This Case Studies Special Advertising Section features manufacturing companies with real-world challenges using quality equipment, software and services to solve their problems and improve their processes. These problem solving stories describe myriad manufacturing challenges and how the correct application of a supplier’s product or service made the difference, providing quantitative benefits to quality and manufacturing issues. The suppliers in this special section present these real-world problems and solutions to help NDT Magazine subscribers who may have similar experiences. Laserweld Quality Verified Inline at Production Speeds by New Ultrasonic Inspection System To verify the integrity of laserwelds in automobile transmission gear assemblies in high speed welding production lines, only a few samples can be sectioned periodically, leaving all the other assemblies untested. Working closely with international automobile parts manufacturers for many years, and in response to their requests, Andec Mfg. Ltd. Has developed, and installed, its non-destructive Ultrasonic Laserweld Inspection Technology (ULIT) systems, to provide inspection of all assemblies in a line, at production speeds. In the ULIT systems the laser welded gear assembly is automatically placed on a self locating inspection fixture, submerged in a rust inhibited liquid to couple an Ultrasonic sound beam into the part, while it is rotated in front of a special custom made transducer assembly. The sound beam passes through a properly fused weld but is reflected from defects around the weld, such as lack of fusion or penetration, voids or shrinkage cracks, or a displaced weld or misaligned assembly. The ULIT system computer interprets these signals and displays them on a multicolour circle showing the location and size of defects around the weld. It also computes the percentage of the total weld area which these defects represent, and displays that in a numeric readout, as shown. All of the assemblies are inspected at production speeds, with automatic acceptance and rejection determined by the size of individual defects, the total number of small defects, or the percentage of the total weld area which all defects represent. INDUSTREX HPX-1 Digital System For Non-Destructive Testing The Carestream Industrex HPX-1 computed radiography system is built from the ground up to meet the varied and specific needs of non-destructive testing. The HPX-1 CR system includes a feature-benefit set that takes CR technology to a new level of performance. Only the HPX-1 has the capability to handle long plates, short plates, rigid cassettes and flexible plates—all in a single system.With industry leading image resolution: the HPX-1 delivers weld-quality images, consistently and dependably, as well as full dynamic range and sensitivity for all other applications. The system comes fully pre-configured and ready to operate after only a few simple connections. The powerful, easy-to-learn software and intuitive interface minimizes training time; CR operators will be u p and running fast. A simplified workflow improves productivity with enhanced annotation capabilities, automatic file naming and a double file save capability (both Industrex and DICONDE formats).The HPX-1 is also transportable, durable, and designed to perform in the harshest of NDT environments. The HPX-1 has single-handedly upgraded the reliability of digital capabilities in the non-destructive testing marketplace. Multiplate handling boosts output productivity. A positive pressure filtered air system ensures clean images in the laboratory and remote operations. The shock and vibration resistant design for imaging in harsh environments brings new confidence in using digital imaging in the field. Every aspect of the HPX-1 has been designed with industrial applications in mind, from the ergonomically engineered handles, to the flat straight feed path for the plates. MENNIE MACHINE COMPANY: A VISION FOR QUALITY Borescopic visual inspection is a key component of Mennie Machine Company’s quality procedures. For some assignments, borescopic inspection is conducted in the traditional way, in conjunction with various methods of thermal and manual de-burring. However, industrywide, borescopes are increasingly being connected to video cameras to allow on-screen viewing of live borescopic inspections, as well as the capture of video footage and still photos. Knowing this, Mennie Machine Company has taken borescopic visual inspection to a whole new level with its custom designed robotic inspection cells. They are fully automated, robot load, robot unload, cell inspection. Quality Manager, Kyle Goetsch said, “We basically developed a database of known good and bad product. Using video cameras attached to 8 different Hawkeye Borescopes (www.gradientlens.com), inspection images can be captured inside virtually any machined part.Inside one fuel system part alone, we capture, 24 different images using the Hawkeye Borescopes attached to cameras.Those images are then displayed, stored, and compared to reference images, on a computer and monitor outside the manufacturing cell’s cage. “In putting this robotics system together, and in visual inspection stations around the shop, we tested a number of different borescopes. Hawkeyes are clearly the best for our needs, with regard to magnification, craftsmanship and cost. Most important, we haven’t found anything that can match them for adequate lighting at the point of inspection” Goetsch said. Imaging, Expands Capability In Composite Testing In the past the majority of bond testing has been extremely subjective and dependent on the skill/experience level of the inspector which can lead to making an incorrect call during an inspection.As with other NDT methods imaging gives visualization, the ability to archive and a way for “remote” analysis of the inspection, bond testing is no different.In general bond testing depends on differentiating a “good” area from a “bad” area by watching the change in phase and amplitude response from the part.One of the major problems with conventional bond testing equipment is that with some defect types there is only a very small shift in either phase or amplitude when scanning across the defect area. On the screen of the conventional bond testing equipment it may be almost impossible for the technician to see the defect, but with imaging we are able to see a slight trend in an area that under normal circumstances would never have been noticed. This slight trend or difference in signal response only shows up when looking at the big picture you get with area imaging. Having this capability opens up many new materials and applications to bond testing as a viable inspection method. Powell Valves Makes the X-MET7000 Handheld XRF Analyzer the Instrument of Choice for Positive Material Identification (PMI) Inspection Powell Valves is a global supplier of high-performance valves used in piping systems for industrial manufacturing within prominent companies throughout the country and the world, spanning multiple industries such as chemical, petrochemical, pharmaceutical and many more. These valves are used in the most challenging applications: high pressure, high-temperature, and highly corrosive environments where dependable performance is critical. As a manufacturer of high-end valves being introduced into these critical performance situations, it is important for Powell Valves and for their customers to ensure that each product that they manufacture and supply meets and exceeds the expectation of the superb quality that they have become known for. A basic and integral part of meeting these stringent quality demands is to follow a comprehensive quality assurance program; this requires having complete certainty that every valve produced is made of the correct alloy.To have the complete confidence that their high quality valves meet specification, Powell Valves implemented testing with Oxford Instruments’ X-MET7000 handheld XRF analyzer into their quality control program for the positive material identification (PMI) of both incoming and outgoing products. According to Dickie Thompson, Quality Director at Powell Valves, “We like the speed of the analyzer, and the new computer interface. The data output capabilities are also great…the ability to create a report directly from the system is perfect for when we need to generate certification reports for our customers.” In addition to these benefits, the built-in grade library includes over six hundred alloys, and if using AISI the grade library includes 600 alloys, such as many Aluminum alloys, Copper alloys, Nickel alloys, Stainless Steels, Low Alloy Steels and others, and adding to a grade library can be easily performed by its operators. The X-MET7000’s real value is in its ability to quickly and accurately determine the composition of incoming alloys in order for Powell Valves to be fully confident that they are supplying the quality products that their customers have become accustomed to. Inspection of Over Molded - Encapsulated Medical Devices Over Molded and Encapsulated medical devices present a difficult challenge when investigating process issues or returns from the field due to the nature of their design. Visual inspection and electrical tests provide very little information as to why the assembly failed internally.Destructive testing is a viable alternative to visual and electrical tests but often destroys the assembly and can easily obliterate or mask the actual component failure. If your intent is to repair the assembly and return it to the customer, the process of quoting the repair can become much more costly for you and your customer if you only use these three test modes in you evaluation and repair quote. Scienscope has solved these problems for numerous medical device manufactures by providing x-ray systems that allow the user to quickly inspect an assembly and make an informed decision in the control of a process or repair of the assembly. One manufacture was doing a visual inspection and electrical test before quoting the customer on the repair of a very expensive encapsulated assembly, by using the x-ray system for initial inspection they were able to reduce their labor costs in the evaluation phase and provide the customer with a faster and more accurate repair quote. Another manufacturer was visually inspecting over molded components and using a time consuming process of painstakingly removing the over molded materiel to revel the suspect area, x-ray inspection saved tens of thousands of dollars in overtime costs per year. SONATEST: Strong Global Brand, Products & Partners Half a Decade Pioneering Ultrasonics Since 1958 and as a privately owned company, Sonatest has grown to become one of the most respected suppliers of ultrasonic NDT instruments in the world.Our products are used by some of the world’s leading companies such as Boeing, Airbus, Shell, Eon, Network Rail and many others. Simplicity | Capability | Reliability Sonatest has a long history of product innovation, design and market leadership: patent rights’ owner of the first and unique rolling phased array probe (WheelProbe)1, awarded best in class by the internationally and recognized Red Dot Design Award and A-Award for product design (PRISMA)2 and first to design and manufacture an IP67 ultrasonic flaw detector in the world (Sitescan)3. Built at one of our company sites across the UK, USA and Canada, our products are carefully designed to give the user a powerful tool that is easy to use and will withstand the harsh environments in which NDT is carried out. At Sonatest, we are Ultrasonics Experts and our product offering is covering all aspects of NDT requirements for performance ultrasonic equipment: thickness gages, probes, flaw detectors for conventional UT, Phased Array and TOFD techniques, scanners and accessories. Global Presence | Personalized Service Over the years, Sonatest has developed durable partnerships with local and recognized NDT experts over the world: 110 representatives available in +50 countries over the 5 continents! With a sales and customer service center based in San Antonio, Texas, Sonatest is proud to work in close relationship with more than 35 professional and independent representatives to serve you from South to North Americas!
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