We are currently actively involved in a number active projects and colaborations.
The Lab is an academic member of the UK Research Centre for NDE (RCNDE), a consortium of six UK Universities and 15 industrial members from around the world. This involves both Core Research, funded via EPSRC, and Targetted Research Programmes such as sub-MHz testing of structures (see below) which is performed with additional cash input from industrial partners. The core research for RCNDE3 is looking at novel techiques for the inspection of difficult materials using a range of new and novel techniques. For previous research projects (such as capacitive imaging, micromachining technologies etc) see the "Other Research" link above.
PULSE COMPRESSION ULTRASONIC INSPECTION
This stared as an EPSRC-funded targeted research programme as part of the RCNDE collaboration, with industrial support from BAE Systems and Tenaris. The ultrasonic inspection of highly scattering/attenuating materials is still a large problem that needs to be addressed. In many cases, there are not many alternatives for inspection, in particular if portability and non-radiological methods are required. The particular materials in question – such as thermal insulation materials for refractory linings, insulation/coatings, and thick sections of composites – are industrially very important. This research is now being extended via a collaboration with The University of Perugia/University of Calabria, Italy.
NDTonAIR EU PROJECT
We are a partner in this Innovative Training Network (ITN), funded by the EU. It is a consortium of 15 partners who are looking at innovative NDE methods for the aerospace sector. More details can be found by at the NDTonAIR website.
We are working with The University of Nottingham (Prof Adam Clare) and the University of Leds (Prof Steven Freear) on new types of metamaterials that are being developed to improve ultrasound imaging resolution. These include both channeled materials containing Fabry-Perot resonating elements, and phononic crystals using scattering effects. Research links with Dr Marco Ricci at the University of Perugia, Italy, and Dr John Page at the University of Manitoba, Canada are helping us to advance methods of design and manufacture of these new materials