£1 million investment in NDT rental fleet


Rental specialist Ashtead Technology has announced a £1 million investment in new NDT equipment as part of its strategy to create an NDT Centre of Excellence. “This latest series of purchases significantly enhances our fleet of NDT instrumentation and helps to ensure that we are able to meet the full breadth of our customers’ test and inspection equipment needs across almost any industry,” commented James Carlyle, General Manager at Ashtead Technology. He added: “We have made this investment so that our customers don’t have to; most of these instruments come with a hefty capital cost, so the ability to rent them, whilst taking advantage of our technical support, is a major advantage.”

The new instruments are designed for NDT inspection work such as flaw detection, corrosion, delamination and crack assessment, thickness measurement and casting, forging and weld checking. Each instrument has been selected to ensure that users are able to choose equipment that matches both their specification and budget requirements, and Ashtead’s in-house experts are available to ensure that the most appropriate instrument is hired for every job.

Ashtead’s NDT instrument fleet already includes a wide selection of advanced instruments, such as the Olympus OmniScan MX2 and SX, but this has been enhanced by the addition of the Ectane, a high-performance surface array and multi-technology tube inspection system, which is now available for hire in the UK for the first time. Employing ultrasonic, eddy current and electromagnetic technology for the detection and assessment of flaws in conductive materials, the Ectane is said to be significantly more advanced than anything else on the market.

Increasing the range of options for flaw detection, the EPOCH 600 is also included in the new acquisitions, a digital ultrasonic flaw detector offering a high-quality flaw detection platform with exceptional ease of use. The EPOCH 600 is designed to meet the requirements of EN 12668-1 and allows a full range of standard and optional flaw detection features. A rugged, ergonomic design with the flexible PerfectSquare™ pulser and digital filtering capabilities enable operation in almost any inspection environment.

A further acquisition, the NORTEC 600C, has also been designed for durability and simplicity of use. Employing eddy current flaw detection and weighing just 1.6 kg, the NORTEC 600C offers genuine hand-held versatility with a hand-strap that provides direct thumb access to the key controls.

The range of ultrasonic flaw detectors is further enhanced by the addition of the Sonatest Sitescan D20+, which has a scroll-wheel to enable fast navigation through functions via a menu structure that has been designed to guide the user through tasks, with operation quickly becoming second nature. The Sitescan D20+ uses a broadband amplifier and several narrow bands for improved performance, together with a square wave pulser and a time-corrected gain feature. An integrated pipe stand and a standard camera-mount fixing make it possible to free both hands for scanning.

Combining a thickness gauge and a flaw detector in one single lightweight instrument, the USM Go has added an extra level of flexibility and is available for hire with optional thickness and flaw kits. This means that NDT personnel now only need to carry one inspection instrument to perform accurate and dependable thickness measurement and flaw detection.

The WeldCheck eddy current flaw detector from ETher NDE has also been included, largely because of its popularity in applications such as offshore and rope access. The WeldCheck is lightweight, compact and supplied in a tough aluminium alloy powder-coated outer case and is able to use absolute, bridge and reflection probes without the need for adaptors.

In summary, Neil Harrap, NDT Market Manager, said: “It is extremely important to use the correct inspection tool for each application, so the availability of a comprehensive fleet of instruments for hire means that our customers do not have to compromise the quality of their inspection work. If anybody wishes to learn more about the use of these instruments, we will be demonstrating them at the BINDT Annual Conference in Manchester, 9-11 September.”