- Conference date: 22–25 July 2008
- Location: Chicago (Illinois)
As US Air Force (USAF) aircraft continue to age, additional inspections are required for structural components. The validation of new inspections typically requires a capability demonstration of the method using representative structure with representative damage. To minimize the time and cost required to prepare such samples, Electric Discharge machined (EDM) notches are commonly used to represent fatigue cracks in validation studies. However, the sensitivity to damage typically changes as a function of damage type. This requires a mathematical relationship to be developed between the responses from the two different flaw types to enable the use of EDM notched samples to validate new inspections. This paper reviews progress to develop transfer functions for surface scanning eddy current inspections of aluminum and titanium alloys found in structural aircraft components. Multiple samples with well characterized grown fatigue cracks and master gages with EDM notches, both with a range of flaw sizes, were used to collect flaw signals with USAF field inspection equipment. Analysis of this empirical data was used to develop a transfer function between the response from the EDM notches and grown fatigue cracks.
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