The NDC facility at LLNL has several water tanks in which specimens up to a meter in size can be submerged and imaged with ultrasound equipment. In addition, we have a variety of ultrasonic sensors that can be deployed at the requestor's site. For example, a phased-array ultrasonic testing (PAUT) system has been fielded at LLNL in support of Sierra Nevada containment-vessel inspection. For more information, click here. A comparison of ultrasonic testing (UT) and x-ray computed tomography (CT) is shown in the first figure to the right.
Another use of ultrasonic testing (second figure at right) is to inspect Graded Density Impactors (GDIs), which are disks with varying impedance tailored to produce a specific shock input into a gas-gun target upon impact. Ultrasonic inspections ensure GDI integrity and verify material properties following manufacturing. This graphic shows two GDI scans – one part is manufactured well and the other shows interior cracking.
Click the images on the right to view enlarged versions