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Proceedings Paper

Thermographic qualification of graphite/epoxy instrumentation racks
Author(s): James L. Walker; Samuel S. Russell; Gary L. Workman
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Paper Abstract

A nondestructive evaluation method is desired for ensuring the 'as manufactured' and 'post service' quality of graphite/epoxy instrumentation rack shells. The damage tolerance and geometry of the racks dictate that the evaluation method be capable of identifying defects, as small as 0.25 inch2 in area, over large acreage regions, tight compound radii and thickness transition zones. The primary defects of interest include voids, inclusions, delaminations and porosity. The potential for an IR thermographic inspection to replace ultrasonic testing for qualifying the racks as 'defect free' is under investigation. The inspection process is validated by evaluating defect standard panels built to the same specifications as the racks, except for the insertion of artificially fabricated defects. The artificial defects are designed to closely match those which are most prevalent in the actual instrumentation racks. A target defect area of 0.0625 inch2 was chosen for the defect standard panels to ensure the ability to find al defects of the critical size.

Paper Details

Date Published: 31 March 1998
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 3397, Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, and Aerospace Hardware II, (31 March 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.305045
Show Author Affiliations
James L. Walker, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville (United States)
Samuel S. Russell, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Gary L. Workman, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3397:
Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, and Aerospace Hardware II
Glenn A. Geithman; Gary E. Georgeson, Editor(s)

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