2013 IR&D Annual Report

EDAS-MS Upgrade and Demonstration Program, 18-R8367

Principal Investigators
Jay L. Fisher
Alan Schaefer

Inclusive Dates: 01/16/13 – 05/16/13

Background — SwRI has supplied EDAS® systems for more than 25 years to provide a highly efficient means of data acquisition and analysis for ultrasonic inspection of nuclear power plant reactor pressure vessels and associated piping. The most recent redesign of EDAS hardware to support these requirements was launched in 2010, with support from SwRI internal research program (project 18-R8163). That redesign (EDAS-MS) was used to manufacture three large systems (two for clients), as well as ensuring that SwRI can support these and other previously delivered systems for years to come. Recently SwRI learned that a client with previous-generation EDAS systems was very interested in obtaining a new inspection system. The client was in the process of evaluating available systems in the market, developing the specifications for their new system, and training their users in a facility that could be rented for a limited time. Therefore, this project was set up to allow the client to evaluate EDAS-MS and its potential for integration with their existing mechanized equipment in the limited time slot that could be made available.

Approach — To allow the client to evaluate the system for their needs, it was necessary to double the number of data acquisition channels from four to eight and to more than double the data acquisition rate per channel, to increase the allowed mechanical scanner speed from 50 mm/second to 250 mm/sec. These improvements were made using existing hardware and by modifying previously developed software.

Accomplishments — The upgraded system was taken to the client site. Tests performed by SwRI personnel and the client resulted in all specifications being met. The client has accepted this system as suitable for use with their next-generation mechanical scanner.

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Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 10 technical divisions.