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Wall Thickness Measurements for Metal Cans, Containers and Enclosures

Aluminum cans used in the beverage industry are routinely inspected for wall thickness. The "old-fashioned" way entailed cutting them up and then measuring the wall manually. With ultrasonic gaging, wall thickness can be measured instantly and digitally by simply coupling ultrasound into the part from the outside. Ultrasonic measurements with a hand-held transducer are usually straight forward.

Quality control of deep drawn metal containers, such as heart pacemaker enclosures, can also benefit greatly from ultrasonics. The radiused edges of these enclosures can get very thin and are critical areas for accurate thickness measurements.

Equipment: In general, metal wall thicknesses greater than 0.008 in. (0.20mm) can be measured with the Model 45MG gage with Single Element software and the Model 38DL PLUS gage, using a 20 MHz or 10 MHz delay line transducer, to a calibrated accuracy of  ±0.0002 in. or ±0.002mm. Contact transducers are used for thicker metal up to 10 in. (250mm) or more. Transducer selection will depend on the exact application; contact us for details. It should be noted that the thickness of aluminum and titanium containers and parts can also be measured with the Olympus Magna-Mike Model 8600. This instrument utilizes the Hall Effect to provide thickness measurements on any non-magnetic material in the range of 0 to 1.0 in. (0 to 25 mm).

Olympus IMS
Products used for this application

The handheld 45MG ultrasonic thickness gage is packed with measurement features and software options. This unique instrument is compatible with the complete range of Olympus dual element and single element transducers, making this gage an all-in-one solution for virtually every thickness gage application.
The 38DL PLUS is an advanced ultrasonic thickness gage. Uses dual element transducer for internal corrosion applications, and has features that include THRU-COAT technology and echo-to-echo. Uses single element transducers for very precise thickness measurements of thin, very thick, or multilayer materials.
The Magna-Mike is a Hall effect thickness gage that uses a magnetic probe to perform accurate measurements on nonferrous and thin materials such as plastic bottles.
The 27MG is a basic ultrasonic thickness gage designed to make accurate measurements from one side on internally corroded or eroded metal pipes and parts. It is lightweight, durable, and ergonomically designed for easy, one-hand operation..
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