Development of a manual air-coupled ultrasonic inspection instrument for use on aeronautical structures under in-service conditions

A. Gachagan, S. Kelly, M. Altman, E. Grauvogl, G. Hayward, Robert Banks, Thomas Mccunnie, David Skillen

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This paper describes the development programme for a portable non-contact inspection system, suitable for in-service inspection of aeronautical structures. The instrument is powered from a re-chargeable battery pack which provides over six hours of continuous usage. The transducer front end is a lightweight, hand-held assembly in which a pair of piezocomposite transducers are housed. Angular adjustment of the transducers enables the instrument to operate into a variety of materials, with metallic and composite materials of primary interest. Importantly, a single channel oscilloscope has, been incorporated to provide visual interpretation of the processed received signal. Defect detection is demonstrated in a number of aerospace samples, with the resultant C-scans presented where appropriate.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2002
Event29th Annual Review of Progress in Quantitative Nondestructive Evaluation - Bellingham, United States
Duration: 14 Jul 200219 Jul 2002


Conference29th Annual Review of Progress in Quantitative Nondestructive Evaluation
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • development
  • manual
  • air-coupled
  • ultrasonic inspection instrument
  • aeronautical structures
  • in-service conditions
  • composite transducers
  • NDE

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