The ASTM E2700 Standard Practice for Contact Ultrasonic Testing of Welds Using Phased Arrays is used as an example of typical code requirements. This practice refers to the use of angle beam inspection with either sectorial scan (S-scan) or linear scan (L-scan), also called electronic scan (E-scan). The practice is based on its equivalent ASTM E164 for conventional UT.
A typical setup workflow for weld inspection will include these most common steps that an inspector must go through before going on-site. The scan plan would include: define inspection parameters, choose probe and wedge, define part being inspected, define focal laws, position probes on part, and set up the encoder. The final step would be calibration.
The scan tab allows the operator to set regular ultrasonic testing (UT) settings and all parameters used to calculate focal laws while the geometry tab is used to set the probe/wedge positions. The result is a scan plan that can be visualized in either 2-D or 3-D, providing a powerful tool to ensure appropriate beam coverage and probe positioning.
As a final example, consider a TOFD scan with a -12 decibel (dB) beam divergence, which in this particular case shows a lack of coverage near the weld cap. Again, the 3-D view could provide an instant answer without the need for complex calculations.
This demonstrates some of the capabilities of the new software tools that are now made available directly on phased array flaw detectors. These tools can be used to meet requirements relative to scan plan development. They provide advantages not only during the preparation process, but also while performing the inspection on-site.
Tech TipsCommon steps that an inspector has to go through before going on-site:
Define inspection parameters
Choose probe and wedge
Define part being inspected
Define focal laws
Position probes on part
Set up the encoder