
end of the search tube used to "point" the search
unit in the desired direct ion. Thus the search unit
has several degrees of positi onal freedom (X, Y, Figure 3.3. Diagram of a water jet for
Z, 8, $). ultrasonic tests

It is not always feasible to immerse a test To Ultrasonic instrument

object in a tank for UT testing. Limits are ( Water Couplant
imposed by the size and shape of the test object
as well as by the capaci ty of the tank . To 1
circumvent these problems, scan ning systems are
often provided with squirters or water columns. •
While differing sli ghtl y in design, each of these
serves the same purpose - to establish a column
• •
of water between the search unit and the test
item through wh ich the sound beam will pass.
Squirters employ a nozzle which squirts a stream Transducer

beam to be orien ted so that it produces either Measuring System
shear or longitudinal waves (or other modes) in
the test part as if immers ion testing were taking Performance
UT calibrat ion is the practi ce of adj usting the
Because the tire is flexible and conforms to ga in , sweep, and range, and of assessing the
the surface, littl e external cou pl ant is needed. At impact that other parameters of the instrument
times, howe ver, a sma ll spray of water or alcohol and the test confi guration may have on the
is introduced just ahead of the wheel to exclude re li able interpretation of ultrasonic signal
the possibili ty of small amounts of air becom ing echoes. Gain seuings are normally established by
trapped at the wheel' S contact surface. Th is thin adj usting the vertical height of an echo signal, as
layer of liquid evaporates rapidly without seen on the CRT, to a predetermined leve l. The
damage to the test item. Although wheels are level may be required by spec ification and based
somewhat limited as to the shapes of materia ls on echo respon ses from specific standard
they can ex amine, th ey are useful on large, rc nectors in material similar 10 that which will
reasonably nat surfaces. More than one whee l be tested. Sweep di stance of the CRT is
can be used at the same time , e.g., tandem estab li shed in terms of eq ui va lent "sound path."
configurati ons are poss ible. They are useful in where the sound path is the di stance in the
hi gh temperature app lications (where the liquid material to be tested from the sound entry point
is continuously coo led) and sets of transducers to the reflector.
can be placed wi th in a sing le wheel. A major
problem is the elim inat ion of internal echoes It is important to establ ish these parameters.
from structural members within the liquid Gain is establi shed so that comparisons of the
chamber. These echo problems are usually reference level can be Illade to an echo of
eliminated by careful design incorporating the interest in order to dec ide whether the echo is of
empirical placement of baffles and absorbers. any consequence and. if so, then to aid in the
determination of the size of the reflector.1i Sweep
Tn both manu al and automatic scanning , the distance is establi shed so that the location of the
pattern of scanning is important. If too many re Oector can be detenn ined.
scan traverses are made the part will be
overtested, with time and money be ing lost. On Hori zontal lineari ty is a measure of the
the other hand, if the coverage of the scans is uniformity of the sweep speed of the instrument.
insuflic ienL, sections of the part wi ll not be The in strument must be wi thin the linear
examined and defec ts may be missed. Therefore, dynami c ranges of the sweep ampl ifiers and
time dedicated to developi ng a scanning plan is assoc iated c ircuitry in order for e lectron beam
seldom wasted. In developing the plan, whi ch position to be directly pro portional to the time
lays out the patterns of search unit manipu lation, elapsed fro m the start of the sweep. It may be
it is necessary to cons ider appUcable codes, checked using multiple back·echoes from a flat
smndards, and specifi cations as we ll as making plate of a conve nient thickness, i.e., I in. With
an engineering evaluation of the potenti al the sweep set to display mult iple back-echoes.
locations, orientations. sizes, and types of flaws the spacing between pul ses should be equal. The
expected in the part. After these criteri a have instrument should be recali brated if the sweep
been deve loped, sound beam modes, angles, linearity is not wi thin the specified tolerance.
beam spread, and attenuation must all be Yerticallinearity impli es thallhe height of the
considered to ensure that all of the material is pulse displayed on the A Scan is directly
interrogated in the desired direction(s). Thi s proportional to the acoustic pul se rece ived by the
in formation is used to establish scan lengths. transducer. For example, if the ec ho increases b)
di rect ion, overlap. index increments, and
electronic gate seuings.
~Itis important to recognize that the use of amplitude to ~ize a
reflector is subject to large. uncontrolled errors and must b<
approached with caution.

50 percen t, the indicated ampl.itude on the CRT
should also change by 50 percent. Thi s variable Figure 3.4. Spherical reflector measuring
may be checked by establi sh ing an echo signal sound field
on the screen , changing the vertical amplifier
gain in set increments, and measuring the ,
correspo nding changes in A Scan response. An
alternate check uses a pair of echoes with ,
amplitudes in the ratio of 2: I . Changes in gain
should not affect the 2: 1 ratio, regardless of the
amplifier" s senings.

It is of note that when electronic DAC units "1

Focal Point
are used in an ultrasonic system, the vertical
amplifier's displayed output is purposefully
made to be nonlinear. The nature of the
nonlinearity is adj usted to compensate for the
v"'·'----- Focused Search Unit
estimated (or measured) variat ion in the test
material/inspect ion system's aggregate decay in
signal strength as a funct ion of di stance (time) omn idirectional sound wave response. The
from the sending transducer. effecti ve refl ectance from a sphere is much
sma ller than that received from a nat reflector of
the same diameter due to it s sphcricaJ directivity
Reference Reflectors pattern. Most of the reflected energy does not
return to the search unit. Spheres of any material
There arc severa l reflector types commonly can be used; however, steel ball bearings are the
used as a basis for establi sh ing syste m norm si nce these are reasonably priced,
performance and sensit ivity. Included among extremely precise as to size and surface finis h,
them are spheres and flat-bollom holes (FBH), and available in many sizes.
notches, side-drilled holes (SDH), and other
spec ial purpose or designs. Table 3.1 Flat renectors are used as cal ibration
summari zes these reflectors and their advantages standards in both immersion and contact testing.
and limitat ions. They are usually flat-bottom drilled holes of the
des ired diameters and depthS. All flat renectors
Spherical reflectors are used most oflen in have the inherent weakness that they requi re
immersion testi ng for assessing transducer sound careful sound beam-renector axis al ignment.
fields as shown in Figure 3.4. Spheres provide Deviation s of little more than a few degrees will
excellen t repeatability because of their lead to sign ificant ly reduced echoes and become
unacceptable for
calibration. However,
Table 3.1. Reference Reflectors Used in Ultrasonic Testing
for flaws of cross-
sec tion less than the
Type Characteristics Uses beam width and wi th
Solid Sphere Omnidirectional Transducer sound field
a perpendicular
assessment ali gnment, the signal
amplitude is
Notches Flat, corner Simulates ncar-surface cracks proponional to the
area of the refl ector
Flat-Bottom Hole (FBH) Disc reflector Reference gain as shown in Figure
Side-Drilled Hole (SOH) Cylindrical symmetry Distance DAC calibration 3.5. Generally, if a
flaw echo am plitude
Special Custom reflectivity Simulate natural flaw conditions is equal to the
amplitude of the

longitudinal waves and a mult itude of
Figure 3.5. Area-amplitude relationship for shear wave angles. It is essential that the
FBHs hole surface be smooth, thus reami ng to
100 the final diameter is often the fi nal step
90 in preparing such holes.
>? 80


Used in sets with differing di stances
from the surface and different diameters,
SO side-drilled holes are freq uent ly used for
:t jo'"

.. 40 developing dista nce-ampl itude

os V
"= 30 4
correction curves and for setting overall
sensiti vity of shear wave test in g
ii520 Point of
"1/ schemes. After the sweep cii stance is set.
• S~.~d~r~iz~ti,on,
.#2 signal s from each reflector are
0;:)10 20 30 4 0 ; :. ) 0 6 0 7 0 80 maximi zed (by maneuvering the search
Area Units unit) and the resu lts are recorded on the
screen using erasab le markers or stored
in a di gital fo rmat. The peak signals from each
calibration re nector, it is assumed that the naw renector are then connected by a smooth line and
is at least as large as the calibration reflector. it is thi s line that is called the di stance-amplitude
correction (DAC) curve.
Notches are frequentl y used to assess the
detectabilit.y of surface-breaking flaws such as
cracks, as well as for instrument calibration. Calibration
NOiches of several shapes arc used and can
eit her be of a rectangular or " Vee" cross section. The setting of basic in strument con trols is
Notches may be made wi th milling cutters (end ex pedited by the use of several standard sets of
mills), circular saws, or straight saw s. End-mill blocks containing precision reflectors arranged to
(or EDM) notches may be made with highl y feature a specific characteri st ic of the in spection
variable length and depth dimensions. Circular systems. For example, area-amplitude blocks
saw cut s are limited in length and depth by the contain flat-bottom holes of differing diameters,
saw diameter and the configuration of the all at the same di stance from the sound entry
device hold ing the saw. Even though it is surface. The block material is normally sim ilar to
somewhat more difficult to achi eve a desired that of the tcst material. In the distance and area
length to depth ratio with the ci rcular saw, these amplitude blocks, a hole is placed in a separate
notches are used frequently because of their cylinder, 2 in. in di ameter. Other blocks, intended
resemblance to fatigue cracks, e.g., shape and for the same purpose of establi shing the
surface finish. Notches may be produced correlation of signal amplitude with the area of
perpencii cular to the surface or at other angles as the reflector, may contain a number of hol es in
dictated by the test configuration. On piping, the same block, usually a plate. Hole sizes
they may be located on the inside diameter and! increase in sixty-fourths of an inch and are
or the olltside diameter and aligned e ither in the designated by that value. For exampl e, a III 6 in.
longitudin al or transverse directions. (4/64 in. ) hol e is a #4 hole. Area ampli tude
blocks are used to establish the area/amplitude
Side-drilled holes are placed in calibration response curve and the sensitivity of the UT
blocks so that the axi s of the hole is parallel to system. Maximum signals are obtained from each
the entry surface. The sound beam impinges on of the holes of interest and the signal amplitude is
the hole, normal to its major axis. Such a recorded. These values may be compared to
reflector provides very repeatable calibrati ons, ec hoes from the same metal path and reflector
may be placed at any desired di stance from (he sizes estimated for the test item. Figure 3.6 shows
entry surface and may be used for both a cross-sectional diagram of a block composed of

di stance. Distance-amplitude
Figure 3.6. Schematic diagram of FBH calibration blocks are useful in setting
block Entry Surrace instrument sensitivity (gain) and
if present the electronic distance-
~ amplitude correction circuits.
Figure 3.7 shows a composite set

Mat.dal Alloy
r of DAC and area-amplitude
calibration curves taken from a
block containing three different
hole sizes (I mm, 2 mm and
Hole Size x 1164 in.)
(Diameter 3.25 mm), measured al distances
ranging from 2.5 mm to 32 mm.
Metal Distance
(1.5 in.)
There are numerous blocks
Flat Bottom
Test Hole corrunerciaJly avai lable that are
Plug used in calibrati ng UT
L~~~~~~~~~~~~~--':':':::~~~~~ . ~~~_ instruments, both for sweep
4340 steel, w ith a FBH size of 5/64 in. (#5 hole) distance (sound path) and for sensitivity (gain) as
and a travel distance of 1.5 in. well as depth resolution. Included in thi s group
are the ~IW (International Institute of Welding),
DSC (distance and sensitivity calibration), DC
Distance-amplitude blocks differ from
(di~tanc.e calibration block), SC (sensitivity
area-amplitude blocks in that a sin oole diameter•
cahbratlOn block), and the A WS RC (Resolution
0al-bOl.tom hole is placed at incrementally
Calibration Block).
mcreasmg depths from very near the entry
surface to a desired maximum depth. Sets of
blocks are avajlable in different materials and Other special blocks are often required in
response to specification and Code requirements
with diameters ranging from Number 1 to
based on the construction of the blocks, using
Number 16 and larger. Distance-amplitude
blocks arc used to establish the distance/ materials of the same nature as those to be
amplitude response characteri stic of the UT inspected. Included are the ASME weld
system in the test material; the measured inspection blocks such as the SDH for angle
beam calibration , curved blocks for pipin g!
response includes the effects of attenuation due
nozzles simulation, and nozzle dropouts (c ircular
to beam spread and scattering and/or absorption.
blanks cut from vesse l plates) for custom nuclear
With this curve establi shed, the operator can
in-service inspection applications. Finally,
compensate for the effects of attenuation with

Figure 3.7. Combined distance and area-amplitude response.


• -
E X 2 mm hole
E '.0o., • 3.25 mm hole
.5 o. , .... 1 mm hole

• '6
'(.,'\.'\,\>' '0 ~ I:.f. ~
'0'0 '0'0 'q 'q '0 -;.. -;..
'~~!:'~~~ .~ "9 .~

Distance from Block Face to Hole

millimeters (inches)

attempts are ongoing to develop schemes for 4 in. radiu s surface. Because different
making reflectors which directl y behave as manufacturers provide variations in the
racks and to ge nerate actual cracks. confi guration of the block, other specific uses
panicu larly in tergranular stress corrosion may be dev ised.
crac ks. Table 3.2 summari zes many of these
blocks and their intended uses. The di stance ca libration (DC) block is
spec ifica ll y designed for selling up the sweep
One o f the best known calibration blocks is di stance for both no rlllal and ang le beam testing
the IIW b loc k shown in Fi gure 3.8. Thi s block fo r e ither lo ngitudinal, shear, or s urface waves.
I:> used primarily for measuring the refracted For straight beam ca li bration, the search unit is
ang le of ang le beam search units, setting thc placed on the I in. or 112 in . thi ck portion and
meta l path , and establi shin g the sensitivity for the sweep di stance adjusted. For angle beam
\~e ld in specti on. To measure the refracted ca libration. the search unit is placed o n the flat
angle. the sOLind beam ex it point is determined surface at the center of the cy lindri cal surfaces.
on the 4 in. radiu s. The angle is then determined Bea m direction is ill a plane normal to the
by max imi zin g the signal from the large cy lindcr axis. When the beam is dirccted in such
side-drilled hole and reading the ex it-poin t a manner, cchoes shou ld occur at 1, 2, or 3 in .
posi tion o n the engraved scalc. intervals. With a surface wave search unit at the
centerline. a surface wave may be calibrated for
Various rcflectors are provided in modified di stance by observin g the echoes from the I and
IIW blocks to provide the capability to set the 2 in. radii and adj usting the control s
sweep distance. These incl ude grooves and according ly.
notches at various locations wh ich yield cchoes
at prec isely known di stances. The block may A min iat ure multipurpose block is shown in
al,o be uscd for sctting di stances for normal Fig ure 3.9. The block is I in. thick and has a
b tra ight bcam) search units usi ng the I in. 1/ 16 in. d iameter side-drilled hole for sensiti vity
th ickness of the block. Di stance resolution may seuings and ang le determinations. For strai ght
also be c hecked o n the notches adjacent to the beam calibration , the bloc k provides back
re nect ion and
Table 3.2. Ca libration Rlock Usage multipliers of I in.
For angle beams, the
Chllrllclcril'tic Block Designation search unit is placed
II\\, DSC AS!\1E DC SC ij A AWS on the tlat surface
(SDH) ( RC) with the beam
directed toward
Sweep R:lI1 ge X/O XlO XlO XlO 0 0 either of thc curved
surfaces. If toward
Sel1~itivjty XlO X/O XlO X 0 0
the I in. radius,
Ex it Poi11t X X X echoes will be
received at I in .. 4
Exit Angle X X X in., and 7 in.
intervals. If toward
the 2 in. rad ius, the
Depth 0 2 X intervals w ill be
Resotution 2 in. , 5 in., and 8 in.
Refracted angles are
Curvature X' measured by
locating the exit
Legend: point using either of
X - Shear Wave
0- Longitudinal Wave
the curved surface s.
I - SCI of Curved Blocks Used The response from
2 - Nea r Surface Only the side-drilled hole
is maximized and
Figure 3.8. IIW block for transducer and system calibration
\?; 91 LlI 01

W ' 50'40'

I 'fl I

IUr"" 10' 10' ' ''

... //:~ b.

19 IC{
~ 91

High Resolution L.ow Resolution

~ L--A
I I '"
I 2 J

Main Pulse Main Pulse


O /w
... / 80'
,. ) d.

r or
the angle read from the engraved scales. Single An example of a special block designed to
po int (zone) sensitiv ity can be estab li shed by compensate for convex surface effects is shown
max imi zing the signal from the SOH. in Figu re 3. 11. Included are the geometrical
fea tures with tolerances needed in the
Distance-amplitude correction curves can be constnlction of typical calibration blocks.
developed for any number of test part
thicknesses using the SO H block shown in A more suitable, but ex pensive, approach to
Figure 3. 10. By placing thc angle beam the testing of complex parts involves the use of
transducer on surfaces which change the sound sac rificial samples into which are placed wave
path distance, a series of peaked re spon ses can reflectors such as FBHs, SO Hs, and notches.
be recorded and pl oued on the CRT screen in the (See Figure 3. 12.)
form of a OAC over the range of distances of
interest to inspect ion.

Figure 3.9. Miniature angle beam calib ration block
1)-1 P-2 1'-1
L I"f ----"
6.25mm :! ' ,- -t
(0.25 in.) r-t---- ,u,
f 25mm
:.,•• ( I in.)

P_I " ·2
R·' R·2

o 60°
" . ~
o " , "

f igure 3.10. Calibration block for DAC development using angle beams

2 in. long to 1/4 in. diameter Oat end:

mill notches 2% T deep
• Through Clad
/ t. T hickness 2% T
Deep into the
,,--_2_;_"'_7 ' -_ +_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _,::;:::/ t Base Metal
3 in. [Note (1)J I
/. ")' ) - - - - - -
. .
" #Of-- Clad LNote (4)J
----<;."0", ,','
- .. //
+ .....'
n2 JT~4~~~~:t~~~~~~;;;;~·~·'~·~~ 6 in. [Note (I)]

1-1/2 in. Minimum _ l Drilled and reamed hOles rLj~ Tl2 (Note ( 1)1
3 in. Deep [NOIe (1)1

Figure 3.11. Convex surface reference block
I' ·1
Grain Flow A ®
® mm m
c ® "
Lm mm ::11~1
:: ::
~ ~

~ ~
1 ~ m ~ I~I~~L
~ ~ ~
c ~ ~

E E .-
:: ::

±O.Q2S mm (0.001 in.)


~3 ' 90 degrees ±30 minutes typical

Tolerance: ±0.025 in.
Tolerance: ±O.Ol in.
@ 100 RHR maximum to p sur face

Figure 3.]2. Use of reflectors in sacrificial (simulated) test parts

Search Unit
Rotor Spider Test Surface

" ' ,
" " ,' , ,
" ' ,
" ',
""" ' ' ,' ,,
" ' ,,

,, Reference Notch 0.75 mm (0.03 in.) Deep

o o

Refere nce bloc ks based upon imbedded
DalUra l refl ecto rs such as cracks by diffu sio n
bonding. altho ugh use ful for the purposes of
~ta bli s hin g a base line for self- teaching adapti ve
learn ing nctworks and relatcd tec hno logies. are
\ery d iffic ult to dupl icate and suffer from an
mability of developing an exac t corre lat ion with
natu rall y occurring fl aws. Of co ncern is the
inabili ty to dupli cate test sa mpl es on a
widespread productio n basis; once dcstructi ve
correlations are carried out, remaking the same
config urat ion is questio nable. Even when such
reflectors ca n be duplicated to so me exte nt, the
nat ura l vari ability of fl aws found in nature sti ll
tends to make thi s approach 10 reference
... [andard s hi ghl y questi onable. In all cases, the
block materials used fo r ca li bration purposes
must be sim ilar to the test mate rials to which the
techniq ues wi ll be appli ed. The conce pt of
trans fer functio ns has bee n used with limited
... ueccss in most criti cal calibrati on settings.

Chapter 3 Review Questions
Q.3- 1 Calibration is the term lI sed to: Q .3-5 A reflector signal was found to be 6 dB
less than that from the cali bration
A. describe the means to measure the reflector at the same sound path. The
diameter of a shaft. calibration reflector was a No . 8 FBH.
B. set up the lest item for examination in W hat can be sa id about the unknown
accordance with ru les estab li shed by refl ector?
the NIST (forme rly the NBS).
C. describe the means to establish the A. It is 4/64 in. diameter.
work in g characteristics of a search B. It is 8/64 in . diameter.
unit. C. It is probably 8/64 in. diameter or
D. describe the process of estab li shing larger.
the gain level and the sweep distance D. It is an unknown size.
of the UT in strument.
Q.3-6 In Fig ure 3.7, the response froml hc
Q.3-2 An area-amp li tude block has the 3.25 mm FB H at a depth of25 mm, is
designation 4340-4-0500. T hi s indicates above that detected fro m the I mm FBH
that it is: by:

A. an alumin um block with a #3 hole at A. 24.0 dB.

a depth of 5 in. B. 18.2 dB.
B. a steel block with a 1/16 in. ho le at a C. 12.0 dB.
depth of 5 in . O. 10.8 dB.
C. a steel block w ith a #5 hole at a depth
of 4 ill. Q.3-7 The half-angle beam spread o f the
D. a Titanium block with a #4 hole at a reflected wave front fro m a #8 FBH in an
depth of 5 in. aluminum "A" block bei ng immersion
tested using a 25 MHz transdu cer is:
Q.3-3 T he term "sweep distance" is used to
[VL = 1.5 (Water); VL , = 6.3; VT _A1 = 3. 1:
... all times ( 10)5 em/s .
A. how fas t the sound is able pass
through the materi al. A. 1.30 degrees.
B. the equ ivalent sound beam path B. 5.47 degrees.
d isplayed on the CRT in terms of unit C. 22.77 degrees.
distances in the test material. O. 48.50 degrees.
C. the ve locity with which the search
unit is moved across the materiaL Q.3-8 A DAC Curve is to be establi shed using
D. how electrical energy passes from the the SD Hs in the block as shown in
transducer to materi al being tested. Figure 3.10. Three points have been
establi shed: 118,2/8, and 3/8 nodes from
Q.3-4 A calibrated CRT screen is necessary for: 1/4, 1/2,314 T SO Hs. What would be the
next point?
A. measurement of signa l amplitudes to
determine distance to the reflectors. A. 4/8 node
B. measurement of electric curren ts B. 5/8 node
generated by the piezoelectric crystal. C. 6/8 node
C. measurement of d istances from the O. 8/8 node
beginn ing to the end of the scan path.
D. measurement of d istance along the
sound path to establ ish thickness or
refl ector location.

Q.3-9 Which of the follow ing is an advantage Q.3-12 A search unit wi th a foca l length in water
of side-drill ed hole reflectors for of 4 in. is used. A steel plate, 8 in. thick,
calibration? velocity = 0.230 in./ms, is placed at a
water path of 2 in. from the search unit.
A. They can be placed at essentially any At what depth is the foca l po int in the
distance from the entry surface. steel?
S. T he surface of [he ho le is rough,
providing a strong, specular A. 1.0in.
rell ection. B. 2.0 in.
C. The hole depth is li mited to 3 times e. 0.5 in.
the d iameter. D. 0.8 in.
D. The hole diameter can be used
d irectly and easily to measure the size Q. 3- 13 During an examination, an indication of
of an unknown reflector. 25 perce nt FS H is detected and
max imized. For better analysis the gain is
Q.3-10 When measuring the angle on an ang le increased by 12 dB and the indication
beam search unit using an nw block, two increases to 88 percent FS H. What va lue
signa ls are noted. The first measures at shou ld have been reac hed and what is the
an angle of 49 degrees and the second apparent problem?
peaks at an angle that is est imated to be
25 degrees. Plastic longitudinal velocity A. 50 percent FS H and the screen is
= 2.76 mm/ ms; steel shear velocity = nonlinear
3.23 nun/ms; longitudina l ve loc ity = B. 75 percent FS H and there is no
5.85 mm/ ms. Identify the signals. problem
C. 100 percent FSH and the sweep speed
A. First is shear, second is longitudinal. is nonlinear
S. First is longitud inal, second is D. 100 percent FS H and the sc reen is
surrace. nonlinear
C. First is longitud inal , second is Love
wave. Q. 3- 14 The difference between
D. First is longitudinal, second is shear. through-tran smi ss ion and pitch-catch
techniques is:
Q.3- l l When usin g a focused, straight beam
search unit for lamination scanning in an A. that the tran sducers in
immersion test of a steel plate, a change through-transmission face cach other,
in water path of 0.2 in. wi ll result in the while in pitch-catch the transducers
focal point moving in the steel a di stance are often side-by-side in the same
of: housing.
S. that the transducers in
A. 0.2 in. through-transmiss ion are
B. 0.2 m Ol. side-by-side, while in pitch-catch the
e. 0.05 in. transducers are fac ing each other.
D. 0.8 in. C. that the transducers in
through-transmission are always
angle beam.
D. that in through-transm iss ion the depth
o r the flaw is easily determined.

Q.3· 15 In the tandem tec hn ique a signal is Q.3- 19 While pe rformi ng a straight-beam ,
received frolll the test matcrial. The immers ion test , an ind ication is noted
reflector Illay be located: lying midwall . W hat immed iate act ion
should the operator take?
A. near the front surface.
S. at the back surface. A . Report it to hi s/her supervisor.
C. somew here near midwa ll. S. Chec k to e nsure that the search unit
D. by any of the above, depe nding o n to part di sta nce is correct.
the material thi ckness. the refracted C. Rcplace the component wi thin
ang le. the distance betwee n scarch anothcr iden tical one to see if the
uni ts, and the d istance between same ind icat ion ex ists in the second
transducer and the reflec tor. unit
D. Check 10 ensure the refracted angle is
Q.3·16 In a tandem 70·degree pilch-catch shear 45 degrees.
wave arrangement , the plate bein g
in spected is 2 in . thick and the regio n of Q.3-20 The refl ected pul se reaching the
interest is midway betwee n top and im mersio n transduce r from the back
bottom surfaces. How far behind the surface of a 4.5 in . al umi num plate
transmi tter shoul d the rece iving standing in a tan k of water is cqual to
transducer be located? _ _ o f the energy pulsc which was
transmitted fro m the transducer.
A. 0.68 in. (Z" = 17. Z"20 = 1.5)
B. 1.88 in.
C. 4.00 in . A. 6.22 percent
D. 5.50 in . B. 70.2 percent
C. 50.7 percen l
Q.3 -1 7 Angle beam search un its are frequently D. 14.7 percent
used in we ld testing. One reason for th is
IS that the angle beam: Q.3-2 1 A test on a thick part will be performed
using a foc used search un it with a
A. is more se nsitive to slag and poros ity. 0.50 in. long foca l zone as determined by
B. is more sensitive 10 inadeq uate the 3 dB down poi nts. To ensure
penetration an d cracks. complete coverage at uniform se.nsitivity,
C. does not attenuat e as it traverses the the operator shoul d take which of th e
material. following acti ons?
D . provides mu lt iple back-surface
echoes for thi ckness testing. A. Set the foc al ZO Il C mid way in the pari
and proceed w ith the examination.
Q.J. 18 An automated examination o f a large B. Set the foca l spot at the front surface
cy linder is to be performed usi ng a such that the di vergent beam will
focused search unit (focal poi nt = attain max imum coverage.
0.050 in . di ame ter, foc al lcngth = 2 in .. C. Set the focal zone al the back surface
and crystal d iamete r = 0.500 in.) . To because th at is the most critical area.
ensure 10 percent overl ap between scans. D. Perform multi ple examinations with
of the follow ing. what increment shou ld the metal pat h dec reased by no more
be used? than 0 .5 in . pe r examinatio n.

A. 0 .005 in .
B. 0.495 in .
C. 0.040 in .
D. 0.0495 in.

Q.3-22 A pair of squirters each with a 9 in. water Q.3-25 A major problem in the use of search unit
stream are used in the examination of a wheels is:
large panel in the through-transmission
mode. The search units are arranged in a A. insufficient traction lead ing to
horizontal position. It is desi red to locate skidding and bad wrecks.
discont inuities within 0.0 10 in. of their B. eli mination o f troublesome in terna l
true posi tion. The ana lyst should take echoes.
which of the following actions? C. installing adequate brakes.
D. selecting a rigid tire material
A. Assume that the coordinates given by
the scanning system are correct and Q.3-26 A scanning plan is a:
use those values for the coord inates.
B. Determine the curve of the Waler A. document which out lines the various
stream due to the influence of grav ity steps in preparing a procedure.
and adjust the coordinate va lues to B. document whi ch defines the most
compensate for the deflection. effic ient way to ana lyze the data.
C. Overlay the test record on the part C. documen t whi ch gives the detailed
and mark the reflector locations. steps entailed in examini ng the test
D. Precisely meas ure from the index item.
point on the panel to the indicated D. document which gives the compl ete
location and mark the part. hi story of previous examinations.

Q.3-23 In prepari ng a scanning plan (the set of Q.3-27 In contact testjng. the back surface sig nal
d irections describing the performance of fro m a 2 in. plate was set at full screen
an ultrasonic examinat io n), which of the height Pass ing ove r a coarse grai ncd
follow ing parameters should be area, the back surface signal dropped to
considered, as a minimum ? 10 percent of the full scale signal. What
wou ld be your estimate of the change in
A. sound beam diameter, refracted attenuation in this local area based on
angle, beam direction. gate settings, actual metal path dista nce?
starting point for the first scan ,
number of scans A. 20 dB/ in.
B sound beam diameter, refracted B. 10 dB/ in .
angle, operator' s name, gate settings, C. 5 dB/in.
starting point , number of scan s D. 10 percent/in.
C. sound beam diameter, refracted
angle, beam direction , expected
flaw s, instrument serial number
D. sound beam far field length, refracted
ang le, beam direction, gate seuings.
starting point. number of scans

Q.3.24 A 3 in. 'hi ck na' pla'e o r Pol YSlyrene

during im me rsion test ing exhibi ts an
echo fro m the back surface of the plate
that is of that received from the
front surface . ( Both sides immersed in
water,ZPoI =2 .7,ZIl1O . = 1.5 .)
A. 8.4 percent
B. 84.00 percent
C. 8.16 percent
D. 6.88 percent
Chapter 4
Practical Considerations
Chapter 4
Practical Considerations
Many issues of a practical nature ari se during S ignal ampli tudes arc generally relia bl e for
both routi ne and speciaJi zed ultrasonic the reseu ing of instrumentatio n, based upon
inspecti on activities. Issues o f concern include controlled calibration bl oc ks and the ir rderence
interpretation o f echo signals (as viewed on the refl ectors. But the ampli tude of the pul ses
A Scan), equipme nt adjustme nt to exped ite received fro m naturall y occ urring refl ectors has a
interpretati o ns, and set-up conditions for high level of variability depending on the
producti on inspections. refl ector's orientation and morphology, neither of
which are known in most circum stances.

Signal Interpretation Corre lations of signal ampl itudes wi th

specifi c re fl ectors are generall y recogni zed as a
valid means of establi shin g the level of sensiti vity
The interpretation of ultrason ic pul ses of an ultrasonic system. Thu s fl at-bottom ho les,
received fro m test pan renect ive surfaces can be with cross-sections smaller than the sound beams
very complex. depending upon the geometry of incident upon them and ori ented at normal
the test piece and the wave mode/scan a pproach incidence, do ex hibit sig nal responses that are
hc in g used. The most reli able measure avail able proportional to the area of the re fl ector. But
from an A Scan system is the li me of arri va l of correlati on with naturally occurring
acoll stic pul ses , due to its lack o f ambiguity di scontinui ties of irregular shape and orie ntation
when testing fine-grained . homogeneous has proven to be less th an accurate, largely due to
materi als. tn contact testing o f materials w ith an inability to sati sfy the no rmal incidence
known and constant sound wave velocities, the requ irement and to the fact that the reflect ing
time of arri va l is directly proport ional to the surfaces are rarely fl at and smooth . Where natu ral
di stance between the contact surface and the di scontinuiti es ex hibit these conditions, as w ith
refl ector. The precise time of arri val is usuall y s mall lami nations in plate material s, the area
determin ed by whe n the pul se initially de parts relatio nShi p has validity. Although the degree of
from the scree n baseline. Systems using signal-fl aw correlation at a single transducer
threshold devices to trigger del ay time monitors location is less than desired , observing changes in
can be in error, de pending upon the slope of the signal response as the transducer is moved along,
pul ses ri se time and the leve l to which the across, over, and around a suspect area can
threshold device is set. suggest if the reflector is round or flat (linear),
rough or smooth, parallel or vertical, and fill ed
The s ignal peak is less reliabl e for thi s time with materials which have a higher or lower
meas ureme nt because pul ses may spread density than that of the surrounding material.
follow in g passage through di spersive media. Table 4. 1 li sts the techniques used in making
Estimating lhe actual time the e nvelope of the these determination s.
RF signal reac hes a max imum is also a
somewhat uncert ain approach. De pending upon Finger damping is a technique where by a
which portio n of the pul se is used for trave l time moiste ned fi nger, pl aced o n the surface o f a test
measureme nt s, the estim ates of thi ckness and piece at a location where sound waves are
di stance to refl ecti ve surfaces can vary by one or present, w ill affect the wave pro pagation and will
more wavelengths. oft en be detecta bl e as sli ght changes in signal

Table 4.1. Signal Interpretation Schemes

ChBracte ristic Ac tion A Scan Response

Orientiltion (Front Surface) Rotate. Approach Maximize signal

Vertical Tr:lIIslate, Across "Walking signal"

Flatness Rot:lIe Unidirect ional

Spherical Rotate Omnidirectional

Thickness Both (many) sides Thin if one side predominates

Graphical plot

Length (large) Tr:lIIslate in major direction Drop-off at ends

Depth/width (large) Translate in minor direction Drop·off at edges

Graphical plot
Tip diffrac tion

Surface Texture
Smooth Crisp, fast rise
Rough Jagged. wide pulse

MullirefleclOf Multi·echoes

Contents RF phase reversal

ampl itudes on the CRT. Thi s technique is very establish an instrument 's sellings with respect to
effect ive in separat ing collect ions of signals, a calibration reflector or for reestab li shing
part icularl y when some of them are caused by settings from one inspection to the nex t.
spurious reflections from corners, weld crowns,
or other surfaces which are readily accessible to Ideall y, an ultrason ic system should be
the inspector. capable of detecting reneclOrs throughout the
region from the sound entry surface th roughout
the test item's en tire vo lume. However, the
Causes of Variability length of the incidel1l sound pu lse (due in part to
transducer element ringing) rcpresents a distance
within which echoes, particu larly weak ones,
There are many instrument variab les whi ch cannot be di stingui shed from the reflection
can have a signifi cant bearing on the outcome of caused by the entry surface itse lf. If short
a test and the interpretat ion of data. Horizontal duration pulses are used, i.e. , if high- frequency,
sweep extent and accuracy affect estimates of we ll -damped transducers are used, the near
time du ration from initial pul se to significant surface resolution is significant ly improved over
echoes. These are used as measures of thickness system s using long duration pulses.
("'straight beam" testing) and slant dislance
("angle beam" testing) and should ex tend over In contact testing, the ability to detect
the entire range of interest reflectors just under th e near surface is furthe r
aggravated by the "dead zone" that ex ists
Although amplitude is not a reliable indicator immed iately after the in itial electrica l pu lse. The
of a natural discontin ui ty's actual size, due to dead zone is caused by an inabil ity of saturated
variations in shape, aspect angles, tran smiss ion electrical components to respond linearl y to
properties of base material s, and othcr factors, it incoming signals as a result of their having been
is often indi cat ive of the relative size of many overdriven by the in itia l pulse. The " near-surface
common renectors and is vita l for being able to resolution"/dead zone problem can be solved by

testi ng parts from oppos ite surfaces rather than determines, to a high degree, the characteristics
from onl y one side. of the sound beam including shape. ncar-field
length, focal point (if appropriate), and refracted
Some codes and speci fi cat ions have reject angle. The transducer (with its mounting and
cri teria based on the size of the flaw. W here two backing members) also determines the pul se
re flecto rs ex ist in approximately the same plane shape, frequency, and lengt h in conjunction wit h
and are in close proxim ity to eac h other, it is the electrical exc iting pu lse and the instrument
importan t to be ab le to differentiate one from the load imposed on the crystal.
ot her. Systems with ve ry narrow beams are
capab le of sat isfyi ng thi s requirement and are Because of these factors, it is important that
said to have good lateral resolution. Lateral the proper search unit be chosen, and each search
resol ution is principall y a funct ion of the search unit characleri stic be checked against the desired
unit's beam width. Thi s factor is very important va lues on the UT in strument to be used in the
in imaging systems where clear delineation of examination . Manufacturers often provide
s mall and indi vidual fl aws is desired. cert ifi cates with the measured values deemed
important by the manufacturer. These include,
Sensitivity is a measure of the abili ty to but arc not limited to, photographs of the RF
detect small reflectors. Systems w ith high level s waveform , the frequency spectrum con tent , and
of amplification (hi gh gain) are usually systems a di stance/amp li tude characteri stic curve
wi th a high sens itivi ty. However, when the measured on a test b lock. Usuall y a value for the
ultrasoni c system is considered in its entirety. damping factor is calcu laled. Since this factor is
seve ral factors can alter the sensi ti vity that might not defined the same uni ve rsally, it may be
be expected for a g iven co mbination of desirable to determine the definitions used in the
instru ment, transducer, test material, or calcu lation. For exam pl e, definitions may be
discontinuity of interest. The important factors based on the number of cycles or half cycles
affect ing sensil ivi ty arc li sted in Table 4.2. meeting a certa in parameter, e.g., the number of
negative half cycles in a pul se greater than the
The search unit is the most important amplitude of the first negative cycle. Each of
component in the UT system. Thi s device these definitions serves the same purpose in

Tahle 4.2. System Factors Affecting Detection Sensitivity

Fllctor Comment

Transducer Conversion efficiency Coupling Coef - d}} . Sl}
Field concentrators Lenses, beam pattcrn

Amplifier Electronic amplification High linear gain . l-ligh sensitivity

Pulse Length Masks nearby reflectors Depth resolution, bener penetration

Wavelength Reflectance. directivity Smaller L - beller sensitivity,

resolution. higher noise (poly mtls)

Signal processing Gain x:::bandwidth = constant Smoothing, IiIlering, reject reduce


Nois(' sources
Random Electrical (outside, inside) Lights, welders. cranes plus circuit
cross-talk, instability

Coherent Transducer construction Cross-coupling, damping

Material surface Coupling
Material homogeneity. isotropy, Uncertainty of velocity. scatter
and geometry Geometrical reference surfaces

different ways, i.e., to describe the pulse length The presence of irrelevant signals from
and shape. geometric features is a major in spection
consideration. The most common of these is the
Test item surface condition is an important back surface echoes from pl ate material (where
variable, especially when performing con tact mul ti ple echoes are freq uently present).
tests. A rough surface affec ts the exa mination in Fortunate ly, these are easily recognized. In other
man y ways, including causin g d ifficu lty in cases, however, irrelevant echoes such as from
mov ing the search uni t across the part; causing the root of a weld, may not be easily
local variations in the entry angle resulting in differentiated from actual fl aw indications. In
scattering the beam; causing reverberations of these cases, careful analys is is required
the sound in the pockets o n the surface, resulting incorporati ng consideration of beam spread and
in a wide front surface echo wi th a resulting mode conversion as well as the normal issues of
increase in the dead zone; using excess coupl ant transit time. Changes in beam direct ion and
and making coupling difficult ; possi bly caus ing ve loc ity due to materi al conditions must be
po rtions of the examinatio n volume to be fa ctored into these analyses . Refl ec tions from
mi ssed; and causing rapid wear of contact search internal stmcturaJ features must also be
units. recogni zed and considered.

In some cases, it may be necessary to sand or

grind the scanning surface prior to the Special Issues
examinat ion in order to accompli sh the test.
Rough sand castings, some forgi ngs, and welded The largest application of UT is for fl aw
surfaces typically require rework prior to the UT detection. It is used in rece ivi ng inspection of
test. raw materi als, for in-process in spection of items
under construction, and fo r in-service
Extreme ly smooth surfaces may be d ifficult inspect ions (as part of ongoing maintenance
to test using the contact tec hnique because the programs). Although most appli cations involve
cou p Ian! may not wet the surface. This can lead metallic materials, UT is also found in the
to air be ing trapped betwee n the search unit and inspection of plastics, composi tes, concrete,
the part. Thi s pheno menon is readi ly observed lumber products, and affili ated spec ialty
when using transparent angle beam wedges. materi als.

Part confi guration (geo metry) plays an Weld Inspection

important ro le in definin g each examination 's Ultraso nics is a primary method of weld
operational parameters and practices. Geometry in spection, part icularl y when major construct ion
and access often decide the choice between projects are involved. Welds, including their heat
contact and immersion tesling; however, there affected zones, are exam ined because the
are no rules which relate the compl exi ty of shape probability of fa ilure is hi gher in these areas than
to making the choicc. Technique selection is in most base materials. Although weld metal is
governed by many things such as equipment normall y stronger than the base metal, stress
avai lability, part criticality, confi gurat ion , ri sers may occur due to we ld conto ur,
operator experience, and knowledge; a number processing, or the presence of defects. The we ld
of highl y symmetrica l parts, e.g., plates , pipe, process itself creates residu al stresses whi ch,
cones, spheres, and cy linders, lend themselves to when added to applied stresses, may cause
both immers ion and contact auto mated testing. crac king due (0 fatigue or stress corrosion .
Irreg ularl y shaped pans are onen beyond the
capability of conventional au to mated scanning Exam ination of butt welds in materials from
systems and are better left to manual about 1/4 to 15 in. thi ck are normally performed
exam inations. With the advent of computeri zed using an angle-beam, shear wave tec hnique
scanners with learning modes. the operator leads because the sound can be ori ented at near-normal
the system through o ne examination and the incidence to the critical fl aws, i.e., cracki ng,
com puter then automaticall y repeats the inadequate penetration, and fu sion. The bodies
exa min atio n. of the welds can be inspected wi tholl t removing
Figure 4.1. Angle beam geometry used in weld inspection


I· Skip Distance = 2T tan ~ -I

the weld crown. When part geometry allows, the For thi s same case, the sou nd path is given by
exam should be conducted from each side of the
weld. Refracted angles are chosen according to 2T leos ~ = 2/eos 700 = 5.85 in.
the fusion line angle, material thickness. or other
expected defect orientations. Common problems found during weld
examination involve rough surfaces (including
Figure 4.1 shows the basic geometry used for weld spatter), irregular part geometry (including
defining the angles and paths followed by sound hidden cond itions such as counter-bores in
beams when doing shear wave (angle beam) piping systems), and physical inaccessibility
testing. As shown, the sound, introduced at an (due to in sulation and being embedded in
angle which complements the geometry being reinforcing structures). During production and
examined, follows a sou nd path that often under some in-service inspections, examinations
reflects from the opposite surface, particularly may be done at elevated temperatures which can
for platelike product form s. The V -shaped path aJter the effective soun d velocity of the material,
permits inspection looking "down" into the weld transducer performance (particularly refracted
in the first leg of the Vee while the second leg is angles or critical temperature limits), and
the region used to look "up" into the weld. By operator's performance. All of these factors must
scanning the transducer toward and away from be addressed and considered in the procedure.
the weld, the sound can be made to interrogate Where irregular inner surface conditions exist,
the entire volume from two or more sets of interpretation of reflector signals is often very
angles. difficult. For example, the presence of a baCking
bar (placed at the root of the weld in order to
Analysis of signals observed on the A Scan ensure adequate penetration and fusion) tends to
display requires converting the information entrap the incident sound waves which
found along the sound path (along the Vee path) reverberate around the bar and eventually exit
into positional data related to the base material along the same path by which they entered the
and weld centerline. This is done using backing strip. Thus, strong echo signals are
conventional trigonometry to sol ve for returned to the sendi ng transducer at an apparent
eq uivalent surface distances, e.g., ski p distance, depth of sl ightly more than the thickness of the
or depths below or above the base material base material. The interpretation might be that a
surface. For example, for the I in. plate shown in large defect exists just beyond the root area of
the figure and using a 70-degree angle, the ski p the weld on the opposite side of the weld.
distance (distance from tran sducer exit point to
location at which center of sound beam reaches Another troublesome welding configuration
the top surface after reflection) is given by is introduced by the prese nce of a counter-bore
"ledge," machined or ground into the inner
2T tan ~ = 2 tan 70° = 5.5 in. radius of a pair of fitted pipes, so placed in order

Figure 4.2. Reference standard for weld inspection using notches

,--I' 11)'_~<
& :"
I ~I

"" II
/I h-
4x Minimum 4xMinirnum
I' t 'I
l. Angled notch
2. Undercut notch length per welding specification
3. Separation two times transducCl" width or 2 in.
4. Crack, LF and LP notch length two times
transducer width or 2 in. maximum
5. Hole size maximum allowable
, ' - -- 6. Hole size minimum allowable
c' ('

'- -- 7. Notch depth tIlO maximum

8. Hole depth t / 2 maximum
3 ;----3,-- ' 5 ,. ---
'- --
L ------fO 8
,.-, '- --

,:.6 '- --

that the ir initi al fit-up (gap and ali gnmen t) is penetration is permitted, ultrasoni c testing is
generally uniform. Such a geometry can give rise usually not recommended. In ot her cases, such as
to strong geometrical refl ector signals in the stai nless steel pip ing, ultrasonic inspect ion may
immediate vicinity of the weld root, an area well be success ful in the base materia l (a wrought
known for the initi ation of stress corros ion product) but not in the we ld zone (a cast
cracks in stain less steel piping systems. If the product).
angles of inspect ion and cou nter-bore arc such
that the refl ected wave is below the fi rst cri tical Immersion Testing
angle, interna l mode conversion can take place The immersion method of coupling
with a longitudinal wave travel ing in a direction ultrasound to test parts permits a wide variety of
other than that of the reflec ted shear wave. test conditions to be used without the need for
custom-des igned transducer assem blies, and with
Figure 4.2 shows the use of notches consistent coupling characteri stics, aJlow ing for
introduced in to a separate sample of the welded imaging of test parts with regular shapes, i.e.,
structural steel to serve as a mock-up for the plate, rod, cy linder, pipe, and simple forg ings,
weld inspector to accurately locate where on the and assemblies such as honeycomb panels.
CRT echo signals can be expected to appear.
The flexibility of immers ion testing is both a
Welds such as fillet welds and d iss imilar blessing and a bane in that it permits the use of a
metal we lds may requi re the app licat ion of single SCI of test equipment (transducers, mostly)
d iffere nllechniq ues in order to exa mine all to be lIsed for a large variety of inspect io n
port ions of these welds and the ir heat-affected protocols (i nspection angles, modified beam
zones. Due to the geometry of many fi ll et welds, paHerns, regulated scanning patterns, and hi gh
particu larly those in whic h incomplete sensitivity transducers), bu t it involves relative ly

expensive systems and signi ficant ly extends the mu lti ples. In thi s case, the water mu ltiples are
setup time fo r each inspection. read il y identified by displaci ng the transducer
along its longitudinal axis toward the test item.
Align ment of sound beams to test part As the transducer moves, the water mult ipl es
surfaces is expedit ed by the use of the multipl e wi ll tend to gather closer together as the
reflecti ons wh ich occ ur as a result of sound transducer approaches the test part, tending to
be ing reflected from the water-test part interface "walk th rough" the test part multiples, and
back to the transduce r face, and re-reflected back eventually piling up at the first interface signa l.
and forth between the transducer and the test
part . By monitoring these mult iple Immersion testing is used in the pu lse-ec ho
reverberat ions while angu lating the transducer mode as well as through-transmission. A
man ipulator, the presence of the largest array of variation on the through-transmission approach
mult iples ensures that the sound beam is aligned uses a fixe d beam reflector placed beyond the
perpendicular to the test part's fro nt surface and test panel and adj usted so that its echo can be
th us the sound beam is normal to the surface. In detected by the sending transducer in the
immersion testing, because of the large pulse-echo manner. Thi s de layed refl ector-pl ate
difference between the ve locities of sound in signal is indicati ve of the strength of the sound
water and metalli c part s, thi s ali gnment is cri tical beam after passi ng through the panel two times.
because sli ghtl y off-axis beams are refracted by A weak refl ector-pl ate signal (if properly
a leverage fac tor of approx imately 4: I. aligned) usuall y signi fies a material with a high
Figure 4.3 shows the presence of water multi ples level of attenuati on due to ils composition, or the
as well as the multiple echoes developed withi n presence of highly attenuating voids or scallerers
the flat steel pl ate. which may not result in a discrete back scattered
echo of their own.
The gain used in im mersion testing is rather
high, due to the large amoun t of sound energy Angle beam, shear wave testing is often
lost at lhe water-test part interfaces which are achieved by rotat ing (sw iveling or angulatin g)
often very different in acoust ic im pedance. the transducer with respect 10 the sound entry
When the transducer is rela.tive ly close to an surface. For cylindrical items, it can also be done
item with parallel surfaces, the CRT often by offsetting the transd ucer to the point where
displays an array of multi ple reverberations from the curvalUre of the test part yields a refracted
within the item, as well as from the water shear wave as shown in Figure 4.4. The

Figure 4.3. Multiple echoes found in immersion testing

Initial Pulse
Inter face Echo
Tr ansducer

Multiple 3
Echoes ] Water Standoff


Figure 4.4. Shear waves induced in tubular materials

Water "l. E

_ _ _ Tra nsducer

focused Longitudinal
Source Beam

-+-+- + --=--+-+- R

4t :: Angle of incident sound beam
o = Angle of refracted sound beam
VLW = Longitudinal velocity in water
VSM '" Shear velocity in metal
VLM = Longitudinal velocity in metal
d = distance of transducer centerline offset
from normal to cylinder outside diameter
BW :: Beam width
sin 41 = (VLWN11) sin a

curvature of the test surface results in the in troduction of flat surfaces associated with test
refraction of the sound beam in a manner that parts al so di storts the beam pattern, tending to
tends to spread the sound with the water-i tem foreshorten the foc al length due to the refraction
interface func tioning as a cylindrical lens, of the wavefro nts enteri ng the higher velocity
di verging the beam. Areas with concave metalli c parts. The foc al di stance is usually
surfaces. such as inner radiused forgings, are reduced in length equi va lent to one-fourth of
sometimes difficult to in spect because they focus what it would have been in the water without the
the sound beam into a narrow region, maki ng presence of the metallic test part. The facto r of
compl ete, uniform coverage quite difficult. one-fourth ari ses from the ratio of the
longitudinal wave acoustic veloc ities within the
It is poss ible to compen sate for some of these water and metallic, respecti vely. Figure 4.6
contoured surfaces through the use of speciall y conceptually demonstrates this effect.
designed transducers or the introductio n of
contour-correct ing lenses applied to fl at The automation of immers ion inspections
transducers. Fi gure 4.5 shows the effect of relies on the use of special circuits (gates) that
contour correction on the A Scan d isplay send control signals to recorders, alarms,
obtai ned wi th and without correction being used. transporters, and marking devices in response to
By matching the curvature of the sound beam to the presence (or absence) of special ultrasonic
the curvature of the tube, a set of well spaced echo response pul ses. By using time delay
multiple reverberation s from within the tube wall circuit s, initi ated by e ither the ini tial exc itation
is clearly ev ident. pu lse of the pul ser/rece iver units or by
reflectio ns from the front surface of the test part,
When using transducers equipped with the time of arrival of ultrasoni c echoes with
focu sing lenses for the purpose of increasi ng respect to benchmark echoes (rece ived from
flaw sensi tivity or lateral resolution, the fron t surfaces, back surfaces or other strategic

Figure 4.5. Contour correction through focused transducers

oI I "
Flat Transducer o
,, ,, ,
Contoured Transducer

-t-t-+ Thbing

refl ecting surfaces) indicates when mechani cal pos itio ning system, wear and
discontinuities are present within the test part. backlash in drive trains tend to introduce a
The use o f fron t surface gating is a very mechanical hysteresis which can affect the
effecti ve way of having the gate follow a results ex pected from C Scan recorders and other
s li ghtl y curving surface, relievi ng the need for image generating devices.
identi cal tracking of mechan ical posilioncrs and
rig id test part surfaces. The re li abl e tri ggering Production Testing
of recorders and alarm systems relieves the Immersion testing is the preferred approach
operator of continual moni toring and perm its to automated testing due to the abse nce of
other acti vities to take place while immers ion contact coupling problems, min imum
testing is progressing. deteri oration of performance due to use, and
ability to use hi gh frequency systems withom
Problems found in automatic immersion concern for fragile transducer fracture.
testing incl ude the continual maintenance of the
condition o f the water (corrosion inhibitors, As with many industrial processes, UT
an li-foulants, wetting agents) and the testing is reali zing the benefits of computer
outgassing of test parts during testing. The integration in test applications and the
outgassi ng is most troublesome due to the interpretation of resul ts. This phenomenon has
formation of bubbles on the surfaces of opened many previously inaccessible areas of
materials upon their introductio n in the water testing. Computer integration is providing
tanks. Although wiping them off removes much examin ation of complex shapes, real-time
of the problem, the bubbl es tend to continue analysis o f data with accept/reject decisions,
forming even after being submerged for different data di spl ays, signal analysis and
relative ly long periods of time. Upon test part pattern recognitio n, a hi gh degree of operator
remova l, care must be taken to thoroughly dry independence, and hi gh speed calibration .
and protect the items since they will be prone to Computer integratio n is an ex pen sive and
suffer corrosive attack. As w ith any heavy-duty time-consuming activi ty requ iring cons iderable
engi neering and development effort.

product rather than on the product itself, and is
Figure 4.6. Second lens effect of metallic used extensively in the nuclear power and
test parts when using foc used petrochemical industry. This serv ice is often
transducers performed under poor working conditions,
requiring highly qualified personnel and
Focused appropriate teChniques.
Field test ing is a conglomerate of
Lens _ f::;".... ...... = applications and lechniques used in a variety of
industries for a variety of reasons. Numerous
testing laboratories provide field testing services
and can provide quick response with qualified
Beam personne l. Ultrasonic fi eld testing is used on
pipe li nes, building construction, maintenance,
Beam Refracted with and fa ilure analysis. Field testing techn iques are
.:......_a_t_"...,Convergence many and varied, and change from day to day,
Metal ' : I depending upon the particular job at hand; hence

N~ ew P!,lIlt 0
Focus In Metal
r A' .'/.
:' •:
' .•..
Bel'ond Focus
the requirement for qualified personnel.

Field techn iques include straight (normal)

: ,
" .. beam, angle beam, and surface waves. In
Lrocal Distance construction, these are used to detect fabrication
if in Water defects in maintenance; service induced defects
and corros ion are the usual culprits. Most of this
work is manual because the appl icat ions are so
varied and job site inspect ion is requ ired.

Compuler integration into imaging processes

offers advanced data analysis capab ilities
because of its ab ili ty to visualize the size, shape ,
and locat ion of re nectors. Images can be rotated
and otherw ise man ipu lated to maxi mi ze the
information available to the analyst. Through
color or gray scale coding, amplitude and depth
information can be integrated into the di splays to
enhance the quali tati ve interpretation of the data.
Quantitative information is also available, but as
in the case of virtually all nondestructive
inspection methods, it is corre lated to material
performance on ly through infere nce and not
throu gh direct measurement. The prime
advantage to the analyst is the simultaneous
display of large amounts of both signal response
and positiona l data.

In -service Inspection
In- service inspection and maintenance naw
detect ion are used pri marily to locate
service- induced naws such as fatigue and other
load-induced cracks. In-service inspect ion is
performed on equipment used to produce the

Chapter 4 Review Questions
QA-I In a through-transmission, immersion QA-4 An immersion, pulse-echo test is
examination of an adhesively bonded lap performed on a thin adhesively bonded
joint, the signal is noted to decrease in joint between a composite material and
amplitude in a small area of less than an aluminum substrate. The sound beam
II I 6th in. diameter as recorded on a enters the joint normaJly and from the
C Scan. What condition might cause this composite side. The amp litude gate is set
indication? on the interface between the co mposite
and the aluminum. If the joint is
A. a bubble on the surface of the joint or unbonded, the sig nal shou ld:
an unbanded spot in the joint
B. the joint is tightly bonded in this area A. decrease, because water has a lower
C. there is nothing that cou ld cause this velocity than the aluminum.
conditi on - it is an anomaly 8. decrease, because water in the
D. the adhesive has melted in this area un bond will conduct sound better
causing an increase in sou nd than air.
transmissivity C. increase, because air in the un bonded
area will reflect more sound energy
QA-2 Advantages of computer controlled than the aluminum.
ultrasoni c testing include: D. increase, because the compos ite will
A. lower capital equipment costs.
B. high dependence of the test results on QA-5 Three major sources of noise which
the capability of the operator. interfere with the signal s on the CRT are:
C. real -time analysis of test results.
D. no need for instrument calibration A. front surface roughness, hydraulic
even though such action is required motors, and enlarged grain structure.
by the specification. B. back surface rough ness, electric
motors, and decreased grain structure.
Q.4-3 During the test of a fiberglass-epoxy C. depth, size and location of defect.
composite, numerous echoes are recorded D. front surface roughness, arc welding
in the pulse-echo mode. What action operations, and enlarged grain
should be taken? structure.

A. The part shou ld be rejected because QA-6 A single Vee, bun weld in a 3 in. plate is
all echoes are from flaws. being exam ined using a 60-degree shear
B. The part should be rejected because wave. An indicati on on the CRT appears
the supervisor was not there to give at a sound path distance of 9 in. At the
advice. same time the exit point of the transducer
C. The part should be accepted because is 7.8 in. from the centerline of the weld.
all composites will have numerous This suggests the reflector could be:
D. The procedure should be consulted to A. a crack in the near side HAZ.
determine the analysis technique and B. lack of fusion at the weldlbase
the acceptJrejecn::riteria. material interface.
C. a slag inclusion in the cenler of the
D. an undercut condition on the far side
of (he weld.

QA-7 Under the conditions above, but with the
ind ication at a 6 in. sound path distance Figure 4.7.
and with the exit point 5.2 in. from the
weld centerline, another strong indication
is received indicating a probable reflector
in the the we ld.

A. root area of
B. crow n area of
C. midsect ion of
D. base metal adjacent to QA-I I Under the above condition s, an L-wave is
internally mode converted at an angle
QA-8 Under the conditi ons above, but with the wi th the sin b given by:
indication at a sound path di stance of
9 in. and with the exit point 8.1 in. fro m A. sin ~ = (V/Vs) sin (i ncident angle).
the weld centerline, the refl ector lies in a B. sin 13 = (V/Vs) sin 45 degrees.
plane that is fro m the C. sin p = (VJV,) sin 90 degrees.
center of the weld. D. sin ~ = 4 si n (i nc ident angle).
A. 0. 1 in. (on the far side) QA- 12 A pipe being exami ned automatically
B. 0.3 in. (on the near side) using immersion techniques (with mode
C. 0.3 in. (on the far side) conversion to a 45-degree shear wave at
D. 0.5 in. (on the near side) the pipe wall-water interface) is
experienci ng a wobbling displacement
QA-9 Under the conditi ons above, the reflec tor (transverse to the pipe ax is) of
is at a depth of (measured ± IO percent of its nominal offset value.
from the transducer side). The corresponding change in inspection
angle would be:
A. 1.5 in.
B. 1.0 in. A. +l l ,- 14percen t.
C. 2.0 in. B. + 13, - 12 perce nt.
D. 2.25 in. C. + 10, - 10 percen t.
D. + 14, -10 percent.
QA- IO In a th ick-walled piping weld inspection ,
the counter-bore on the 10 refl ects the Q.4-1 3 During production testing, a rod is
incident 45-degree shear wave so that it passing under a transducer in a stuffing
strikes the top surface (outer diameter) at box (immersion testing). What is the
normal incidence. In order for thi s to expression that relates pu lse repetition
happen, the taper on the counterbore rates (of the UT instrument, i.e., PRR)
must be: (See Figure 4.7.) wi th the longitudin al speed of travel (Vp)
of the test part, given a transducer of
A. 30 degrees. width D?
B. 45 degrees.
C. I 1.25 degrees. A . D= VplPRR
D. 22.5 degrees. B. PRR = D xVI'
D. none of the above

Q.4- 14 An inspection specification ca ll s for three Q.4-17 A 0 degree ax ial test is bei ng performed
hits of an echo in order fo r the flaw to be o n a stee l railroad ax le 8 ft long and 6 in.
considered valid and for the alarm to in diameter. A strong but un steady signal
sound. The maximum axial speed of test is seen near the center of the CRT screen.
part movement is therefore for A similar signal is seen from the Olher
a I in. d iameter tran sducer (assume no end of the axle. The follow ing condi tions
beam spread) and a PRR of 600 pu lses are given:
per second (PPS ). Screen Distance: 10 ft ( 12 in.ldiv.),
Damping: Min imum , Gain: 85 dB ,
A. 1800 in .!s Pul se Repetit ion Rate: 2000 pu lses per
B. 600 in .!s second ,
C. 300 in.!s Frequency: 2 MHz, Range: 50 in. ,
D. 200 in .ls Reject: Off, Filter: Off,
Sweep Speed: As Req ui red,
Q.4- 15 A 1.5 in. butt weld is to be exam ined Sweep Delay: As Required
from both sides using a 70-degree shear What action should the operator take?
wave. The scan program ca ll s for be ing
able to inspect 3 legs (1.5 Vee paths). A. Record the indication and notify
Weld access fo r completing thi s pattern supervisor.
wi ll requ ire ± plus the B. Change Ihe PRR 10 1000 pu lses per
physical dimen sions of the tran sducer second and observe the effect.
assembly. C. Compare the signal to the reference
standard and reject the ax le if the
A. 4.50 in. reference level is exceeded.
B. 8.24 in. D. Determine if the signal respond s to
C. 12.36 in . finger damping by touching the
D. 24.73 in . opposite end.

QA-16 The sou nd path sweep setting on the LO Q.4-1 8A 10 ft long turbi ne shaft is to be
Division CRT for the above case should inspected from one end wi th 0 degree,
bc: longitudinal wave for radial ,
circumferential fatigue cracks in an area
A. 1.35 in.ldiv. between 90 and 110 in. from the
B. 1.00 in.!div. inspection end. The available instrument
C. 1.25 in .ldiv. screen can di splay a maximum of 80 in.
D. 0.50 in .!di v. How should the operator proceed?

A. Give up .
B. Sct up 20 in. sc reen and delay the
start to 90 in .
C. Sct up an 80 in. screen and delay the
start to 30 in.
D. Assume there arc no cracks and turn
in a report.

Chapter 5
Codes and Standards
Chapter 5
Codes and Standards
Every ultrasoni c examination should be decided between buyer and service organization.
governed by one or more procedures that are In thi s way, the actual procedures to be followed
structured to compl y wi th the rules and criteri a are left up to the senio r technical personnel who
of applicabl e codes, standards, and/or mu st agree upo n an appropriate set of acceptance
speci fi cations. S impl e maintenance tasks such as criteria and related operatio nal iss ues.
thickness measurement for corTOsion detectio n
may not be governed by any regulatio n, but a In the ASME Code, o ne sect ion of the Code
spec iri c procedure should still be fo llowed in (Sect ion V) serves the same purpose as the
order to ensure the gathering of valid and ASTM standards and even uses some of them as
accurate data. the technical basis for ultrasonic acti vities.
Because the Code addresses several levels of
component crit icality, however, acceptance
Typical Approaches criteria, requiremen ts fo r perso nnel certificat ion,
and definit ion of what will be in spected are
Ultrasonic examinations in a criti cal or reserved for other sections, namely the
well- regulated indu stry are often covered by product-speci fi c referenc ing sect ions. For
multiple doc umen ts. For example, the nuclear example, Sections 11J (for new Nucl ear
power generation industry uses proced ures construction), VIII (for new Pressure Vessels
written in accordance with the American Society construction) and XI (for Nuclear In-service
of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Code. The in spection) defin e the acceptance criteria and
Code, in rurn, is supported by publi shed personnel certification iss ues completely
applicab le American Society of Testing and separate from Section V, Nondestructive
Matcrials (ASTM) Standards. Somet imes these Examination. In order to adequately address the
are aug mented by company, customer, or ultrasoni c in spection requirements in this case,
Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) all applicable sections o f the Code, including {he
Regulatory Guides, i. e., supplemental detai led supplemental Code Cases that clarify spec ific
speci fi cat ions. In order to mcctthc intent of issues, must be considered when operating
these documents as well as their obvious stated procedures are being prepared to meet thi s
requirements, the Level In must be able to well -known code.
understand t.he point of view that led to the
statements within the document s and be able to In the above cases, a fai r amount of latitude
ensure an employer that ultrasonic inspection is g iven the user of the codes and standards in
activities, documented in straightforward regard to the detaiJ s of assessing whether an ite m
procedures, are in compliance with the entire is acceptable or not. The American Welding
spectnlm of applicable codes and standards. Society (AWS) Structu ral Welding Code (used
in building, bridge, and o il rig inspection) is far
TIlC manner in which requirements are stated more prescriptive in the manner by which
in codes and standards varies from document to transducers shall be selected , in which region s of
document. Some, such as the ASTM standards, specific welds they are to be used, what
tend [0 emphasize the manner by which compensation for attenuation and beam spread
inspection activities are to be conducted, but are to be used in analyzing in spectio n results,
leaves the issue of acceptance criteria to be and how welds shaH be laid ou t and marked.

Table 5.1. Typical Code and Standard Requirements

Issue Approac h es Examples

Transduce r selection Ranges (size and angle) ... transducers betwt!en 40 & 80 degrees
Prescribed angles ... transducers of 45, 60, 70 degrees
Angles for each case .. .45° in mid-section, 70° near surface

Scan t echniques General coverage ... scan in two orthogonal direction

Intervals ... use 9-inch centers for grid
Overlap ... overlap each pass by 10% of active area
Scanning levels ... scan sensitivity to be 6 db above ref
Rates ... maximum scan rate of6 inches per sec.

Calibration Instrument ... vertical, horjzontallinearity

Transducers ... beam location (IHV), depth resolution,
response from SDH, F8H, notch
Distance correction schedule ... set DAC at 80% FSH, electronic 1;I:lIiIl8$
... recalibrate at start, sh ift, changes

Special proble ms Component curvature Use fig X.f to correct for curved items
Transfer Use dual tronsduL-ers to :.-et transfer

Reporting Formats/forms Form xyz to be used in recording data

Analysis Classification ofre/Zector found by ..
Authorizations All reports signed by Levell! & III

Accep tun ce criteria General types Reject all crocks and lack of fusion
Dimensions Reje<:t slag over 3 / 4 in 2" plate

Collections Reject pore spacing of 3 within 2"

Personne l cer tification Per undefined procedure Supplier to have certification program
Per SNT-TC-IA Written practice to SN7'-7'C-IA, 1988
Per MIL-STD-41O Procedure per ....
or 250-1500

Records of e xamination List of documentation Final documentation shall include ... .

Retention period Supplier to retain records for 5 years

In a sim il ar vei n, many military standards, unit type, size, frequency (wave geomcLry),
because of their hi ghl y restricted appl ications (4) screen settings (metal path), (5) area to be
to certain component s and con fi gurati ons, tend scanned (coverage inten sity), (6) scanning
to establish more structured approaches to techn iqlle (manual/coupl inglautomat ic),
specific confi gurations of test parts and require (7) indicat ions to be recorded (minimum
inspection personnel to use these customized sensit iv ity) , (8) data record fo rmat (form s to be
approaches in conduct ing ultrason ic fo llowed), (9) accept/reject criteria (bas is or
inspections. specification reference), and ( 10) person nel
quali fication s (cert ifications). The degree to
Table 5.1 li sts several of the typical items which these and other item s are controlled is
included in codes and standards which need to usuall y dependent upon the cri ticali ty of the
be addressed as clements of the manner in appl ication.
which ultrasonic in spect ion procedures are to
be carried out. For example, an ult rasonic
procedure, as ciled in some requirements must Summaries of Requirements
address the fo ll owing items: (I ) instrument
(selection, operating ranges), (2) calibration Excerpts of contem porary specifications,
standard (tie- in to test material s), (3) search taken from both commercial and military

pract ice, are displayed on the fo ll owing pages in
order to gain an overview of thei r typical
conten ts and to be used as source materi als for
questi ons li sted at the end of thi s section. They
are not complete in their coverage and should
not be considered a surrogate for the original
issues of these documents.

(American Society for Testing and Materials)

ASTM standard s are largely structured to Longitudinal Beam Ultrasonic lnspection of

defi ne the basic operations which are to be done Carbon and Low-all oy Steel Castings." It has
in conductin g nondestructive inspections in an defined a syste m of reference blocks using
orderly and technically sound manner and often nat-bottom holes, whi ch can be used as the
wi th regard to specific materials. However, basis for developing distance-amplitude
because they are intended to be used in many corrections and establishing a reference
different si tuati ons, the details of operational sensiti vity for straight beam in spection systems
practices are often left to supplemental to be used on cast steel components. It further
contract uaJ agreements between buyer and seller defines conditions under which inspections are
of the inspect ion services. Thu s, some of the to take place (material conditions, scan rates,
requiremen ts of these standards tend to serve as DAC [ARL] development, reporting
recommendat ions for specific actions or requiremen ts), but it does not give specific
candidates for requirements; if not, alternates are information regarding recalibration intervals,
agreed to by the buying and selling part icipants. quality levels, or personnel certificatio n. These
are, in large part, left up to the buyer to incl ude
O n the following page is an excerpt from as supplemental requi rements.
ASTM A 609, "Standard Specification for

(Excerpts Taken from ASTM A 609*)
Standard Specijicationjor Longitudinal Beam Ultrasonic Inspection
oj Carbon and Low-Alloy Steel Castings
1. Scope reflection from block and casting in same
1.1 This specification covers the standards and thickness, conditions.
procedures for the pulse-echo ultrasonic 7 .4 ...Attenuator only control that can be changed
inspection of heat-treated carbon and low-alloy during inspection. Signals may be increased for
sleel casting by the longitudinal·beam technique. visibility but retumed to base level for signal
evaluation. Calibration rechecked periodically
2. Basis of Purchase using transfer block as basic reflector.
2.1 When this specification is to be applied to an 7.5 ... Regions having parallel walls and exhibiting loss
inquiry. contract, or order, the purchaser shall of back reflection shall be rechecked and treated
fumish the following information: as questionable until the cause(s) is resolved
2.1.1 Quality levels for the entire casting or using other techniques.
portions thereof.
2.1.2 Sections of castings requiring inspection, 8. Data Reporting
and 8.1 ... Total number, location, amplitude and area of all
2.1 .3 Any additional requirements to the indications equal 10 or greater than 100 percent
provisions of this specificaUon. ARL, questionable areas (7.5), testing parameters
and sketch showing uninspected areas and
3. Equipment location and sizes of reportable indications.
3.1 Electronic Apparatus:
.. .Pulse-echo, 1-5 MHz, linear ± 5% for 75% of 9. Acceptance Standards
screen height. 9.1 ... Criteria for individual castings should be based
3.2 Transducers: on a realistic appraisal of service requ irements
... L-wave, 1-1 1/8 dia, 1 in. square; prefer 1 MHz and the quality that can normally be obtained in
beyond 2 in. depth. production of the particular type of casting.
3.3 Reference Blocks: 9.2 Acceptance quality levels shall be established
... FBH, # 16, DAC - 1-10 in ., cast materials that between purchaser and manufacturer on the basis
have a metallurgical structure similar to the of one or more of the following criteria.
castings being inspected. Other blocks may be 9.2. 1 No indication equal to or greater than that
used provided they are proven to be acoustically specified in one 01 the quality levels listed
equivalent to the cast steel. The hole bottom shall in Table XI, or
be cleaned and plugged. Each block identified. 9.2.2 No questionable areas trom paragraph 7 .5,
Block specifications: 32 ons, flaVparaliello within unless proven acceptable by other means.
0 .00 1 in., hole diameter 1/4 ± 0.002 in., 9.3 Other means may be used to establish the validity
perpendicular within 30 min. of a rejection based on ultrasonic inspection.

4. Personnel Requirements Table Xl Rejection Level

4.1 The seller shall be responsible for assigning
qualified personneL .. , a qualification record shall
be available upon request. Quality Arca
Level inch2
5. Casting Conditions
5. t Heat treat before UT. 1 0.8
5.2 Surfaces shall be free of interference. 2 1.5
3 3
6. Test Conditions
4 5
6.1 Each pass of transducer to overlap.
6.2 Rate less than 6 in i s. 5 8
6 12
7. Procedure 7 16
7.1 Adjust sweep to put back wall at least halfway Notes:
across the CRT.
Table XI applies to signals above the 100% ARL line.
7.2 ... Mar1<. the FBH indication height for each of the
applicable blocks on the CRT screen. Draw line
1. The areas refer to casting surface area over which
through indication mar1<.s. Set peak at 314 screen
a continuous indication exceeding ARL exists.
height. This is the amplitude reference line (ARl).
2. Beam spread and curvature must be considered
7.3 ... Use transfer mechanism to compensate for where long distances and curved castings are
surface roughness differences. Use back wall

*Ex tracted. with pcnnission. rrom t he Annual Book or ASTM Standards, copyright American Society ror
Testing and Materials, 19 16 Race Street. Philadelphia. PA 19 103.

(American Society of Mechanical Engineers)

ASME has structured its nondestructive Section V, "Nondestructive Examination," as

testing requirements as part of the Boiler and well as very brief examples of how the
Pressure Vessel Code. This comprehensive set referencing sections of the Boiler and Pressure
of rules defines the allowable design practices, Vessel Code are used for the introduction of
materials, construction practices, examination specific requirements. An example of ultrasonic
approaches, and documentation needed to ensure testing of ferritic cast materials was chosen to
consistent construction of new boilers, pressure compare the ASTM spec ification and the
vessels, and ancillary components including modified set of requirements of Sections III
piping systems, containment systems, and and V.
support systems. The Code is subdi vided into
section s devoted to specific classes of The important area of weld inspection is
components (pressure vessels, boilers, piping) included to highlight the use of special purpose
and supporting technologies (welding, calibration blocks (as opposed to commercially
nondestructive examination, materials). Thus available standard cal ibration blocks, i.e. , the
items "constructed in accordance with the Code" IIW block) and to describe methods of verifying
often must satisfy a multillide of requirements. instrument linearity and accommodating test part
The following pages include brief excerpts from curvatures.

(Excerpts Taken from ASME Boiler
and Pressure Vessel Code*)
Section V (Nondestructive Examination)
Article 5 - Ultrasonic Examination Methods fo r Materials and Fabrication
T·510 SCOPE S-Wave - per Figure plus other holes, notches for
This Article describes or references requirements which reference.
are 10 be used in selecting and developing ultrasonic Method - Straight Beam per SA-609 exclusive of
examination procedures for welds, parts, components, paragraph 7.3 (transfer method).
materials and thickness determinations. This Article - Angle Beam 80% peak, SOH OAC curve from
contains all of the basic technical and methodological bk>ck
requirements for ultrasonic examination. When examina-
tion to any part of this Article is a requirements of a T-541.4.3 Examination.
referencing Code Section, the referencing Code Section per SA-609 plus ..
shall be consulted for specific requirements for the follow-
Ing. (a) A supplementary angle beam examination shall be
performed on castings or areas of castings where a back
Personnel Qualification/Certifications reflection cannot be maintained during the straight beam
Procedure Requirements andlor Techniques examination, or where the angle between the front and
Examination System Characteristics back surfaces of the castings exceeds 15 deg.
Retention and Control of Calibration Blocks
Acceptance Standards for Evaluation (b) The requirements for extent of examination and
Extent and Retention of Records acceptance criteria shall be as required by the referencing
Report Requirements Code Section.
Extent of Examination andlor Volume to be Scanned

T-S22 Written Procedure Requirements NB·2574 Ultrasonic Examination of Ferrltlc

Ultrasonic examination shall be performed in accor-
Steel Castings
dance with a written procedure. Each procedure shall
Include at least the following information, as applicable.
(a) , (b), (0), .. . (I), (m) , (n), (0)
Ultrasonic examination shall be performed in
T-S23.1 Examination Coverage accordance with T-54 1.4 of Article 5 of Section V.
10% overlap of piezoelectric element
Rate SS inls unless calibrated elsewise
NB-2574_1 Acceptance Stds,
T·S30 EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES (a) The Quality Levels 01 SA-609 shall apply per
Frequency' (1·5 MHz) (1) Levell , T<2 in .
Screen Linearity - ± 5 % in 20-80% range (2) Level 3, 2!>T:S4 in.
Control Linearity - ± 20% amplitude ratio
Check Calib. at beginning, end, personnel change, (3) Level 4, T>4 in.
suspected malfunction (b) Supplemental Requirements
Linearity methodology prescribed . (1) Length vs. Level
Levell, 1.5 in.
Level 2, 2.0 in.
T· 541 Materi al Product Fo rms
Plate , Forgings-Bars, Tubular Products Level 3, 3.0 in.
Level 4, 3.0 in.
T -541 .4 Castings. When ultrasonic examination of ferritic (2) Q Levell applies to first inch of any volume
castings is required by the referencing Code Section, all of material.
sections, regardless of thickness, shall examined in
accordance with SA-609; supplemented by T-Sl0, T-S20,
(3) Measured change in depth up to lesser of
as well as T-541.4.1 , T-541.4.2 and T-S41.4.3 one-half wall or 1 in .
(4) Two or more indications in the same plane,
T-S41 .4.1 Equipment Transducer: 1-11/8dia, I in2t separation<longest dimenSion, within (b)( l ).
MHz, others allowed if sensitivity o.k. (5) Two or more indications greater than next
T-541.4.2 Calibration
higher Q-Ievel permits.
Blocks - same material specification, grade, product
Excerpts from Section /If (Nuclear Construction), a
form, heat treatment, and thickness ± 25%. Surface
representative. sample of a referencing Gode section.
l-Wave - per SA-609

* Extracted, with pennission, from the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, co pyright American Socicty
of Mechanical Engineers, 345 E.'lst 47th Sucet, New York , NY 100 17.

T-541.5 Bolting Material T-580 EVALUATION
With DAC, any reflector wh ich causes an indication in
T-542 Welds excess of 20% of OAC to be investigated to criteria of
Requirements for UT of full penetration welds in referencing Code.
wrought and cast materials including detection, location,
and evaluation of reflectors within the weld, heat affected T·590 REPORTS AND RECORDS
zone , and adjacent material. Covers ferritic products and A report shall be made indicating welds examined ,
pipe. Austenitic and high nickel alloy welds covered in locations of recorded reflectors with operator 10. Records
T-542.8.5 of calibrations (instrument, system, cal block ID) shall also
be included.
T-542.2 Calibration
Basic Calibration Block
Material - Same product form and material specification
or equivalent P-Number grouping. P-Nos. 1, 3, 4, and 5
are considered equivalent for UT. Test with Straight
Clad - Same welding procedure as the production part. EXAMINATION OF WELDED JOINTS
Surface representative.
Heat Treatment - At least minimum tempering treatment Ultrasonic examination of welded jOints when
of material spec for the type and grade and postweld HT required or permitted by other paragraphs of this
of at least 2 hr.
Division shall be performed in accordance w ith
Geometry - see Figure 5.2
Curvature - >20 in. dia, considered flat Appendix 12...
- <20 in. dia, see Figure 5.1
System Calibration Appendix 12 ULTRASONIC EXAMINATION OF
Angle Beam (Ref: Article 4, Appendix B) WELDED JOINTS
(a) sweep range - 10% or 5% full sweep
(b) distance-amplitude correction - 20"lol2dB 12-1 SCOPE
(c) position This Appendix describes methods which shall
(d) echo from surface notch be employed when UT of welds is specified in this
Straight Beam (Ref: Article 4, Appendix C) Division . Article 5 of Section V shall be applied
(a) sweep range - 10% or 5% full sweep for detailed requirements. A certified w ritten
(b) distance-amplitude correction - 20°/o/2dB procedure is required.


(a) change of system component SNT-TC-1A
(b) before, end of examination (series), each 4 hrs, and
at personnel change . 12-3 ACCEPTANCE-REJECTION STANDARDS
All indications over 20% DAC shall be investi·
T-542.6 Welds in Cast Ferritic Products...
gated to determine shape, identity, and location .
Nominal frequency is 2.25 MHz, unless material Rejection criteria:
requires the use of other frequencies. Angle selected as (a) interpretations of crack, lack of fu sion or
appropriate for configuration. DAC not required in first one-
half vee path in material less than 1 in. thick. incomplete penetration, regardless of
T-542. 7 Examination of Welds (b) liner type reflectors exceeding the refer-
Base Metal - Free of surface irregularities. ence level and the length exceeds
- Scan with L-wave for laminations at 2X (1) 1/4 in . for T <3/4 in.
sensitivity. (2) T/3 in . for 3/4:SrS2 1/4 in.
Longitudinal Reflectors - Manipulate, rotate, perpendicu- (3) 3/4 in. for T>2 1/4 in.
lar to weld axis at 2X sensitivity over reference level. If the weld joins two members having different
Transverse Reflectors - Manipulate along weld at 2X thicknesses at the weld, T is the thinner of these
from both directions.
two thicknesses.
r-542.7.2.5 Evaluation
An indication in excess of 20% OAC shall be investigated 12-4 REPORT OF EXAMINATION
to the extent that it can be evaluated in terms of the Retain report for 5 years . Include re qu ired
acceptance standards of the referencing Code Section. entries from Section V plus a record of repaired
areas and a record of all reflections from uncor·
T-542.8.5 Austenitic and High Nickel Alloy Welds rected areas having responses that exceed 50%
Ultrasonic examination is more difficult than in territic of the reference level including location, response
materials due to variations in acoustic properties of level , dimensions, depth below surface and
austenitic and high nickel alloy welds, even those in alloys
classification .
of the same composition, product form, and heat treatment.
It may, therefore, be necessary to modify andlor supple-
ment the provisions of th is Article in accordance with T- (Excerpts from Section VIII (Pressure Vessels)
110(c) when examining such welds .

Figure 5.1. Basic calibration block
2 in. long to 1/4 in. diameter nat end;
millllotches 2% T deep
• Through Clad
,/ ,', t Thickness 2% T
Deep into the
,,-_2_;n_'_7''--_ +________,,::;::? t Base Metal
3 in. [Note (l)J I
/. ,,;/ )------
T/4 p'''f-- Clad [Note (4)]
,'/ ','

6 in. [Note (I)]

1- 1/2 in. Minimum _I Drilled and reamed hOles r-Tj:'" Tl2 fNote (\)]
3 in. Deep [Note (I) I

8a<i< C.tib .... _

W,14 Tbk ~ ..... (tl 810<11. TbKli.naS!D
Dj;upclrr (:s.... ( J l(
0. .. 2 'ft. _ah ~ ,n. lin .... ' JJI6 ...
0. ... 4 ift. lhrouall 6 in. 'in.'" 1/4;n.
0. ... 6 ,n. ''''''''all 8 (n. 7;" ... , 5116 ;ft_
0.,<.8 ,n. ,tItousJI10 in. 'Ii.... ' :Win
Ove. to in. throusJI t2;". II;".... ' 7/16 "'_
0.", t2 in. throusJI t4;". )] in. 01" In ift
Over t4 in. (Nooc(211 IN"" (1)J
(\) Minimum Dimensions.
(2) For euch increase in thickness of2 in. or fraction thereof. the hole diameter shall increase 1/ 16 in.
(3) The tolerances for the hoic diameters shall be ± 1I)2 in.; tolerances on notch depth shall be +iO and -20%; tolerance or hole location through
the thickness shall be ± IIS; perpendicular tolerance on notch reflccting surface shall be ±2 deg.
(4) Clad shall OOt be inc luded in T.

T-593 Examination Records

(a), (b), (c), ... (k), (I), (m) lists information 10 be included
such as procedures, equipment, personnel, and map of

Appendi x I - Screen Height Linearity

Figure 5.2, Ratio limits for curved
Get dual signal on screen with amplitude ratio of 2:1, surfaces
with the larger set at 80% FSH. Adjust gain to succes-
sively set the larger indication from 100% to 20%, in 10%
increments (2dB steps) and read smaller indication at each
selling. Reading must be 50% of the larger, within 5%
FSH. "il
Appendi x II - Amplitude Controt Linearity
Get single signal on screen and change gain sellings in ~""'1----"i D .)
accordance with table. The indication must fall within the
specified limits. Sellings and readings are to be estimated
to the nearest 1% of full screen.

----. -- 8
Origina l Limits Change in Gain Indication
Setting Control - ,,,--:1-f-:-,-=", 4.8
(%FSH ) (dB) (%FSH)
u 1.7
·6 dB
-12 dB
~ __~--~-~-------~,~--~ l
5 10 15 20
'" 0
40% +6 dB 64-96% E xamination Surface Diameter, In.
20% +12dB 64-90%

Military Standards

Military standards tend to use hi ghl y spec ific rolled bars, extruded or rolled shapes, and parts
instructions as part of their req uirements, made from them. It does not address
incl uding the design and use of ca li bration no n-metals, welds, casti ngs or sandwich
blocks, methods of system performance analysis, structures.
and other operating instructions. Included below
are excerpts from MIL-STD-2154 which is It addresses both immersion (type J) and
intended to standardize the process for applying contact (type II) methods of inspection of
ultrasonic inspection in the evalu ation of wrought aluminum (7075-T6, 2024), magnesium
wrought metals and their products greater than (ZK60A), titanium (Ti-6A I-4V annealed) and
0.25 in. thick. It is applicable to the in spection low alloy steel products (4130, 4330, 4340),
of forgings, rolled billets or plate, extruded or using five classes of acceptance.

(Excerpts Taken from MIL-STD-2154)
!nspeclion, Ullrason ic, Wrollghl Metals,

1. SCOPE Water path ± 1/4 in. of standardization,

Detection of flaws in wrought metals having cross maximize water-metal interface signal, develop DAC if
section thickness equal to 0.25 In. or greater. needed, angle transducer 23 0 ± 4 to get S-wave from
45-70 degrees in aluminum, steel and Ti. Set primary
4. GENERAL REQUIREMENTS reference response a180% FSH. Set scan index at
Orders shall specify type of inspection and quality between 50 and 80% of the half-amplitude response
class in drawings including identification of directions of distance from reference standard. Establish for each
maximum stresses. transducer used. Establish transfer factor using
Personnel shall be Level II or better, Mll-STD-410. 4 points from differenllocalions based on back surface
Levell Special permitted per 410. reflections or notches, but only if the response is more
Detailed procedure to be prepared for each part and or less than the comparable Signal from the reference
type of inspection. It shall cover all of the specific standard, allowable range between 60 and
information required to set-up and perform the test, i.e. , (a) , 160 percenl Of ± 4 dB.
(b), (e). " (0), (p), (q) ,
Acceptance Criteria
5. DETAIL REQUIREMENTS Discootinuities are evaluated with gain sel for 80%
5.1 Malerials. FSH on a test block with hole diameter aquallo the
Couplants smallest acceptable for the applicable class and wilh a
- Immersion (Type I), free of visible air bubbles, melal Iravel distance aqualto the reflector depth within
use preapproved additives i.e. inhibitors, wetting - ±10%.
- Contact (Type II) , viscosity and surtace Acceptance Criteria Matrix
wetling sufficient to maintain good energy
Standard Test Block Materials - listed alloys Quality
or from the same alloy as the part, free from spurious a... Single Multiple LlMlir
indications. To be tested to class AA using Immersion, ( U -n1l) (II FBII) · (ind ,)
AAA 118
5.2 Equipment.
Frequency: 2 .25 - 10 MHz, Ref: ASTM E317 AA "
"".. "" 10% lli

. "" ----- I
Gain : ± 5% FSH over full range
B , I
Alarm: Front surtace synchronization
C ---NfA----------·
- L-wave, 3/8 - 3/4 in. dia.
- S-wave, 1/4 - 1 in. dia. or length " 'Y'wo or more less than I ,n. apart .
- Angular adjustment - ± 1 degree
- Linear accuracy - ± 0 .1 in.
5.3 Reference standards. For L-wave inspections, loss of back reflection
Flat surface - #2,3,5,8 FBH per E-127 exceeding 50 percent shall be cause for rejection unless
Curved surtace - R < 4 in., special block due to non-parallelism or surface roughness.
Angle Beam - IIW, for transducer exit/angle Linear discontinuity length is measured using the 50%
SDH block, rectangular beam hollow drop method .
cylinder block, pipes
Verification - drawings/radiographs, comparison 5.5 Quality assurance provisions.
amplitude plots, linearity plots, surface finish, System performance to be checked prior to, at 2 hour
maleriat certs. intervals during continuous testing , at instrument setting
5.4 Inspection procedures. changes or modules, and after testing. DAC setups are to
Scan parallel to grain flow up to speeds that be checked daily for the thickness range 01 material being
found reflectors in base materials and at inspected.
reference amplitude, angulale to maximize, Data records shall be kept on file in accordance with
check high stress regions contractlorder. Location and general shape (size) 01
Near surface resolution limit for 2: 1 SIN rejectable indications are to be recorded. Indications in
- 1/8 in. for 1 in. range thru excess of acceptance criteria are permitted if they will be
t /2 in. for 15 in . range subsequently removed by machining. A C Scan shall be
failure = test from both sides made that shows the location and size (by discontinuity
Immersion - grade) with respect to the material being scanned.

Building Codes

Nondestructive testing requirements are severity class is determined by the degree to

ofte n melded into the detailed requirements which the flaw indication exceeds the reference
associated with the construction of welded level, as modified by sound path attenuation , and
structures stressed with static loads (buildings), the weld thickness and search unit an gle. The
dynamic loads (bridges), or tubular structures. classes and reject criteria are as following:
Different sets of acceptance criteria are used Class A (large) - All are rejectable
based on the intended purpose of the structure. Class B (medium) - Reject if longer than
The base metals involved are mostly carbon and 3/4 in.
low alloy steels, commonl y found in the C lass C (small) - Reject if longer than 2 in.
fabrication of steel structures. C lass D (minor) - All are acceptab le

The wording and approaches included on the The presence of more than one class in close
next pages use typi cal criteria based upon static proximity are addressed in special notes, as are
loads. Included are those for scanning levels the trealment of primary tensi le stress weld s and
(which change with sound path) and bases for eleclroslag welds.
rejection depending upon flaw class. The flaw

(Excerpts Taken from a
Representative Building Code)
1. INSPECTION Transducers
L-wave, 1/2 S Area ~ 1 in2
Personnel Qualification 2-2.5 MHz
resolve #3-hole
Personnel pertorming nondestructive testing other than S-wave, (518-1) x (518-13/16)
visual shall be qualified in accordance with the current ralio:l .2: 1
edition of the American Society for Nondestructive Testing angle: ± 2 degrees (70, 60, 45)
Recommended Practice No. SNT-TC-1A. Only individuals clearance: 1 in.
qualified for NDT Levell and working under the NOT Reference Standards
Level II or individuals qualified for NOT Level II may IIW Block + portables
perform nondestructive testing. Resolution Block
Qualification Frequency
Extent of Testing Horiz lin - 40 hrs.
Information furnished to the bidders shall clearly identify Gain· two months
the extent of nondestructive testing (types, categories, or Probe Noise - 40 hrs.
location) of welds to be tested. Shoes & Angles - 8 hrs.

6.18 Calibration for Testing

Prior to test at location
General 30 Minute inlervals
The procedures and standards described below are to Changes in personnel , equipment or electrical
be used in the ultrasonic lesting of groove welds and heat- disturbances
affected zones between the thicknesses of 5/16 in. Zero Reference Level
(B.O mm) and 8 in. (203 mm) inclusive, when such testing Gain setting @ 80% FSH from 0.06 in. SOH
is required. These procedures and standards are not to be
used for testing tube-to-tube connections. Testing Procedures
Positional Layout X, Y
Variation in lesting procedure, equipment, and accep- Surface condition clear
tance standards may be used upon agreement with the Lamination check- L-wave
Ali bult joint welds shall be tested from each side of the
Ultrasonic Equipment weld axis .. ., It is intended that, as a minimum. ali welds be
1-6 MHz, Pulse-Echo tested by passing sound through the entire volume of the
Horizontal linearity- 2% weld and the heat-affected zone in two crossing directions,
Stability - ±1 dB for 15% voltage change wherever practicaL
Gain - 60 dB, ±1 dB

Ta ble B-l Ultrasonic Acceptance-Rej ection Criteria (St atic)

Weld Thickness· in in. (mm ) and Search Unit Angle
Discontinuity 5116(8) >31'
Severity thru thru >1·1/2 thru 2·112(64 ) >2-112 thru 4(100 ) >4 thru 8(200)
Class 314(19} 1-112(38)

70· 700 700 6fY' ". 700 6fY' ". 70· 60· ".
Class A .5& .2& -2& .3& -5& -2& -7 &

0& -4 & -1 &
.1 &
lower lower lower lower lower lower lower lower lower lower

Class B •• .3 -1 .2 ., -,-3 -1 .1 - -3 0
0 .3 .5 0 .2 -5 -2 .1

Class C .7 ., .1 ., •• -2 <0 .1 .3 -'<0 -1<0 .2

.2 .5 .7 .2 .2 .4 .2 .2 .3

Class D . 8& +5 & .3& •• & .8& .3& .3& .5& .3& .3& ., &
"P "P "P "P "P "P "P "P "P "P "P

Evaluation - Set signal from indication at 80% FSH. Notes:
Difference between "Indication Lever setting and ~Zero 1. Where possible, all examinations shall be made in Leg I
Reference Level" setting is measure of severity. For sound unless otherwise specified. Examinations in Leg II or III
paths over 1 in., attenuation compensation (2 dB/in. over shall be made only to satisfy provisions of this table or
1 in.) is used. when necessary 10 lesl weld areas made inaccessible by
an unground weld surface, or interference with other
"Indication Rating" = portions of the weldmen!.
Indication Level - Zero Reference Level - Attenuation
2. Whenever indications occur at the weld metallbase
Each weld discontinuity shall be accepted or rejected on metal interface, they shall be further evaluated with 45 , 60,
the basis of its indication rating and its length. or 70 degree transducers, whichever sound path is nearest
10 being perpendicular to the suspected fusion surface.

3. B is the malerial surface opposite to the surface from

which the initial scanning is done.
4. Al ternative angles permitted if flush Ref. 6.19.5 .2.

Table B-2 Scanning Levels

Sound pa th** in inc h es (mm) Abo ve Ze r o Refer e n ce,
th rough 2-1/2 (64mm) 14
>2-1/2 through 5 (64-127 mm) 19
>5 th rough 10 (127-254 mm ) 29
>10 through 15 (254-381 mm) 39
" This column refers to sound path dista nce; NOT mate ri a l t hi ck ness

Table B-3 Procedure Lege nd

Thickness Top Middle B ottom Procedure
(inches) Quarter H a lf Quarter Numbe r

5/16 to 1-3/4 70" 70" 70" # 1

1-3/4 to 2-1/2 60" 70" 70" # 4
2-112 t o 3-112 45" 70" 70" # 5
3-112 to 4-1/2 6O"B 70" 60" # 7
4-112 to 5 6O"B 60" 60" #10
5 to 6-L'2 45"B 70" 45" #11
6-112 to 7 45°B 45" 45" #13

Chapter 5 Review Questions
Q.5~ I A governing specifi cation calls for shear Q.5-4 A set of curves of amplitude versus area
wave, angle beam examination of the were developed for examination o f a
component. What angle should be used? steel forging. A refl ector was found
which was determined to be larger in
A. 45 degrees when inspecting a thi ck, ex tent than the sound beam diameter.
45 -degree preparation weldmcnt. Which criterion, of those given below,
B. 60 degrees when inspecting a I in. shou ld be used to size the refl ector?
thi ck weldment.
C. Both A and B. A. Directly compare the amplitudes and
D. The angle(s) permitted by procedure select the size giving the same
qualifi cation. amplitude.
S. Multiply the reflector amplitude by
Q.5-2 Accept/reject criteria may be specified in 1.36 and select the equi valent size
a code, spec ification , or the procedure. from the curves.
Upon what should these accept/reject C. Move the search unit in orthogona l
levels be based? directions until the amplitude drops to
SO percent of maximum to establi sh
A. accept/reject criteri a should be based the boundaries of the refl ector.
upon the experience of the operator D. Multipl y the sound beam diameter by
B. upon the item's end use and the 1.36 to yield the refl ector size.
criti cal flaw size
C. minimum size that can be detected
D. upon the largest size that can be

Q.5-3 What is the critical fl aw size in a forging

to be used in an aircraft landing gear?

A. 0.200 in. long

B. 2 mm long by 3 mm wide
C. a flaw that will grow during serv ice
D. a flaw whi ch may cause failure
during service

The Following Questions Apply to
Q.5-5 Reference standards are to be constructed Q.5-1 0 The work order has designated the
fro m materials that: inspectio n to be done lO a quality level of
"4" throughout a disk-shaped casting,
A. come from the same heat as the test 12 in. in diameter and 4 in. thick. Which
parIs. of the observed di scontinuities are
E. represe nt the alloy and heat treatment rejectable?
of each part.
C. have been L-wave tested to ensure A. signal 50 percent above ARL, 2 in .
freedom from major flaws. long by 2 in. wide
D. have a si mil ar metallurgical structure. B. signal 20 percent above ARL, 2.6 in.
in diameter
Q. 5-6 Personnel conducting UT shall be C. signal 100 percent ARL, 1.5 in . wide
certifi ed in accordance with: by 3 in. long
D. signaJ 90 percent ARL, area of
A. SNT·TC· JA 6.2 in .2
B. the manufacturer's written practice
(procedure), Q.5-1 1 The instrument reca libration schedul e
C. the buyer's wril.len practice caUs for the system to be checked (during
(procedu re). test ing):
D. nothing, they do not have to be
certified. A. prior to, every 4 hours, at personne l
changes and at testing end.
Q.5-7 Reference bl ocks are to be made using 8. every 8 hours per union contract.
FBHs: C. if system performance suggests
proble ms are present, e.g. , the battery
A. ranging in s ize fro m 3/64 - 8/64 in. li ght starts to fl ash.
B. of a single size equal 10 1/4 in. D . period ica ll y, using the transfer block
C. al depth s covering the range from as a basic reflector.
1-8 in.
D. nonc o f the above. Q.5- 12 A region wi th loss of back reflection
(below 50 percent) has been found; the
Q.5-8 Scanning practices ca ll for transducer nex t step is to:
position s lO:
A. inspect the region using another
A. be fro lll two orthogonal direction s. means such as radiography .
B. overlap each other by 10 percent. 8. inspect the reg ion using angle beams
C. change at rates at least equallO fro m two directions.
6 C. recheck to e nsure operati onal errors
D. none of the above. were not at fault.
D. li st as "questionable area" in final
Q.5-9 The ARL is to be set o n the sc reen such report.

A. the peak signal amplitude eq uals

3/4 FSH.
B. surface effects are refl ected as a
rev ised ARL.
C. the backwall echo is in the middle
third of the sweep.
D. scanning can be done at 6 dB over
re ference level.
The Following Questions Apply to
ASME Section V, Article 5
Q.5- 13 Reference standard s (calibration blocks) Q.5-17 A 3.5 in. thick casting, intended for a
are to be constructed from materials that: nuclear appli cation , is being inspected to
T-54 1.4. The quality level is to be
A. came from the same heal as the test ass igned:
B. have a si milar metallurgical structures A. in cooperation with the buyer as per
as the lest part s. Par. 2 of SA 609.
e. are the same materi al specificat io n, (Note: SA 609 is identical to ASTM A
grade, and heat treatment as parts. 609.)
D. are of the same thick ness as the test B. as leve l 3, s ince the thi ckness is
parts. between 2 and 4 in.
C. as levell , for near surfaces and
Q.5-14 Person nel co nducting UT shall be leve l 3 for middle 1.5 in.
certified in accordance with: D. fo ll owing a forma l NRC review for
B. the referencing Code section. Q.5-18 For a 3.5 in. nuclear grade casting, which
C. the vendor's written practice. of the following indications is (arc)
D. the Code of Ethics for ASME. considered rejectable?

Q.5- 15 The cali bration blocks for L-wave testing A. 120% ARL, Depth = 0.75 in. ,
of casti ngs shall use SDHs as show n in : Area = 1.3 in .2, Length:;:; 1.0 in.
B. 110% ARL, Depth = 1.25 in.,
A. II W block. Area = 1.8 in. 2 , Length = 2.75 in.
B. Figure 5.1. C. >100 % ARL, Depth = 2.0 in. ,
C. SA·609. Area = 3.1 in. 2, Length = 2.0 in.
D. none of the above. D. all of the above

Q.5 - 16 Scanning practices call for transducer Q.5-19 Compensation for differences betwee n
positions to: calibration blocks and cast lest part s is:

A. be from two orthogonal directions. A. made by adjusting the reference ga in

B. overlap each other by 10 percent. in accordance with backwall
C. never scan at rales in excess of reflections.
6 B. made by adju sting the reference gain
D. none of the above. us ing pairs of matched transducers.
C. not all owed.
D. not addressed.

Q.5-20 Several sc reen height linearity checks

y ielded the half amplitude results li sted
below for initial settings of 100, 80, 60,
40, and 20 percent FSH. Which set of
readings (%FS H) is considered Ollt of
ca libration ?

A. 54,42,27, 19,9
B. 50,34,26,20, II
C. 48,3 7,32,21, 10
D. 45,44,33, 18,9

T he Following Q uestions Apply to
the Representative Bui/ding Code
Q.5-2 1 A check of transducer perform ance using Q.5-23 How long would the ind icatio n have to
the IfW block indi cated the follow ing be in o rder to be considered rejected for
angles were being used. Wh ich se( s) is the above q uestion?
not in compli ance wi th the requirements
of the Representat ive Building Code? A. longer than 2 in.
B. longer than 3/4 in.
A. 68,72,44,62 C. any length
B. 46, 69,63, 59 D. it would be acceptable regardless of
C. 45,7 1,59,62 length
D. 43,62,72, 68
Q.5-24 The transducer in the above problem was
Q.5-22 T he signal from a weld discontinu ity, set bei ng used in accordance wi th Procedure
at 80 percent FS H, results in the gai n Number:
being set at SO dB. The reference
re nector req ui red a gain setti ng of onl y A. #4.
44 dB . The travel path was less than 1 in. B. #5.
The materi al thickness is 2.6 in. and a C. #7.
45-dcgree angle beam transducer was D. all of the above.
used. What is the flaw severity class?

A. A
C. C
D. D

Chapter 6
Special Topics
Chapter 6
Special Topics
This section di scusses a few items which freque ncies is equal to the fundamenta l
represent technologies which are not in the frequency, it does not matter whi ch harmoni cs
mainstream of UT but are of imporlance in that are excited.
they represent former app li cat ion areas of
interest and/or emergi ng issues which will Resonance testi ng was commonly used,
become part of the way UT is performed in the especially in the basic materia l ind ustries such as
future. the steel producers, as a qual ity control measure
for both thickness and lam inar defects. Improved
e lectronic ci rcuits have been used to create
Resonance Testing pu lse-echo devices whi ch are more accurate and
easier to use and interpret. As a result, resonance
The resonance technique is, perhaps, the testing is no longer in common use except for
oldest acoust ic/ultrasoni c nondestructive testing some primary materials characteri zations.
technique other than the visual method. Metal
structu res, especia ll y casti ngs and forg ings, wi ll
audi bly ring when struck a sharp blow. An Flaw Sizing Techniques
experie nced listener could often tell by the
ringing tone whether the part was flawed or not. Flaw detect ion w ith ultrasonics is at an
A structure sLlch as a bell when severely fla wed advanced state o f the art. S ignifi cant flaw s in
sounds wrong to most anyone, experienced or most str uctu res can be detected . When a UT
not; however, the accuracy of this technique left indication is identified as a flaw, normally some
much to be desired. W ith the advent of estimate of its size is required. Below is a list of
equipment capable of operati ng at ultrasoni c variables which affect these measurements. This
freq uencies, resonance was one of the first li st inc ludes, but is not li mited to, fl aw type, flaw
techn iques used for thickness measurement ; shape, location, multiple fl aws in same location,
al though some flaw detection, such as for geometric reflectors in same location, grain s ize
lamin ations, was also performed. When a and orien tation, fl aw orient ation, part
pi ezoelectric crystal is exc ited wi th a voltage confi guration, search unit characteristics, and
vary ing at the resonant frequency, the sound beam characteristics. Each of these
mechani cal energy produced is great ly variables can affect the measurement to a degree
increased. Th is frequency is achieved when the whic h is not the same from flaw to flaw.
wavelength in the material is twice the
thi ckness or a multiple thereof. In general, there are two flaw size categories
which are usually treated differently, those wi lh
In general use, a transducer is exc ited by a flaws larger than the beam diameter and those
time-varying frequency designed to sweep the smaller than the beam diameter. As a result of
crystal through the fundamental and several these factors, no one technique provides accurate
harmonic freq uencies. W hen a resonant flaw sizing on all flaws; however, numerous
cond ition is ac hieved, it is sensed as an techniques have been dev ised fo r flaw sizing.
increased loading on the transducer by the Most of these are based on some considerat ion
electronics and di splayed on the readout de vice. of signal amplitude.
Since the diffe rence between harmonic

Flaws can generally be described by three Large fl aws arc measured by scan ning or by
dimensions, length, width, and height , where the time-d ifference measurements, and, of course,
length and height are in a plane normal to the these may be combi ned. In lamin ar flaw
direction of max imum stress and the width is in measurement, the search unit is moved back and
the direction of the stress. In most situations li ttle forth until the ampl itude of the fl aw Signal drops
emphasis is placed on the determination of width to a predetermined level. Us ing this technique,
since it has lillie effect on the stress pattern. the fl aw perimeter can be determj ned. Thi s
Length is measured normal to the stress and tech nique is usually quite satisfactory.
parallel to the test item surface, whil e height is
measured normal 10 both the stress and the Thi s method is not the same for ang le beam
surface. Of these two, length can ordinari ly be measure ments whic h are usuall y used in weld
measured successfull y with the desired accuracy. examination. Measurement of the through wall
Height, on the other hand , is much more difficult dimen sion (height) is much more diffi cult.
to measure. Several techniques have been developed in
relationship to thick-wall weld examination and
For lami nar-type flaws, the length and width a few of these will be discussed.
refer to the dimensions in a plane paralle l to the
entry surface. Orientations of these dimensions is One of the most common techniques is the so
a mailer of procedure or choice. call ed "dB drop" techni que. In this technique,
the maximum amplitude signal is located and the
Small fl aws may be class ifi ed into two sound path and location recorded . The search
categories, fl aws smaller than the wavelength un it is then moved toward the reflector until the
and fla ws larger than the wavelength. A c ircu lar signal drops by a prese lected amount, usually
disk fl aw much small er than the wave length will 6 dB. At thi s point , the sound path and location
reflect a spherical wave wi th pressure are recorded. Thi s step is repeated with
proportional to the third power of the flaw movement away froIll the reflector. Plots of the
diameter and inverse ly proportional to the data using the known refracted angle provide a
wavelength . Very small flaws re fl ect very li ttle measure of the heigh t of the reflector.
e nergy and are difficult to detect.
A si mil ar but slightly differe nt techn ique is
Flaws larger than the wavelength and less the leadi ng-lagging ray approach. In thi s, the
than the beam diameter reflect sound search un it is maneuvered across a side-drilled
proportionally monotoni ca ll y with flaw size. hol e reflector in a cal ibration block as in the dB
That is, as the flaws get larger, the amplitude drop technique on a reflector. These data arc
increases, although not in a li near fashion. Two used to establi sh the leading and laggi ng beam
approaches commonl y used include edge angles. In the examinat ion, the locat ions of
area-amp litude blocks and the Krautkramer DGS the search unit are establi shed as in the dB drop
(d istance-gain -size) diagram. tn the first, techniq ue bUl the plots are made on the basis of
specimens are prepared with di fferen t size the pre-established beam edge angles.
reflectors. The amp li tude from the fl aw is
compared directly wit h the amp litude from a In the dynamic time of flight techn ique, a
known re flector. When a match is ach ieved, the focused, longitudinal wave, angle beam search
flaw is ass igned the reflector size. unit mounted on a mechanical scanner passes the
search unit across a crack. The sound path
In the DGS diagram, a series of curves with reflection from the crack is recorded with the
fl aw size as the parameter are plotted on an search unit position. The distance to the tip of
amp Iitude- versus-sou nd-path -diagram. the crack is determined by triangulat ion and the
Backsurface echo amplitude is plotted on the minimum sound path. Thi s techniq ue shows
same diagram. Flaw ampli tudes are then used to promise of good accu racy in some applications.
ass ign a flaw size where the equi valent flaw size
is a circular disk. Several techniques rel y on the detection of
diffracted waves e manat ing from the lips of a

crack. These very low ampli tude waves, if Original exam in ation with lip-diffraction
detected and iden tifi ed, can be used to measure used through-transmi ssion techniques. This
the fl aw height. In the satellite pulse techn ique technique is still used in selected application s. In
the screen is calibrated in through wa ll di mension this techn ique, angle beam search units are
rather than in metal path to the reflector. The placed on each side of a crack on the entry
distance from the tip-diffracted pu lse (satellite) surface. These are manipulated until the peak is
to the comer echo is a direct measurement of the maximized and the crac k tip is then located by
flaw height. This tec hnique has been triangulation .
successfully applied to measure intergranular
stress corrosion cracks in the nuclear e lectric
power indu stry.

Appendix A
A Representative Procedure for Ultrasonic Weld Inspection
1.0 SCOPE: 5.1.2 Using the selected angles and material
1.1 This procedure is to be used for detecting, thickness(es) , calculate the expected beam
locating and evaluating indications within the weld path and range of straight beam coverage
and heal affected zone of carbon steel and low required.
alloy welds using the contact inspection 5. 1.3 Using Table C of Scan Levels shown in
technique. Section 9.0, identify the scan levels to be
used for each segment of the weld.
2.0 PERSONNEL: 5. 1.4 Using Reference Table D, identify the
2.1 Personnel performing this examination shall be indicating rating levels which correspond 10
qualified in accordance with PO-I which is in Classes I through IV and enter them on
accordance with the guidelines 01 SNT· TC·1A Form A.
(1988). Only Levell! or 111 personnel shall 5.1.5 Enter any other special requirements for a
evaluate and report lesl results. specific configuration or job in the
comments section 01 Form A.
3.1 NE· l "Nondestructive Testing Equipmenr, 5.2 Prepare all applicable surfaces for UT inspection:
Rev. O. 5.2.1 Clean con tact surfaces of weld spatter, dirt,
rust, grease and any roughness that will
4.0 EQUIPMENT: interfere with the free movement of the
4.1 Pulse-echo Instruments and Transducers shall be search unit or would prevent the
selected only from the equipment inventory which transmission ot ultrasonic vibrations.
has been qualified and calibrated to meet the 5.2.2 Smooth weld surfaces adequately to
requirements of NE·l , -Nondestructive Testing prevent interference with the interpretation
Equipment.- of the examination . Weld surfaces shall
merge smoothly into the surfaces of the
4.2 The calibration block to be used for production adjacent base metal.
inspection shall be Ihe DSC (Distance/Sensitivity)
block. 5.3 Verify all equipment qualification and system
calibration checks prior to testing:
4.3 Couplants may include cellulose gum (mixed with 5.3. 1 Verify that all equipment to be used has
water) or glycerine. been qualified in accordance with NE-l and
the schedule requirements of Table A.
5.1 Review each test item's inspection requirements 5.4 Conduct and Maintain System Calibration Checks:
to be aware of contract stipulations for each weld 5.4. 1 Conduct the inspection system calibration
joint configuratioo prior to conducting production in accordance with NE-l , being sure that
weld inspection. Select an established Technique the reject control is turned off and remains
Sheet for the weld joint configuration or create a off throughout the inspection process.
new one that identities the inspection parameters 5.4.2 Calibrate the inspection "system~
of transducer angles, applicable segments of the (instrument, cable and transducer) before
weld(s) to be examined, maximum beam path and first use and
companion longitudinal wave scan region, scan a. Every 60 min.,
levels, and acceptance criteria in accordance with b. At the completion of each examination or
Form A, shown in Section 10.0 of this procedure. series of similar examinations,
I! a new Technique Sheet is prepared by other c. When examination personnel change,
than the Level III individual, the Technique Sheet and
shall be reviewed and approved by the Level III d. When ele<:trical Circuitry is disturbed in
prior to use during production inspections. any way, e.g ., changes in transducer,
5. 1.1 Using Relerence Table B shown in battery, ele<:trical outlet, co-axial cable or
Section 9.0 ot this procedure, identify the power outage.
transducer angle(s) required to totally 5.4.3 Straight Beam Calibration
inspect the material Ihickness(es) and joint a. Using a location on the base metal free
design(s) being considered . of any indications, set sweep range to

Table A. Schedule of Equipment Qualification

Check Transducers· Instrument


Before First Use Resolution Horizontal linearity

Dimensions Vertical Linearity
Approach Distribution
Index Point
Sound Path Angle
Internal Refle<:tion

After 4 hours of use Index Point

Sound Path Angle

After 80 hours use Internal Reflection Horizontal Linearity

Vertical Linearity
• Straight Beam T ransducer s are to be checked for resolution
before first. use.

clearly display both the first and second Form B and columns X. Y, Depth,
back surface reflections. Length , and Comment.
b. Set the pulse reflected from the first back d. Satisfactory base metal tests results are
surtace to a height of 80% FSH. to be indicated for each weld by placing
5.4.4 Angle Beam Calibration a check mark in the column identified
a. Using the DSC block, adjust the "L-wave" in Form B.
instrumenllo represent the actual sound
path distance using either the 5 in. or 6.0 WELD AND HAZ EXAMINATION USING ANGLE
10 in. range on the CAT screen. BEAM TRANSDUC ERS :
b. Using the DSC block, adjust the 6 .1 Using the 2.25 MHz angle beam transducer
maximum attainable signallrom the identified in the technique sheet and operating at
0.06 in. SDH to 50% of FSH and record a scanning level about the 0.06 in. SOH reference
the "Reference Level" reading of the gain level in accordance with the technique sheet, scan
control, on Form B, "Ultrasonic the entire volume of the weld and HAl (a) using a
Inspection Results." 30% overlapping pattern. (b) while continuously
rotating the transducer a few degrees alternately
Base Material Examination: to each side and (c) at a speed not to exceed 6 in.
5.5.1 Using a calibrated 2.25 MHz longitudinal per second. Enter all applicable information onto
transducer over the area identified in the "Ultrasonic Inspection Results," Form B, as each
Technique Sheet, scan the base malerial item in the form is identified. For butt welds,
through which angle beam testing will take repeat the scan from the opposite side of the
place using a 20% overlapping pattern and weld.
at a speed not to exceed 6 in. per second. 6.1.1 Repeat 6.1 for all requ ired examination
This initial base material examination is for angles as identified in the technique sheet.
the purpose of assuring a predictable 6.1.2 If pari of the weld is inaccessible for
environment for the angle beam testing that examination due to base material laminar
is to follow and is not to be used as an con tent or restrictive geometric conditions,
acceptancelrejection examination. full weld coverage shall be attained using
5.5.2 If any area of the inspected base metal one or more of the following alternatives.
exhibits total loss of back reflection or any a. Grind the weld surtace{s) flush and scan
indication equal to or greater than the on the weld surtace.
original back-reflection height, its size, b. Scan from other accessible surlaces.
location and depth shall be reported on the c. Use other search unit angles such as
Form B, shown in Section 10.0 45°, 60 Q , or 70° .
a. Size is to be determined using the 50%
amplitude loss (6 dB) method for 6.2 Evaluation of Discontinuities
discontinuities larger than the transducer. 6.2.1 When an indication of a discontinuity
b. Size is to be determined using the appears on the screen, use the gain control
transducer edge approach method for (or attenuator) to adjust the maximum
discontinuities smaller than the attainable indication to 50% of the CRT's
transducer. FSH . Record the gain control reading (dB)
c. Unsatisfactory regions are to be on Form B, "Ultrasonic Inspection Results"
identified using the shaded areas in shown in Section 10.0, in the "Indication
Level" column.

6.2.2 Estimate the effect of sound attenuation by 6.2.6 For each weld that is inspected. the results
subtracting 2 in. from the sound path of that inspection shall be recorded using
distance to the indication and multiply the Form B, however only the weld 10. L-wave
remainder by 3 (i.e., triple the remainder). check, acceptance status and comments (if
Record this value (dB) in the "Indication any) need be noted for those welds free of
Factor" column of Form B. any measurable ultrasonic indications.
6.2.3 Determine the "Indicating Rating~ by
subtracting the sum of the ~ Indicat ion 7.0 DOCUMENTATION:
Lever and the "Indication Factor" from the 7.1 Record the detailed test results of all inspections
"Reference Level" setting and record the on Form S, ~Ultrasonic Inspection Results," as
result in the "Indicating Rating" column of shown in the attachments.
Form B. 7.2 Mark locations of unacceptable indications directly
6.2.4 Evaluate the length of each discontinuity by over the discontinuity and note the depth and
measuring the distance between the center class of each discontinuity on nearby base metal.
line of the transducer's 50% drop locations.
6.2.5 Classify (I , II, III, IV) each discontinuity in 8.0 REPAIRS:
accordance with the criteria listed in the 8.1 After weld repairs have been made, re-examine
Technique Sheet and establish its accepU repaired areas in accordance wi th this procedure
reject status based on each indication's and enter results on the interlaced lines of
class, length, and sepa ration from nearby Form B.
surfaces and adjacent indications.
9.0 REFERENCE TABLES: (See Tables B, C, and D)


Forms A and B)

Table B. Testing Angle Selection

Material Thickness
(inches) Angles of Inspection
Top Middle Bottom

0.30 - 1.50 70 70 70
>1.50-1.75 70 70 70
>1.75-2.50 60 70 70
>2.50-3.50 45 70 70
>3.50-4.50 60 70 60
>4.50-5.00 60 60 60
>5.00-6.50 45 70 45
>6.50-7.00 45 45 45
General Notes:
1. The "Top" of the weld extends one-quarter through the
thickness of the base material and is the region closest
to the surface from which the angle-beam scanning
takes place. The "Bottom" of the weld is the
quarter· thickness region opposite from the scan surface.
The "Middle" zone is the central region of the weld and
is equal to one-half of the thickness of the base
2. Inspections should be made in first Jeg of beam path.
3. Legs II and In can be used when access is limited.
4. All fusion-line indications shall be further evaluated
with transducers which exhibit beam paths nearest to
being perpendicular to the suspected fusion surface.

Table C. Ultrasonic Scanning Levels

Sound Path (in.) Above Zero Reference dB

thru 2·1/2 12
>2·1/2 to 5 19
>5 to 10 29
>10 to 15 39

Table D. Ultrasonic Acce pt-Reject Criteria

(inc h es) Class Angle
r' [! III IV"

0.30·0.75 +5 +6 +7 +8 70"

>0.75·1.50 +2 +3 +4 +5 70"

>1.50·2.50 +1 +2 & +3 +4 & +5 +6 60"

-2 ·1 & 0 +1 & +2 +3 70"

>2.50·4.00 0 +1 &+2 +3 &+ 4 +5 45"

-2 ·1 & 0 +1 & +2 +3 60"
-5 -4 &·3 ·2 to +2 +3 70"

>4.00·8.00 -1 0&+1 +2 & +3 +4 45"

-4 ·3 &·2 · 1 to +2 +3 60"
-7 ·6 &·5 ·4 to +2 +3 70"
• and below
•• and above
General Notes:
1. Class II and III indications shall be separated by at least 2L, L being the
length of the longer naw.
2. Class II and III indications shall not begin at. a distance less t han 2L
from weld ends carryi ng primary tensi le stress, L being the indication
3. Weld thickness shall be defined as the nominal thickness of the thinner
of the two parts being joined.
4. Rejectable are all Class I indications, Class II indications in excess of
0.60 in. , and Class III indications over 1.25 in . All Class IV indications
are considered acceptable.

Form A. Ultrasonic Testing Technique Sheet


- _ __
DAT E: _ _ _ _ _ _ __
APPROVED: _ _ _ _ _ __
)oi nl(s) Leve l III

Th ickness: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __

Transducer Angles:
TO P: _ _ _ _ __

MID: _ _ _ _ __

BOT : _ _ _ __

L-wave Range: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __

Scan Leve l: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __

Rating/Class/Reject Criteria:
_ _ db /I / All Sketch of Inspection Scheme
_ _ db / II / L>O.60 in.
_ _ db / III / L> 1.25 in. (M)
_ _ db / IV / Accepl

COMMMENTS: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __

Prepared By: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Level II III

FORM: UT-TSI ,8/89

ANGLF; RH I n~ ~' 1. dO SOI!/SU fAIII (Its ) I.EG I I E'G II ~

X Y DEPT 'o"
H :0


2 :0

....<: li
... 3


Review Questions for a Representative Procedure for
Ultrasonic Weld Inspection
Q-A 1 With scanning being done from the top Q-A4 One of two C lass II indications in a
surface of a 1-1/4 ill. thick weldment, the 0.75 in. weld that is carrying primary
scanning level for inspection of the rOOt tensile stress is 0.45 in . from the end of
area would be, with respect to the the weld and 0.15 in. long. The other is
reference level: 0.25 in. long and they are within 0.35 in .
of each other. The statu s of the weld
A. 12dB. should be identified as:
B. 14dB.
C. 19dB. A. acceptable, based on proximity to the
D. 29dB. next nearest indication.
S. acceptable, based on
Q-A2 The reference level recorded using the indication-Iength-to-weld-thickness
DSC block for the above case was 32 dB. ratio.
A n indicati on detected near the root of e. rejectable, based on proximity to the
the weld was 34 dB when corrected for end of the weld.
attenuation. Thus the indication is to be D. rejectable, based on proximity to the
designated as being: next nearest indication.

A. Class I. Q-A5 A Class III indication found at a fusion

B. Class II. interface in a weld that is in a region
C. Class III. which is carrying a primary tensi le st ress
D. C lass IV. is I in . from the end of the 0.75 in . thick
weld and within 0.5 in. of another
Q-A3 The weld joint being inspected has a Class II indkation that has been
backing bar near the 114 in. foot with a determined to be 0.2 in. long. The
45-degree groove angle and unground Class III indication has been determined
weld crown. Having found an indication to be 0.5 in. long. The status of the weld
at a depth equal 10 112 the thickness of should be identified as:
the base material and in the vicinity of
the interface between the base metal and A. acceptable, based on proximity to the
the weld metal, further investigations next nearest indication.
should be conducted using: S. acceptable, based on the indication
being at a fusion interface but less
A. an L-wave transducer to ensure the than 1.25 in.
base material is free of laminations or e. rejectable, based on proximity to the
any other sou nd reflecting conditions. next nearest indication.
B. the same angle beam transducer that D. rejectable, based on proximity to the
detected the indication , only scanning end of the weld.
from the opposite side of the weld.
e. a 45-degree angle beam transducer
and a beam path within the first leg of
the Vee path.
D. a 45-degree angle beam transducer
and a beam path within the second
leg of the Vee path.

Q-A6 An indication in the top quarter of a 3 in. Q-A9 Inspections conducted in accordance with
thick weld has been exam ined using three the procedure are based on contact
di fferent angle beam transducers (45, 60, testing using as a couplant.
and 70 degree), each of wh ich has
res ulted in a rating equal 10 0 dB. The A. water bubblers and similar
indication should be identified as: water-based scanning dev ices
B. water and cellulose gum mixtures
A. Class I. adjusted for surface conditions
B. Class II. C. industrial grade o il s and greases
C. Class III. adj usted for surface conditions
D. Class IV. D. commercial mixtures of proprietary
fluids designed to reduce residues
Q-A 7 The procedure calls for compensating fo r prone to cause corrosion in carbon
attenuation effects through the use of steel
correction factors which, upon
examination, appear to be based upon: Q-A 10 When usi ng a 70-degree transducer to
examine the root area of a single Vee
A. an effective near fi eld that does not wel d, the scannin g level must be
exceed 2 in. increased by 7 dB over the thin materi als
B. an e ffecti ve beam spread and/or scanning level (12 dB) for base metals
scatter that is at a rate of 3 dB per in. with thicknesses between:
beyond the near field.
C. both A and B. A. 0.50 and 1.00 in.
D. the changes in ultrasonic wave energy B. 0.75 and 1.53 in.
scatter caused by changes in C. 0.85 and 1.7 1 in.
allowable operating freq uencies. D. 0.95 and 2.25 in.

Q-A8 A transition butt weld is to be exami ned Q-A II The scannin g level for use with a
in accordance with the procedure . The 60-degree transducer is set for 29 dB
weld is to be a smooth transition from a above the reference level established
3.75 in. thick base material to a 3.25 in. during the system calibration. Thi s
thick material. The proced ure calls for scanning level is thus applicab le to
the weld to be examined usi ng: materi al thic knesses in the range fro m:

A. a 70-degree transducer from both A. 2.50-5 .00 in.

sides. B. 5.00-10.00 in.
B. a 45-degree transducer from both C. 3.54-7.08 in.
sides .. D. 4.00-8.00 in.
C. a 60-degree transducer from both
sides. Q-A 12 1n preparing for the angle beam
D. a ll of the above. inspection, a longitud ina l wave scan of
Lhe base metal is conducted throughout a
region extending at least to
either sidc of the weld center li ne when a
1 in. welded plate is to be inspected.

A. I in.
B. 1.7 1 in.
C. 2.25 in.
D. 2.75 in.

Q-A 13 Sound path angle and index (exit) point Q-A 17 If part of the weld is inaccess ible for
need to be checked: examination due to base materi al lamin ar
content or restrictive geometric
A every 4 hours of use. cond itions, the best alternative and
B. every 60 minutes. permitted approach to testing a weld is
C. when examinati on personnel chan ge. to:
D. at the comp let ion of each series of
similar exam inatio ns. A scan the we ld using search unit
ang les other than that initi all y
Q-A 14 Longitudinal wave testing conducted for selected , such as 55 or 65 degrees.
the purpose o f sc reening base materials B. exam ine the weld fro m other
prior to ang le beam testing for we ld accessible surfaces using the
di scontinui ties, requires an overl ap scan magnetic particl e method and using
pattern of at least: the yoke or prod techniques.
C. grind the weld surface(s) nu sh and
A. 10 percent. scan on the weld surface using the
B. 15percent. long itud inal wave technique.
C. 20 pe rce nt. D. none of the above.
D. none of the above.
Q-A 18 An indication is fo und at a sou nd path
Q-A 15 Lami nar types of di scontinui ties are to be distance of 5.6 in. T hu s the effect of
recorded on Form B (the "U ltrason ic sound attenuatio n to be entered into
In spectio n Results" sheet) provided they Fonn B is estimated to be:
exhibit a pul se height equal to or greater
than : A. 8dB.
B. 9 dB.
A. 50 percent FS H. c. 10dB.
B. 75 pe rcent FSH. D. II dB.
C. 80 perce nt FSH.
D. 90 percent FSH. Q-A 19 A series of welds are examined and
found to be free of any objectionable
Q-A 16 Angle beam testing conducted for the indications. Thu s:
purpose of detecting di scontinuities
within welds and thei r adjacent A Form B need not be fill ed out in its
heat-affected zones requires an o verl ap entirety.
scan pattern of at least: B. the statu s of each we ld needs to be
marked as acceptable.
A. 10 percent. C. the indicatio n of sati sfactory L-wave
B. 15 percent. inspection needs to be marked wi th a
C. 20 percent. check mark .
D. 30 percent. D. all of the above.

Q-A20 A series o f welds are examined and Q-A22 An indicat ion in a 3 in. weldmen t yields
found 10 con tain several unacceplable an indication level of + I dB fo r the
indications. Thus: 45-degree tran sducer and -2 dB for the
70-degree transducer. The indication
A. each unacceptable weld needs to be shou ld be identified as:
marked with a check mark at the end A. Class 1.
of each weld loaded in tension. B. Class II.
S. each unacceptable ind ication location e. Class 1Il.
needs to be marked direct ly over the D. Class IV.
d iscontinuity.
C. location and depth/class of each Q-A23 An indication in the middle of a 5 in.
discontinuity need to be marked weldment has been identified Class 111
directly over the discontinuity and with a 6 dB down length of 1.1 in. This
nearby on the base material , indication, in accordance with the
respectively. procedure, is:
D. Form S , completed in compliance A. considered acceptable.
with the procedure, is the full B. considered rejectable.
documentation required for each C. 1O be considered for furthe r
indication. exanunalion by other NDT means.
D. none of the above.
Q-A21 In reviewing a completed Form S , it is
found that two complete sets of Q-A24 An indication 1.75 in. long and in the
discontinuity data are recorded for a vicinity of the base-metal to weld-metal
rcnector found at the same locat ion and fu sion line of a 5 in. weldment has been
depth in the same weld. The second set of tentati vely identified as Class IV us ing a
data is recorded on the line directly si ngle angle beam transducer. This
below the first set of data. Both sets indication , in accordance wi th the
indicate an unacceptabl e condition. It is procedure, is:
A. considered acceptable since all
A. a repair has been completed and the Class IV indications are considered
repair has been judged to be acceptable.
unacceptable. B. considered rejectable si nce it exceeds
B. the inspector mi sread the data taken the 1.25 in. lim it for fu s ion type
during the ins pect ion. flaws.
C . a repair is in process and the data will C. to be considered for fu rlher
be changed pending the inspection of exami nation by transducers with
the repaired region. angles closest to being perpendicu lar
D. none of the above. to the fusion line.
D. to be subjected to X-ray examination
in order to obta in a second
"techn ical" opin ion.

Answer Key to Chapter Review Questions

Chapter I Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Appendix A

I.D I. C I.D I.A I.D A I. C
2. C 2. C 2. B 2. C 2. B A2. A
3. B 3. D 3. B 3.D 3. D A3. D
4.A 4. A 4. D 4. C 4.C A4. D
5. C 5. D 5. D S. D S. D AS.C
6. C 6. D 6. D 6. C 6. D A6.A
7. C 7. A 7. B 7. A 7. B A7. C
S. D S. B S. B S. B S. D AS. D
9. B 9. A 9. A 9. A 9. A A9. B
10. B 10. A 10. D 10. D 10. B AIO.C
II. A II. D II. C II. A II. D All. A
12. B 12.C 12.C 12. B 12. C A12. D
13. D 13. B 13. D 13. A 13. C AI3. A
14. B 14.C 14.A 14. D 14. B A I4.C
15. A 15.C 15. D 15. C 15. D AIS. C
16. D 16.A 16. D 16. A 16. B A16. D
17. A 17. B 17. B 17. B 17. C A17. D
IS. A IS. B 18. C IS. B 18. both A andC AIS. D
19.C 19. B 19. B 19. C A19. D
20. A 20. A 20. A 20. none or the A20. C
21. B 2 1. A 2 1. D above A21. A
22. B 22. A 22. B 21. B A22. B
23. D 23. B 23. A 22. C A23. A
24. D 24. A 24. B 23. A A24. C
25. B 24. B
26. C
27. C

Appendix C

I. Bray, D.E. and R.K. Stanley. 4. Krautkramer, J. and H. Krautkramer.

Nondestructive Evaluatioll: A Tool ill Ultrasonic Testin g of Materials, 4th ed.
Design, Ma nufacturing and Service. Boca New York: Springer-Verlag, Inc., 1990.
Raton: CRC Press , 1997.
5. McMaster, R. c.. editor. Nondestructive
2. Metals Handbook, ninth ed ition, Testing Handbook, VoL I-II. New York:
Volume 17, "Nondestructive Evaluation The Ronald Press Co., 1959.
and Quality Control." Metals Park, Ohio:
ASM International, 1989. 6. Birks, Albert S. and Robert E. Green ,
tcchnicaJ edi tors; Pau l Mcintire, editor.
3. Silk, M.G. Ultrasonic Transducersfor Nondestructive Testing Han dbook, second
Nondestructive Testillg. Bristol , Eng land: edition ,Vo lu me 7: Ultrasonic Testing.
Adam Hilger Ltd., 1984. Col umbus, Ohio: The American SocielY
ror Nondestructive Testing, inc., 1991.

The American Society for
Nondestructive Testing, Inc.
1711 Arlingate Lane
PO Box 28518
Columbus,OH 43228-0518
Catalog No. 2261