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Porosity Matters: NDE with X-ray

Cast metal parts are used across a broad range of products, and some, such as those used in automobile production must provide the highest reliability.  Producing parts through casting has many advantages such as design flexibility and relative low cost, but their strength can be compromised by a number of defects. While many casting defects can be identified through visual inspection, defects due to excessive internal porosity are best identified using X-ray inspection.   For high reliability parts, such inspection is a critical part of the quality assurance process.

Nondestructive evaluation (NDE) of cast components is essential in evaluating their quality, as well as their longevity, especially when product safety is at stake.  Such was the case when a client approached us with their inspection challenge.  Their critical automotive component, a small casting with embedded electronics, was highly reliable when properly manufactured.  However, given a certain threshold of porosity, the component neck would fail prematurely resulting in potentially catastrophic damage and risk of injury or worse.  X-ray inspection was ideal for measuring defects caused by both gas or shrinkage porosity.  Because of the scale of production, an off line manual inspection, while effective in identifying defects, just wouldn’t get the job done.

Working closely with their team, we succeeded in developing a solution that would meet both their quality control as well as production needs.  The inline X-ray inspection system easily managed the flow of parts, rapidly inspecting each.  A custom algorithm was developed, and was capable of accurately and reliably measuring porosity, including microporosity, within the cast components.   Automated inspection provided fast and accurate inspection, as well as valuable data and traceability.  In order to prevent failed product from reaching their customer, substandard parts were immediately quarantined within the system.

Whether your quality control challenge involves castings or other manufacturing processes, Creative Electron can help.  Connect with our team today to learn what’s possible with a bit of creativity.
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