Penetrant Testing (PT)

Acuren Penetrant Testing (PT)

Dye Penetrant is an effective and relatively low-cost method for locating surface-breaking defects in non-porous materials.  

PT is typically used to inspect non-ferrous metal, plastic or ceramic components.

Acuren provides a variety of dye penetrant exams at field locations or in-house high volume parts inspection.

PrinciplesReveals surface breaking flaws in the form of bleed out of a visible or fluorescent dye. The technique is based on the ability of a liquid to be drawn into a clean surface breaking flaw by capillary action. After a period of time, known as “dwell,” excess surface penetrant is removed and a developer is applied. The developer draws the penetrant from the flaw to reveal its presence. Colored (contrast) penetrants require good white light while fluorescent penetrants need to be used in darkened conditions with an ultraviolet “black light.” Wet fluorescent liquid penetrant provides greater sensitivity.
How and where is it used?Locating surface breaking defects in non-porous materials. Inspecting parts with complex shapes and inspecting large areas or volumes of parts quickly. Stationary penetrant lines support large volume parts inspection Portable equipment also available Used on metals, glass, ceramic, rubber, plastics Aerospace, automotive and other parts.
Applicable Codes/StandardsASTM E165-09 Standard Practice for Liquid Penetrant Examination
ASTM E1220-10 Standard Practice for Visible Penetrant Testing Using Solvent Removable Process
ASTM E1209-10 Standard Practice for Fluorescent Liquid Penetrant Testing Using the Water Washable Process
ASTM E1210-10 Standard Practice for Fluorescent Liquid Penetrant Testing Using the Hydrophilic Post Emulsification Process
Form of report or deliverable?Written report summarizing observed indications.
AdvantagesRelatively simple to use High sensitivity Wide range of materials (any nonporous material can be inspected) No special viewing apparatus required Ideal for examining large areas.
LimitationsSurface preparation, including de-greasing, is necessary Some penetrants are difficult to remove Spurious indications are possible from surface blemishes Special equipment is required for fluorescent penetrant inspection Precautions must be taken with respect to handling penetrant chemicals. Precautions should also be taken with ultraviolet light (UV) to avoid excessive exposure.
Certifications of technicians performing the work?Level II Penetrant technician requires 32 hours instruction and 400 hours experience in the method.
Rope access applicable?Yes