NTS Chesapeake Testing

X-Ray CT Scanning & Digital Radiograpy

X-ray computed tomography scanning, or X-ray CT scanning, has proven to be a very powerful tool in the field of non-destructive testing. NTS Chesapeake has the capability to obtain highly detailed 3D images of the internal components of materials and products, thus eliminating the need for costly and time-consuming destructive inspection.

We operate one of the most powerful, high-resolution X-ray CT systems in use today. A large walk-in 450kV microfocus system enables large objects (up to 37 inches in diameter) to be imaged with extremely high resolution. This system, combined with Chesapeake’s other X-ray capabilities and state-of-the-art processing and visualization tools, allows this technology to solve numerous problems spanning many different industries.

Industrial X-ray CT scanning, much like medical CAT scanning, begins with acquiring multiple X-ray projection images a full, or partial, 360 degrees around an object. These projection images are then reconstructed into a full 3D volumetric data set. Unlike medical CAT scanning, there is no human patient being exposed in the industrial X-ray CT scanner, therefore higher levels of radiation are used, still benign to the test sample, that allow for penetration though denser materials and higher resolution data than typical medical scans.

Image: Chesapeake Testing’s walk-in 450kV microfocus X-ray CT scanning system, capable of accommodating larger objects up to 37” in diameter.

This 3D volumetric data set contains information from all areas of the object, including hidden or internal features and surfaces. The data can then be further interrogated and segmented in order to visually and analytically evaluate the test object. Analytical data can include both dimensional (CAD data) and material information (density and void content). Additional tools are constantly being developed and implemented, by Chesapeake Testing, that allow for even more specific analysis including fiber orientation characterization for fabrics and composite materials, as well as FEA mesh integration for computational material analysis.

Images: Images from X-ray CT data of a shot ceramic body armor plate (top-left). In the 3D cutaway image (top), cracking can be visualized and quantified in three dimensions and remnants of the projectile core can been seen. Virtual cross sections (bottom) can be taken anywhere in the sample, further visualize the damage.