Parts made of laminated composite materials pose a wide range of inspection challenges. Whether for manufacturing or maintenance, these inspections often involve complicating factors such as large surface areas, varying thicknesses and geometries, and defects that are located just below the surface. The Carbon-Fiber-Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) Inspection Solution from Olympus provides a complete set of tools that simplify the inspection of composite parts, including skins, stringers, and spars. The CFRP Inspection Solution’s main components include the OmniScan® flaw detector, GLIDER™ scanner, RollerFORM™ wheel probe, and Mini-Wheel encoder. Probes and wedges specifically designed for CFRP flat and curved parts inspection complete the solution. Advanced features include two-axis encoded C-scans with amplitude and time-of-flight (TOF) information, gate synchronization, and data recording.
During maintenance inspections, this solution quickly identifies typical defects such as subsurface disbonds or inclusions embedded in repaired sections. It is also easy to implement in manufacturing environments, where delamination and porosity detection is critical. The solution offers you the flexibility to perform complete semiautomated mapping of large surfaces during production or individual repairs during maintenance, as well as manual inspection of smaller parts or difficult-to-access areas.
High-Precision Inspection of Flat Panels
When performing complete mapping of large surfaces, the GLIDER scanner is used for accurate X-Y positioning during phased array or UT inspection.
Small Footprint for Small Parts
For difficult-to-access areas, such as stringers or spars, the Mini-Wheel encoder can be attached directly to the probe to achieve the smallest footprint.
Ergonomic Inspection of Flat or Curved Surfaces
In addition to providing exceptional coupling, the tire of the RollerFORM wheel is made of a unique material that closely matches the acoustic impedance of water, a design feature that helps ensure optimum data quality. The tire material is transparent so that you can easily identify the presence of air bubbles or contaminants within the water chamber. With its integrated indexing button, the ergonomically designed RollerFORM enables you to map the surface of an inspected material by acquiring and combining multiple one-line, encoded C-scans. The built-in laser guide facilitates straight and precise one-line scans.
Affordable Inspection of Flat Surfaces
When limited space is a factor, the VersaMOUSE is an economical complimentary scanning tool to the GLIDER. Equipped with the same probe and Aqualene wedge commonly used with the GLIDER, the VersaMOUSE is capable of performing 2-D mapping of much smaller parts and areas. When compared to the Mini-Wheel encoder, the VersaMOUSE offers many additional features.
The integrated Indexer button on the VersaMOUSE and RollerFORM makes 2-D mapping as easy as a click of the thumb. You simply perform an encoded one-line scan, then press the button to index the position in the perpendicular direction. When the next one-line scan is performed, it is automatically juxtaposed to the previous scan in real time on the instrument’s display. This process is repeated to produce a complete 2-D map of the area of interest.
The Olympus Aqualene wedge and RollerFORM wheel probe provide exceptional coupling, improved measurements, and enhanced near-surface resolution. Both enable the use of an immersion-type setup, which allows synchronization of the measurement gates with the front wall echo, simplifying signal interpretation and offering more consistent C-scans. Test repeatability is improved, thus increasing the inspection rate.
Aqualene wedges are available for NW1, NW2, and NW3 phased array probes, and they can be ordered with an optional water recuperation system (WR option) for improved contact on irregular surfaces and minimum water loss.
The reduction in interface echo provided by Aqualene wedges contributes to an improvement in near-surface resolution of up to 50% by enabling you to position the measurement gate closer to the interface.
The OmniScan® MXU software has a full range of tools and displays for composite inspection applications:
OmniScan data is seamlessly imported into TomoView for further processing and analysis.
Computer-based data analysis software with a full range of composite evaluation features:
Olympus also offers a solution for the inspection of CFRP radii. This solution features appropriate holders and curved linear arrays that cover the entire corner in a single pass. The geometry of the probe allows for all of the ultrasonic beams to coincide at 90° with the surface of the corner in a manner similar to flat-surface inspection. This radii inspection is performed in water immersion, either from the inside or the outside of the radii, depending on the shape and size.