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Appendix 5

Rev 2 April 2013

Appendix 5
Copyright  TWI Ltd 2013

Appendix 5
Macro and Micro Visual Inspection
Macro-etching a specimen is etched and evaluated macrostructurally at low
magnifications, is frequently used for evaluating carbon and low alloy steel
products such as billets, bars, blooms and forgings as well as welds. There
are several procedures for rating a steel specimen by a graded series of
photographs showing the incidence of certain conditions and is applicable to
carbon and low alloy steels. A number of different etching reagents may be
used depending upon the type of examination. Steels react differently to
etching reagents because of variations in chemical composition, method of
manufacture, heat treatment and many other variables.

Macro-examinations are also performed on a polished and etched

cross-section of a welded material. During the examination a number of
features can be determined including weld run sequence, important for weld
procedure qualifications tests. Any defects on the sample will be assessed
for compliance with relevant specifications: Slag, porosity, lack of weld
penetration, lack of sidewall fusion and poor weld profile are among the
features observed. Such defects are looked for either by standard visual
examination or at magnifications up to 5X. It is routine to photograph the
section to provide a permanent record, a photomacrograph.

Performed on samples either cut to size or mounted in a resin mould. The
samples are polished to a fine finish, normally one micron diamond paste
and usually etched in an appropriate chemical solution prior to examination
on a metallurgical microscope. Micro-examination is performed for a number
of purposes, assess the structure of the material and examine for
metallurgical and anomalies such as third phase precipitates, excessive
grain growth, etc. Many routine tests such as phase counting or grain size
determinations are performed in conjunction with micro-examinations.

Metallographic weld evaluations can take many forms. In its most simplest,
a weld deposit can be visually examined for large scale defects such as
porosity or lack of fusion defects. On a microscale, it can be phase balance
assessments from weld cap to weld root or a check for non-metallic or third
phase precipitates. Examination of weld growth patterns is also used to
determine reasons for poor mechanical test results. For example, an
extensive central columnar grain pattern can cause a plane of weakness
giving poor Charpy results.

Rev 2 April 2013
Appendix 5
Copyright  TWI Ltd 2013



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