14 November 1996 Detection of hydrogen in titanium aircraft components using neutron tomography
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Abstract
Hydrogen embrittlement of metal alloys used in aircraft components can cause serious deterioration of the mechanical properties of those components. Especially vulnerable are titanium jet engine fan blades which are exposed to hydrogen at high temperatures and pressures. For this reason non- destructive detection of hydrogen down to concentrations of a few hundred ppm will be a significant addition to maintenance inspection capabilities. The McClellan Nuclear Radiation Center is investigating the use of neutron tomography to obtain quantitative hydrogen concentration information. This paper reports results of the characterization of this system. Image resolutions of a few hundred microns and noise signals of .5 percent have been found. The signal for hydrogen at a few hundred ppm has been found to be above the noise. The measured attenuation coefficients for titanium and hydrogen show beam hardening behavior consistent with the neutron beam energy spectrum. Reconstruction of titanium aircraft engine fan blades show artifacts which may mask hydrogen concentrations as low as 100 ppm; however, procedures for removing those artifacts are presented.
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Matthew R. Gibbons, Wade J. Richards, Kevin C. Shields, "Detection of hydrogen in titanium aircraft components using neutron tomography", Proc. SPIE 2945, Nondestructive Evaluation of Aging Aircraft, Airports, and Aerospace Hardware, (14 November 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.259083; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.259083
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