Advances in techniques for the ultrasonic monitoring of the cleanliness of steel

Guo, Y.; Spore, C.; Margetan, F. J.; Thompson, R. B.; Ahmad, A.
May 2000
AIP Conference Proceedings;2000, Vol. 509 Issue 1, p1441
Academic Journal
Ultrasonic techniques are of considerable interest in characterizing the cleanliness of steel billet. As compared to metallographic techniques, their ability to rapidly sample significant volumes of material in a nondestructive fashion is particularly attractive. A recent set of results is described in which physically based models of the ultrasonic inspection are used to guide technique optimization. Models are used for three purposes. Beam models are used to select transducer parameters which will be minimally affected by the cylindrical geometry of the billet surface, which defocusses the beam in a plane perpendicular to the billet axis. Flaw response models are used to predict the strength of signals from undesirable inclusions, in particular those consisting of highly brittle material such as alumina which can lead to premature failure. For microstructures of a given type and grain size, microstructural response models are used to predict grain noise levels which in turn lead to estimates of the minimum detectable inclusion size. This information can be used to guide pre-inspection heat treatment. As an example of the integrated use of these tools, the design of a system to inspect 3 inch diameter billet used for the manufacture of gears will be discussed.—This work was supported by the NSF Industry/University Cooperative Research program. © 2000 American Institute of Physics.


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