This article first appeared in the Railway-News magazine, Issue 3 2022.
Because rail vehicles may operate through demanding conditions – such as rain and snow – as well as be exposed to rapidly changing temperatures, the lifespan of materials is a key issue in the rail industry.
In particular, the exterior coating must be able to withstand varying weather conditions, high mechanical stresses and airborne contamination while maintaining its aesthetics and protection capability.
Coatings are used for a wide variety of applications including to enhance the aesthetics of rail vehicles and to protect rail vehicles from corrosion. Although coatings can significantly increase the longevity of rail components, it is essential that they are applied properly to ensure maximal function. Specifically, thickness must be within the defined limits to ensure appropriate protection and aesthetics and minimally applied to avoid significant financial implications.
Coating inspection of rail vehicles not only ensures proper application during manufacturing but can also periodically evaluate quality, such as wear and tear of coatings and remaining thickness after rework. Ultrasonic thickness gauges offer a fast, reliable and non-destructive method for coating or substrate assessment that requires access to only one side of the test material. While ultrasonic approaches have previously been limited by their minimum thickness capabilities, Evident introduced the Olympus 72DL PLUS gauge which combines a robust design, streamlined interface, and the ability to measure thinner materials than ever before.
An ultrasonic thickness gauge measures how long it takes a sound pulse to travel through a sample (or test piece) and reflect back from the inside surface or wall. Generally, higher-frequency sound pulses enable the measurement of thinner materials.
Historically, most precision ultrasonic thickness gauges have been limited to a maximum of ~20MHz frequency and to a corresponding minimum thickness capability of ~0.005 inches (0.125mm). However, improvements to technology have allowed increasing frequencies to be used in ultrasonic thickness gauges. For instance, the 72DL PLUS gauge drives frequencies up to 125MHz to measure ultra-thin materials – as low as 0.001 inches (0.025mm).
Railway-News Magazine Issue 1, March 2022: OLYMPUS – Facilitating Proactive Maintenance of Railway Assets with Videoscope Inspection.
Railway-News magazine Issue 5, November 2021: Olympus - Non-destructive Testing for Weld Inspection – Tailored Solutions
Railway-News magazine Issue 4, September 2021: Olympus - Get Up to Speed with Railway Safety - Advanced Phased Array Technology.
The compact OmniScan™ X3 64-channel flaw detector improves the efficiency and performance of phased array and total focusing method imaging.
The new 72DL PLUS™ ultrasonic thickness gauge delivers precision thickness measurements at high speed in a portable, easy-to-use device.
Using the advanced OmniScan X3 phased array detector, inspectors can perform thorough assessments on the integrity of high-strength bolts.
The Olympus 72DL PLUS™ ultrasonic thickness gauge delivers precision thickness measurements at high speed in a portable, easy-to-use device.
OLYMPUS' EPOCH 6LT portable flaw detector is a rugged, light, and ergonomic package optimized for high-portability applications.
Olympus developed capabilities allowing onsite application testing of newly designed sensors to ensure sensor solutions meet customers' needs.
OmniScan X3 flaw detector is a varied toolbox, a feature customers love is the onboard scan plan tool. Here are 3 ways it can simplify set up.
The OLYMPUS MagnaFORM™ probe features dynamic lift-off compensation making weld inspection fast and removing paint up to 3mm thick.
Olympus' ultrasonic nondestructive testing techniques ensure the quality of the rail and components that make up the rail car.
Use the form opposite to get in touch with Evident directly to discuss any requirements you might have.