Nikon Metrology has announced that the latest version of its Inspect-X software includes a new offset CT reconstruction algorithm. According to the company, this allows for non-destructive inspection of large components as well as higher geometric magnification.
When using X-ray CT (computed tomography) for non-destructive quality control of larger components like aluminium castings or battery modules for electrical vehicles, the challenge is to shorten inspection cycle times without compromising resolution. One prerequisite for achieving this is high X-ray intensity, or flux.
Offset CT is a scanning method that allows small or large components to be inspected fully while only part of the sample is within the field of view (FOV) during rotation. The component is placed such that only just over half of the object lies within the X-ray cone beam, allowing a much wider FOV and reconstruction volume, the company explained. Compared with traditional CT, this has two main benefits for component inspection. First, larger components, even those wider than the detector itself, can be scanned without having to use a larger CT machine. Secondly, it allows the component to be placed much closer to the X-ray source, allowing higher magnification and therefore significantly increased voxel resolution. Consequently, a broader range of sample sizes can be scanned at high resolution.
It is therefore easier to perform a wide range of critical inspection tasks including identification of small internal defects, measuring features in the interior of complex components, or detecting deviations from a nominal CAD model, even when dealing with large components.
The new offset CT module is available on all Nikon Metrology X-ray CT systems from 180kV through to 450kV.