radiographic inspection

Radiographic Inspection 101

A Guide to RPI for Industrial Metal Testing

Radiographic metal testing (RPI) is a non-destructive testing method using X-ray technology to inspect industrial materials and components. Like all NDT methods, radiographic inspection reveals defects and irregularities that could compromise the quality and safety of the tested materials.

Radiographic inspection offers several exclusive advantages other methods don't offer, though these advantages may not be necessary for every application. This guide will teach you all about radiographic inspection and help you determine if radiography is the best choice for your metal-testing needs.

What Is the Radiographic Inspection Process?

Radiographic inspection uses X-rays to view the internal structure of the material or object being inspected. The X-rays identify flaws such as cracks, inclusions, and other irregularities within metal components. This process allows for thorough record-keeping by generating images of the inspected material can be documented for future reference. Radiographic inspection plays a crucial role in industries like automotive, aerospace, and maritime manufacturing, making sure critical components and parts are safe and reliable.

Brief History of Radiographic Non-Destructive Metal Testing

Radiographic inspection has been used for well over a century, with the first X-ray testing methods dating back to 1895. Over the decades, RPI became more refined, establishing itself as a reliable NDT process for testing the metal equipment used in World War I and World War II.

Today, radiographic inspection has progressed to a sophisticated process that provides detailed imaging of surface and sub-surface flaws. It is a reliable process, producing clear results for a wide range of materials and parts. These advanced benefits have made radiographic inspection a preferred NDT method in many industries over the past century.

The Advantages of Using Radiography for Metal Inspection

While there are multiple NDT methods, each with unique advantages, Radiographic testing offers several key benefits:

  • Surface & Subsurface Inspection: Radiographic testing can detect internal flaws deeper than other methods, making it ideal for inspecting welds, castings, and components requiring a thorough internal structure examination.
  • Non-Destructive Testing for Various Metals: Unlike some testing methods that are limited to specific metal families, radiographic metal testing can inspect a broad range of materials, including steel, aluminum, copper, and more.
  • Can Identify Various Defect Types: Detects several types of defects, including cracks, porosity, inclusions, and corrosion.
  • Digital Permanent Records: RPI creates a visual record of a metal piece's internal structure for future reference and comparisons. American Metal Testing (AMT) utilizes film processed images that are easily accessible.

Considerations to Determine If RPI is the Best NDT Method for Your Metal Testing Needs

While radiographic inspection offers several benefits that are essential for many demanding industrial applications, it may not be the most optimal method for your particular application. Radiographic inspection is typically more costly than fluorescent penetrant inspection or magnetic particle inspection, as it requires sophisticated imaging equipment and highly skilled technical operation. RPI also requires more time than other methods to assess the materials. If tight turnaround times and low cost are essential for your application, other NDT methods might be ideal.

Industries That Utilize Radiography's X-Ray Capabilities for NDT

Multiple industries rely on RPI's X-ray inspections to prevent defects, leaks, and other failures possibly compromising the performance of industrial parts. From structural components in construction applications to automotive parts for public transportation, radiographic testing is crucial for ensuring the reliability and safety of metal materials. Industries that depend on RPI include:

  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Construction
  • Manufacturing/OEM
  • Marine
  • Military
  • Oil and gas
  • Power generation
  • Transportation
  • And more

AMT Is Your Trusted Partner in Radiographic Metal Testing

American Metal Testing is a leading provider of non-destructive testing (NDT) services, including radiographic metal testing. We offer comprehensive NDT services for a wide range of metal components, from machine parts to metal castings. When you choose American Metal Testing for your radiographic inspection services, you can count on:

  • Unwavering commitment to quality
  • Highly qualified NDT professionals with extensive experience
  • Industry-leading testing services, including FPI, MPI, and RPI
  • Efficient inspections for minimal order turnaround time

ASTM, NADCAP, & More Industrial Metal Testing Certifications

As a NADCAP-accredited facility, we provide radiographic inspection services to top manufacturers nationwide. Our RPI services are performed in accordance with the strictest industry standards, including ASTM, AMS, ASME, SAE, ANSI, AWS, and MIL specifications.

Contact Us to Get Radiographic Inspection Services for Your Metal Components

Contact us to explore how our radiographic testing services and other NDT processes can benefit your industrial metal components. You can also request a quote for pricing estimates for your application. For all your industrial metal testing needs, choose American Metal Testing.