What Is Nondestructive Testing?

Nondestructive testing (NDT) is the process of inspecting, testing, or evaluating materials, components or assemblies for discontinuities, or differences in characteristics without destroying the serviceability of the part or system.

NDT is particularly more effective in testing continuities or mapping material characteristics as compared to destructive test which is usually done on a limited number of sampling test. Today modern nondestructive tests are used in different field such as construction, manufacturing, fabrication and in-service inspections for different purposes such as product integrity & uniformity, mapping of materials, localization of defects, health and quality of structures.

NDT Test Methods

Test method names often refer to the type of penetrating medium or the equipment used to perform that test. The increasing popular NDT method are mainly Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) and Ultrasonic Testing (UT). One being sensitive towards metallic objects and another for voids due to the nature of the emitting source.

There are others NDT methods being developed for different usage including:

  • Acoustic Emission Testing (AE),
  • Electromagnetic Testing (ET),
  • Guided Wave Testing (GW),
  • Laser Testing Methods (LM),
  • Leak Testing (LT),
  • Magnetic Flux Leakage (MFL),
  • Microwave Testing, Liquid Penetrant Testing (PT),
  • Magnetic Particle Testing (MT),
  • Neutron Radiographic Testing (NR),
  • Radiographic Testing (RT),
  • Thermal/Infrared Testing (IR),
  • Vibration Analysis (VA) and
  • Visual Testing (VT).