Objectives

The overall project aim of BondTest is to deliver a high sensitivity Phased Array Ultrasonic Testing (PAUT) system capable of operating with high near-surface resolution with Full Matrix Capture (FMC) techniques and Automatic Defect Recognition (ADR) software.

The scientific objective is to research and model the interaction of directional beam ultrasonic waves with the joint interface in diffusion bonded joints between agreed target combinations of dissimilar metals including the capability to fine focus the ultrasonic beam at close proximity.

Design and build a PAUT assembly: To examine diffusion bonded welds in a variety of materials including metals, ceramics and dissimilar metal joints to a high sensitivity (defect detectability for small defects of 0.1mm) with beam focusing at < 10mm from the surface.

Develop FMC technique: The transmission from a single element of the array is received on all of the elements before repeating the process throughout the entire array. The entire test data set is processed to generate the defect image with an increased SNR and corresponding enhanced defect image and characterisation (shape, size and position) performance.

Develop ADR algorithms: Will automatically classify the specified detected defects and categorise their acceptability or otherwise. This will provide accurate and consistent sentencing criteria when applied over the component production run.

Develop a pre-production prototype integrated PAUT system: The system will include data processing and display software and FMC technique and ADR software with operating procedures describing the application of the developed technique capable of testing diffusion bonded joints to the required industrial level

Evaluate the inspection performance of the BondTest ultrasonic inspection system: Testing and evaluating on representative diffusion bonded samples and actual in-situ bonds that are operating in-service.