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    Radiography of Weldments in Motion

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    In the spring of 1956, the Douglas Aircraft Co. was awarded a U. S. Air Force contract to fabricate Thor, the intermediate-range ballistic missile. A major problem facing the company's nondestructive testing group was to provide methods for the X-ray inspection of large tank weldments. This was imperative in order to meet schedule requirements for reliability, timely delivery of missile components, and to keep costs commensurate with those of an average product development. Conventional X-ray techniques seemed impractical and inadequate to meet requirements. Because of this, the radiography of weldments in motion (Fig. 1) was conceived by the Douglas Co. Trial exposures of a prepared weld sample were performed, using the standard and the in-motion techniques. Results compared so favorably that the in-motion technique was chosen for production inspection. Before the project could proceed, an X-ray laboratory had to be built and special equipment had to be purchased or designed. Because packaged strip film was not available, the Douglas Co. designed and built a machine to cassette 70-mm film (Fig. 2).

    Author Information:

    Hitt, W. C.
    Douglas Aircraft Co., Santa Monica, Calif.

    Hagemaier, D. J.
    Douglas Aircraft Co., Santa Monica, Calif.

    Committee/Subcommittee: E07.06

    DOI: 10.1520/STP46356S