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ASTM International Nondestructive Testing Committee Supports Data Interoperability with New Standard, “Connect-a-Thon” Events


Biannual collaborative events and a new standard are helping companies that make or use nondestructive testing (NDT) equipment with their efforts to evaluate whether those systems have interoperable data that can be shared and analyzed. These efforts ultimately help support safety and performance of products and parts for industries such as aerospace, automotive, energy, rail, and other manufacturing fields.

“Connect-a-thon” Events 

The nondestructive testing committee (E07) is holding biannual “connect-a-thon” events for those who use “digital imaging and communication in nondestructive evaluation” (DICONDE). These open forums – held in conjunction with the committee’s regular January and June meetings – allow DICONDE software developers to network and learn from each other.

“Many NDT system providers have found success validating their interoperability with peer NDT systems,” says ASTM International E07.11 subcommittee vice-chairman Andrew Ferro of GE Aviation. “The connect-a-thon events allow vendors to connect and test the core elements of the communications protocol with other vendors’ software. This ensures that their customers will have no problem interconnecting various solutions for their inspection and archival needs.”  

In addition to peer-to-peer connections through local networks, the events address topics such as image sending, database queries, ping communication, modality testing, and verification and validation of interoperability.

Participants have included Aycan, Baker Hughes (GE), Carestream, Duerr, Fuji Film, and North Star Imaging.

Ferro says that inspection system providers and purchasers have experienced improvements and more interoperability verifications because of the connect-a-thons, including at the most recent January event.

NDT system purchasers and providers are encouraged to participate in connect-a-thon events.  “Purchasers benefit by ensuring DICONDE compliance among their NDT equipment – and especially when several pieces of NDT equipment are used in a single solution,” says Ferro. “NDT system providers can benefit by ensuring interoperability with other systems and marketing their products as such.” Typical types of connections are scanners to evaluation software, scanners to NDT archives, and archives to evaluation software.

New Standard

A new standardized practice (E3147) from the committee will be used to help evaluate, verify, and validate whether a system complies with DICONDE interoperability. It applies to radiographic, ultrasonic, and eddy current examination instruments and systems. 

Ferro notes that the standard aims to help archiving and perform analytics for various types of NDT data coming from many inspection system vendors, each of which saved data in unique proprietary formats.

“The digital world is becoming ever more interconnected and the nondestructive testing community is no exception,” he says.

To purchase this or other standards, contact ASTM International customer relations (tel +1.877.909.ASTM;

For more information on DICONDE, see this page. To participate in the continued development of this and other standards, or to participate in the next connect-a-thon, plan to attend the committee’s next meeting June 24-28 in San Diego.

Media Inquiries: Dan Bergels, tel +1.610.832.9602;
Committee Contact: Kathleen Chalfin, tel +1.610.832.9717; 

Release #10507

March 15, 2018

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