Portable Ultrasonic Testing Gets Clever

25 May 2011

Centre for Advanced Transport Engineering and Research(CATER) challenges the current industry standard of short length rail inspection with a creative concept and very effective portable ultrasonic testing system which offers clear benefits for all rail networks.

The single wheel probe HANDWave portable system has two versions, both with the unique capability to offer flexibility and cost benefits without compromising RFD performance.

The HANDWave Single Rail Tester (SRT) is an excellent option for reaching difficult to access areas of track. The HANDWave Dual Rail Tester (DRT) is typically pushed for simultaneous testing of both rails. The DRT is also towable for extended testing over longer distances.

A world first and a clear advantage over current industry testing methods is for a customer to purchase two Single Rail Testers and a Dual Rail Adaptor. These Testing units can be configured as two separate Single Rail Testers or uniquely as one Dual Rail Tester. The Dual Rail Tester can be either pushed or towed. This removes the need for three different units as offered by other RFD suppliers.

  • The clear advantages include a significantly lower initial purchase price as several different units for a range testing situations are now not required
  • Common parts and operations are an advantage across the C.AT.E.R portable HANDWave range for ease of maintenance and familiarity with screens and controls
  • Maintenance is straightforward and there is much less cost and time involved than with a larger vehicle or series of different vehicles

The HANDWave single rail (SRT) and the dual rail (DRT) are the rail inspection industry's only units that incorporate the CATER ULTRAWave MKIII RFD system. This advanced system has comprehensive functionality with power to process information digitally whilst recording Rail Height, central foot corrosion and subsurface head flaw identification as it does in the multi-Wheel Probe systems.

Five channels are processed concurrently. In addition, the clever virtual channels raise the capacity to over 15 channels. Near commercialisation is a larger Module and the capacity will then increase to over 30 channels, clearly making it the most powerful portable RFD system and unlikely to be matched in the near future.

This popular unit is now accepted in many rail markets for its robust and effective performance. However, the unique advantage is in its ability to significantly reduce capital expense from a single purchase rather than from several different units and by reducing the time needed for maintenance and operations. Agents are available now in most locations for Service Contracting and product purchase.

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