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GE Inspection Technologies

Application Solutions

Date: August 2004

Nondestructive measurement of
hardness penetration depth



Your solution

The task consists in measuring hardness

penetration depths in the nondestructive
mode in order to save costs for conventional destructive testing on the one
hand and, on the other hand, to enable
the performance of a higher number of

To solve this test problem, the ultrasonic

backscattering method is recommended.
This method is based on the fact that
thermally hardened zones have a ner
grain structure than the unhardened base
material. If an ultrasonic wavelength,
slightly greater than the grain size in the
hardened area and slightly smaller than
the grain size in the unhardened area, is
now selected, scattered echoes are produced from the coarse-grained structure
in the transition zone.

What you need

Ultrasonic aw detector: USLT 2000

Software: USLT-EHT
Probe: the probe geometry is
matched to the components geometry
and its frequency is dependent on
the material microstructure

The signals scattered from the grain

boundaries can in principle be read and
evaluated by means of a normal ultrasonic
instrument, e.g. by means of the USM 25.
The USLT-EHT software is now also available for fast and easy evaluation. This program can be loaded as additional software
(plug-in) to the USLT2000 program.
The hardness penetration depth plug-in is
at rst used for smoothing the waveform
of the scattered echoes, after which the
hardness penetration depth is measured

on the basis of the variable threshold value. The value for the hardness
penetration depth is displayed either in
millimeters or in inches.
The setting of the threshold value can
easily be calibrated for a basic measurement using a conventional mechanical
measurement for hardness.
For different applications, the probe
must be adapted to the geometry, e.g.
of a crankshaft or a camshaft, and the
frequency to the microstructure of the
material under test.

How you benet

Ensure a high quality rating
Reduce eld failures and
potential liability
Save money by eliminating
destructive testing
Save money by improving
your process


GE Inspection Technologies

Fig. 1: Principle of ultrasonic backscattering in the transition zone

Fig. 2: USLT 2000 with plugin for the measurement of

hardness penetration depth

Contact our global Application Centers for solutions to your inspection problems
North American Center
Lewistown, PA
Don Henry

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Coventry, England
Dr. Sue Oaten

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Cincinnati, OH
Tammie Johnson

European Center
Cologne, Germany
Dr. Werner Roye

France Center
Limonest, France
Michel Hervier

European X-ray Center

Ahrensburg, Germany
Dr. Matthias Purschke

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Shanghai, China
Robert Lee
+86-21-5050-4666 ext. 1275

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Houston, TX
Opening Fall 2004

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Bergen, Belgium
Kris Marstboom

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