Standard Active Last Updated: Jun 23, 2021 Track Document
ASTM G32-16(2021)e1

Standard Test Method for Cavitation Erosion Using Vibratory Apparatus

Standard Test Method for Cavitation Erosion Using Vibratory Apparatus G0032-16R21E01 ASTM|G0032-16R21E01|en-US Standard Test Method for Cavitation Erosion Using Vibratory Apparatus Standard new BOS Vol. 03.02 Committee G02
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Significance and Use

5.1 This test method may be used to estimate the relative resistance of materials to cavitation erosion as may be encountered, for instance, in pumps, hydraulic turbines, hydraulic dynamometers, valves, bearings, diesel engine cylinder liners, ship propellers, hydrofoils, and in internal flow passages with obstructions. An alternative method for similar purposes is Test Method G134, which employs a cavitating liquid jet to produce erosion on a stationary specimen. The latter may be more suitable for materials not readily formed into a precisely shaped specimen. The results of either, or any, cavitation erosion test should be used with caution; see 5.8.

5.2 Some investigators have also used this test method as a screening test for materials subjected to liquid impingement erosion as encountered, for instance, in low-pressure steam turbines and in aircraft, missiles or spacecraft flying through rainstorms. Test Method G73 describes another testing approach specifically intended for that type of environment.

5.3 This test method is not recommended for evaluating elastomeric or compliant coatings, some of which have been successfully used for protection against cavitation or liquid impingement of moderate intensity. This is because the compliance of the coating on the specimen may reduce the severity of the liquid cavitation induced by its vibratory motion. The result would not be representative of a field application, where the hydrodynamic generation of cavitation is independent of the coating.

Note 1: An alternative approach that uses the same basic apparatus, and is deemed suitable for compliant coatings, is the “stationary specimen” method. In that method, the specimen is fixed within the liquid container, and the vibrating tip of the horn is placed in close proximity to it. The cavitation “bubbles” induced by the horn (usually fitted with a highly resistant replaceable tip) act on the specimen. While several investigators have used this approach (see X4.2.3), they have differed with regard to standoff distances and other arrangements. The stationary specimen approach can also be used for brittle materials which can not be formed into a threaded specimen nor into a disc that can be cemented to a threaded specimen, as required for this test method (see 7.6).

5.4 This test method should not be directly used to rank materials for applications where electrochemical corrosion or solid particle impingement plays a major role. However, adaptations of the basic method and apparatus have been used for such purposes (see 9.2.5, 9.2.6, and X4.2). Guide G119 may be followed in order to determine the synergism between the mechanical and electrochemical effects.

5.5 Those who are engaged in basic research, or concerned with very specialized applications, may need to vary some of the test parameters to suit their purposes. However, adherence to this test method in all other respects will permit a better understanding and correlation between the results of different investigators.

5.6 Because of the nonlinear nature of the erosion-versus-time curve in cavitation and liquid impingement erosion, the shape of that curve must be considered in making comparisons and drawing conclusions. See Section 11.

5.7 The results of this test may be significantly affected by the specimen’s surface preparation. This must be considered in planning, conducting and reporting a test program. See also 7.4 and 12.2.

5.8 The mechanisms of cavitation erosion and liquid impingement erosion are not fully understood and may differ, depending on the detailed nature, scale, and intensity of the liquid/solid interactions. “Erosion resistance” may, therefore, represent a mix of properties rather than a single property, and has not yet been successfully correlated with other independently measurable material properties. For this reason, the consistency of results between different test methods or under different field conditions is not very good. Small differences between two materials are probably not significant, and their relative ranking could well be reversed in another test.

5.9 If a test program must deviate from the standard specifications for apparatus, test specimens, or test conditions, the reasons shall be explained, and the results characterized as obtained by “ASTM Test Method G32 modified.” See also 5.4, 5.5, and 12.1.


1.1 This test method covers the production of cavitation damage on the face of a specimen vibrated at high frequency while immersed in a liquid. The vibration induces the formation and collapse of cavities in the liquid, and the collapsing cavities produce the damage to and erosion (material loss) of the specimen.

1.2 Although the mechanism for generating fluid cavitation in this method differs from that occurring in flowing systems and hydraulic machines (see 5.1), the nature of the material damage mechanism is believed to be basically similar. The method therefore offers a small-scale, relatively simple and controllable test that can be used to compare the cavitation erosion resistance of different materials, to study in detail the nature and progress of damage in a given material, or—by varying some of the test conditions—to study the effect of test variables on the damage produced.

1.3 This test method specifies standard test conditions covering the diameter, vibratory amplitude and frequency of the specimen, as well as the test liquid and its container. It permits deviations from some of these conditions if properly documented, that may be appropriate for some purposes. It gives guidance on setting up a suitable apparatus and covers test and reporting procedures and precautions to be taken. It also specifies standard reference materials that must be used to verify the operation of the facility and to define the normalized erosion resistance of other test materials.

1.4 A history of this test method is given in Appendix X4, followed by a comprehensive bibliography.

1.5 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses after SI units are provided for information only and are not considered standard.

1.6 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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. For specific safety warning information, see 6.1, 10.3, and 10.6.1.

1.7 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.

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Book of Standards Volume: 03.02
Developed by Subcommittee: G02.10
Pages: 20
DOI: 10.1520/G0032-16R21E01
ICS Code: 77.060