Methods and systems for the differential wear mapping of the surface of an object are described. The process involves establishing a radioactive wearing surface on the object through surface layer activation (SLA) and/or radioactive ion implantation (RII) and imaging the wearing surface with conformal photographic or x-ray film to produce a first autoradiograph providing a baseline profile of the wearing surface. After subjecting the object to wear during testing the wearing surface is again imaged with conformal photographic or x-ray film to produce a second autoradiograph providing a worn profile. The first and second autoradiographs of the wearing surface are digitized and compared to produce a differential wear map of the surface of the object.
Douglas C. Eberle; Craig M. Wall; Martin B. Treuhaft