Standard Active Last Updated: Jan 13, 2021 Track Document
ASTM E2534-20

Standard Practice for Targeted Defect Detection Using Process Compensated Resonance Testing Via Swept Sine Input for Metallic and Non-Metallic Parts

Standard Practice for Targeted Defect Detection Using Process Compensated Resonance Testing Via Swept Sine Input for Metallic and Non-Metallic Parts E2534-20 ASTM|E2534-20|en-US Standard Practice for Targeted Defect Detection Using Process Compensated Resonance Testing Via Swept Sine Input for Metallic and Non-Metallic Parts Standard new BOS Vol. 03.04 Committee E07
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Significance and Use

5.1 PCRT Applications and Capabilities—PCRT has been applied successfully to a wide range of NDT applications in the manufacture and maintenance of metallic and non-metallic parts. Examples of anomalies detected are discussed in 1.1. PCRT has been shown to provide cost effective and accurate NDT solutions in many industries including automotive, aerospace, and power generation. Examples of successful applications currently employed in commercial use include, but are not limited to:

(1) Silicon nitride bearing elements

(2) Steel, iron, and aluminum rocker and control arms

(3) Aircraft and industrial gas turbine engine components (blades, vanes, disks)

(4) Cast cylinder heads and cylinder blocks

(5) Sintered powder metal gears and clutch plates

(6) Machined forged steel steering and transmission components (gears, shafts, racks)

(7) Ceramic oxygen sensors

(8) Silicon wafers

(9) Gears, including those with induction hardened or carburized teeth

(10) Ceramic matrix composite (CMC) material samples and components

(11) Components with shot peened surfaces

(12) Machined or rolled-formed fasteners

(13) Components made with additive manufacturing

(14) Aircraft landing gear, wheel, and brake components

(15) Components made with metal injection molding

5.2 General Approach and Equipment Requirements for PCRT via Swept Sine Input: 

5.2.1 PCRT systems comprise hardware and software capable of inducing vibrations, recording the component response to the induced vibrations, and executing analysis of the data collected. Inputting a swept sine wave into the part has proven to be an effective means of introducing mechanical vibration and can be achieved with a high quality signal generator coupled with an appropriate active transducer in physical contact with the part. Collection of the part’s frequency response can be achieved by recording the signal generated by an appropriate passive vibration transducer. The software required to analyze the available data may include a variety of suitable statistical analysis and pattern recognition tools. Measurement accuracy and repeatability are extremely important to the application of PCRT.

5.2.2 Hardware Requirements—A swept sine wave signal generator and response measurement system operating over the desired frequency range of the test part are required with accuracy better than 0.002 %. The signal generator should be calibrated to applicable industry standards. Transducers must be operable over same frequency range. Three transducers are typically used; one Drive transducer and two Receive transducers. Transducers typically operate in a dry environment, providing direct contact coupling to the part under examination. However, non-contacting response methods can operate suitably when parts are wet or oil-coated. Other than fixturing and transducer contact, no other contact with the part is allowed as these mechanical forces dampen certain vibrations. For optimal examination, parts should be placed precisely on the transducers (generally, ±0.062 in. (1.6 mm) in each axis provides acceptable results). The examination nest and cabling shall isolate the Drive from Receive signals and ground returns, so as to not produce (mechanical or electrical) cross talk between channels. Excessive external vibration or audible noise, or both, will compromise the measurements.

5.3 Constraints and Limitations: 

5.3.1 PCRT cannot separate parts based on visually detectable anomalies that do not affect the structural integrity of the part. It may be necessary to provide additional visual inspection of parts to identify these indications.

5.3.2 Excessive process variation of parts may limit the sensitivity of PCRT. For example, mass/dimensional variations exceeding 5 % may cause PCRT to be unusable.

5.3.3 Specific anomaly identification is highly unlikely. PCRT is a whole body measurement and differentiating between a crack and a void in the same location is generally not possible. It may be possible to differentiate some anomalies by using multiple patterns and training sets. The use of physics-based modeling and simulation to predict the resonance frequency spectrum of a component may also allow relationships between resonance frequencies and defect locations/characteristics to be established.

5.3.4 PCRT will only work with stiff objects that provide resonances whose frequency divided by their width at half of the maximum amplitude (Q) are greater than 400 to 500. Although steel parts may be very stiff and perfectly reasonable to use for PCRT, steel foil would generally not be.

5.3.5 While PCRT can be applied to painted and coated parts in many cases, the presence of some surface coatings such as vibration-absorbing materials and heavy oil layers may limit or preclude the application of PCRT.

5.3.6 While PCRT can be applied to parts over a wide range of temperatures, it should not be applied to parts that are rapidly changing temperature. The part temperature should be stabilized before collecting resonance data.

5.3.7 Misclassified parts in the teaching set, along with the presence of unknown anomalies in the teaching set, can significantly reduce the accuracy and sensitivity of PCRT.


1.1 This practice describes a general procedure for using the process compensated resonance testing (PCRT) via swept sine input method for metallic or non-metallic parts to compare resonance patterns from a sample under test to reference teaching sets of known acceptable and targeted defect samples. The resonance pattern differences can be used to distinguish acceptable parts with normal process variation from parts with targeted material states and defects that will cause performance deficiencies. These material states and defects include, but are not limited to, cracks, voids, porosity, shrink, inclusions, discontinuities, grain and crystalline structure differences, density-related anomalies, heat treatment variations, material elastic property differences, residual stress, and dimensional variations. This practice is intended for use with instruments capable of exciting, measuring, recording, and analyzing multiple whole body, mechanical vibration resonance frequencies in acoustic or ultrasonic frequency ranges, or both.

1.2 Units—The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard.

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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

1.4 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: 03.04
Developed by Subcommittee: E07.06
Pages: 10
DOI: 10.1520/E2534-20
ICS Code: 17.160