Applus+ RTD was founded in 1937 and has since grown to be one of the largest inspection companies globally. With more than 12,500 specialized employees they provide testing, inspection and certification (TIC) services to the energy sector and associated industries.

Mr. Eric Vogel is the head of electronic engineering and has been with Applus+ RTD since 1996. He started as an airplane technician and has always worked with X-ray and non-destructive testing.

Mr. Frans Sprenger is a service engineer who has been with Applus+ RTD for 39 years. He has always worked in the service department, ensuring that the systems are up and running and ready for field inspection.

Both Eric and Frans years ago started working with the Andrex CMA, the Y.SMART, and then moved on to the SMART EVO.

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Selecting A Dye Penetrant Method

Three steps to narrow down a penetrant method through  governing specifications, part composition, and test parts.

Governing specifications and work procedures often dictate the penetrant method type. Selection of the penetrant method is based on the part’s end use, safety considerations, part composition, surface finish, and any important factors specific to the part. Selection of the correct penetrant method is important to not only comply with specifications but to detect surface breaking indications on the parts easily. The selection of the correct penetrant method along with the correct sensitivity level will result in confidently detecting the indications that can be found in the inspected parts


Penetrant Methods

  • Method A: Water washable
  • Method B: Post emulsifiable, lipophilic
  • Method C: Solvent removable
  • Method D: Post emulsifiable, hydrophilic

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UV-A Intensity: What’s Special About 5,000 µW?

Most UV-A lamps on the market are set to provide 5,000 µW/cm2 at a distance of 15 in / 38 cm. What’s so special about those numbers?

hysics of Light

Light intensity follows an inverse-square law. Say there’s a bright lamp that’s one meter away from you. If you move out to 2 meters, the light from the lamp won’t be half as bright, it’ll be one quarter as bright. Going farther out to 3 meters drops it down to 1/9th the original intensity. It works the same way as you move closer too. The same lamp will be 4 times as bright 50 cm away, and 16 times as bright at only 25 cm. What this means for us is that the distance to the lamp is just as important as the amount of light it puts out.

To compare the intensity of UV-A lamps in fluorescent inspection, our industry has set a standard distance of 15 in / 38 cm as a benchmark. Using a standard distance, the relative performance of different lamps can be compared directly.
Human Vision

UV-A irradiance is required to make penetrant and magnetic particle materials fluoresce (that’s what makes them visible). The more UV-A available, the brighter the fluorescence will be. But there are limits. ASTM E2297 and E1316 define UV-A light as wavelengths between 320-400 nm and define visible light as wavelengths between 400-760 nm. But in nature, the light spectrum is continuous. There is no natural difference between what we call UV-A and what we call visible light – those are artificial divisions. Human vision, in the same way, is continuous. There’s no hard-line cutoff of what the eye can perceive, and light perception changes as we age. Younger eyes can perceive light down to 390 nm (even though we technically define that as UV-A), and if there is no other light source, even shorter wavelengths down to 380 nm can be seen as deep violet light.

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Introducing the ST700 5k Inspection Grade Overhead UV-A Flood Lamp

The ST700 5k features 5,000 μW/cm² maximum UV-A intensity at 38cm for aerospace applications that require a lower intensity than the standard ST700 unit.

The ST700 projects an ultra-wide, even beam of UV-A light straight onto the inspection area, allowing for quick examination of parts with minimal part handling. The high intensity beam makes indications stand out bright and clear, speeding up the inspection process. The ST700 is certified to NDT standards for LED UV lamps and certified for Aerospace Prime and OEM specifications for emission spectrum and beam profile.

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NDT-Approved Petroleum Base Suspension Vehicle

Carrier II is a high-purity NDT-approved suspension vehicle developed specifically for wet method magnetic particle testing.

This petroleum distillate carrier oil provides excellent particle mobility, good suspension stability and enhanced corrosion protection for reliable, spec-compliant mag particle inspections.

Carrier II is made with highly refined petroleum oil with virtually no odor for improved operator comfort, while the high flash point and low toxicity reduce EHS concerns.

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Exposing 10 Common Misunderstandings about Penetrant Testing

The liquid penetrant method of nondestructive testing has been used since the 1940’s. But even after being used by generations of NDT professionals, there are still some common areas of confusion or misunderstanding.

Here we set the record straight on 10 misperceptions we’ve seen in the field in recent years.

1. The highest sensitivity penetrant is the best penetrant for my application

The best penetrant for an application is the one that finds the right indications with the least amount of money and time. Sometimes this means not using the highest sensitivity penetrant.

While it is true that a higher sensitivity penetrant will produce indications for very small discontinuities, a higher sensitivity penetrant will probably not give you the best inspection results if you only need to find medium discontinuities since you will see far more indications than are relevant to the inspection.

To start selecting a penetrant, review any governing specifications and work procedures for required sensitivity levels.

Take into consideration the surface finish and configuration of the part.

A high sensitivity level fluorescent penetrant is appropriate for smooth, highly machined surfaces. However, a high sensitivity level fluorescent penetrant may leave excessive fluorescent background on a rough cast part, making inspection difficult. 

A lower sensitivity fluorescent penetrant is a better choice for rough surfaces.

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Read about how the compact SMART EVO fits perfectly into Dyno Nobel’s solution. Facility Manager Neil Hopkinson talks about how their productivity has increased when inspecting detonators for the mining industry at their site located in Toowoomba in Australia.

AXT Pty Ltd, the dedicated YXLON Copenhagen distributor in Australia, supplied a SMART EVO 160D radiographic system to Dyno Nobel Asia-Pacific, one of the top Australian manufacturers of detonators for the mining industry.

When asked about the new SMART EVO 160D system and why they chose it, Facility Manager Neil Hopkinson replied; “Two factors influenced our decision. The systems compact size and ability to fit into our existing inspection enclosure was essential. The power was also important, and in this case, we specifically needed a system which also can operate efficiently in a low kV range as most of our work is carried out at low kV”.

9 Magnetic Particle Technique Requirements to Document for Nadcap

“Say what you do and do what you say.” That’s a quick way of describing how quality systems work. Processes are documented in procedures (Say what you do), and regular audits verify that those procedures are being followed (Do what you say).

For Nadcap-accredited suppliers doing magnetic particle inspection (MPI), the second part can be the most difficult. Over the past year, the #1 non-conformance found by Nadcap auditors was demonstrating that parts were properly magnetized in accordance with the procedure or technique sheet. To demonstrate proper magnetization, first you need to know what’s in the procedure.

Written procedures for magnetic particle inspection must refer to the governing standard and must be approved by the responsible Level III. There are a lot of details required to spec out the full process, including part identification, materials used, process control checks, pre- and post-processing, and marking of parts after examination.

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Introducing the new QB2-Plus Quick Break Tester & Shot Timer

Magnaflux is pleased to announce the new QB2-Plus Quick Break Test & Shot Timer to our line of mag particle testing meters. The QB2-Plus will help you check and measure the performance of your magnetic bench, electromagnetic current generator or other magnetizing equipment as part of your regular system performance checks.

The QB2-Plus provides a quantitative measure of Quick Break performance for three-phase FWDC equipment, and it can be used with all coil sizes. But unlike the previous model, the QB2-Plus is also capable of measuring the shot time for any magnetic particle equipment including AC, half-wave DC, single- and three-phase full-wave DC, and multi-directional units.

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