ASTM E588 - 03(2009)

    Standard Practice for Detection of Large Inclusions in Bearing Quality Steel by the Ultrasonic Method

    Active Standard ASTM E588 | Developed by Subcommittee: A01.28

    Book of Standards Volume: 01.05


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    Significance and Use

    Comparison with Other Inclusion Rating MethodsBecause the test is performed on a volumetric rather than a surface-examination basis, the ultrasonic method is inherently better able to detect infrequently occurring large inclusions or clusters of small inclusions than eddy current, magnetic particle, microscopical, or macroscopic examination procedures.

    Limitation of Inclusion Size and TypeA limitation of the method is that it will not detect all inclusions. Inclusion chemistry, size, shape, location, and distribution may limit the ability of the method to provide indications distinct from those generated by the surrounding metallurgical structure. The recommended practice is only meaningfully applicable to examination of steel wherein the inclusion size and type are within the detection capabilities of the method. For steel wherein inclusion size, dispersion, and chemistry prevent optimum inclusion detection by ultrasonics, microscopical methods detailed in Test Methods E 45 may be applied.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice covers a procedure for the rating of rectangular steel sections by immersion ultrasonic techniques. Its purpose is to provide information on the content of large inclusions or clusters of small inclusions for determining the suitability of a steel lot for bearing applications. This practice in no manner defines or establishes limits of acceptability.

    1.2 For this document, large inclusions are defined in ultrasonic terms as those having a reflecting area equivalent to or larger than a 1/64-in. diameter flat-bottom hole in a steel reference block of similar properties and thickness. In metallographic terms, large inclusions, defined in this way, are of approximately the same size as the smallest detectable sizes revealed by the macroscopic methods of Test Methods E 45. In some cases, inclusions smaller than those described previously can be detected either individually or in clusters, depending on their type, chemical composition, orientation to the ultrasonic beam and distance from the sound entry surface of the specimen.

    1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    E45 Test Methods for Determining the Inclusion Content of Steel

    E214 Practice for Immersed Ultrasonic Testing by the Reflection Method Using Pulsed Longitudinal Waves

    E428 Practice for Fabrication and Control of Metal, Other than Aluminum, Reference Blocks Used in Ultrasonic Testing

    E543 Specification for Agencies Performing Nondestructive Testing

    E1316 Terminology for Nondestructive Examinations

    ASNT Documents

    ASNT-CP-189 STandard for Qualification and Certification of Nondestructive Testing Personnel


    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 31171500(Bearings); 11101704(Steel)


    Referencing This Standard

    DOI: 10.1520/E0588-03R09

    ASTM International is a member of CrossRef.

    Citation Format

    ASTM E588-03(2009), Standard Practice for Detection of Large Inclusions in Bearing Quality Steel by the Ultrasonic Method, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2009, www.astm.org

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