TSC wins contract to develop a custom ACFM inspection system for rail freight axle testing


TSC Inspection Systems has successfully secured a contract with a major rail freight operator in Australia to deliver an ACFM® inspection system, custom-designed to inspect a range of freight wagon axles.

As a result of a programme of independent trials, ACFM was selected as the technology of choice for this application. The main reasons for the selection were ACFM’s sensitivity to surface-breaking defects, the ease of deployment and the ability to reject various factors, which can create spurious signals and data in other technologies, such as lift-off, making the technology easy to use and interpret.

The system is designed to be used by non-NDT trained rail technicians and features automated defect detection with simple ‘Pass/Fail’ reporting. Further in-depth analysis of failed axles can be carried out by a supervisor, who is trained in ACFM data interpretation and identifying the location and size of the defects found. Another benefit that ACFM technology brings to the project is that all inspection data is automatically stored for audit and review purposes.

Dr Mike Smith, TSC’s Director of Technology and Innovation, commented: “This is an exciting development for TSC as it utilises a custom-designed crawler to deploy one of the largest ACFM array probes that we have ever built. This system provides our partner with a powerful and reliable inspection solution, supporting their consistent efforts to improve rail vehicle reliability and reduce the costs of operation.”