We have recently installed a TEMATE SI-BW(FL) automated Coil-Weld Seam Inspection System in a final inspection finishing line at a major steel mill in Germany. The finishing line processes a wide variety of steel coils including Hot-Dip Galvanized and electrogalvanized steel primarily for automotive applications as well as several grades of uncoated steel. The requirement for a fully-volumetric weld-inspection system comes in the face of increasingly stringent quality requirements due to increased handling loads and speeds required of customers of steel coils, which include service centres for automotive and construction applications. The TEMATE EMAT weld inspection system performs a full volumetric ultrasound analysis of the weld quality and is able to identify and locate all common types of weld defects, including internal unseen defects.
In this retrofit installation, the TEMATE esystem was integrated directly onto the welding carriage of a 30 year old Laser cutter and welder which was modified to do 4 passes over the coil width:
The final pass was already an empty pass, so the inspection has been added with negligible impact on the overall cycle-time.
The technical challenge of the installation was to allow the system to fully automate the EMAT inspection parameter set-up irrespective of coil thickness, width, grade and coating. Innerspec also developed and implemented a bespoke mechanical setup that would position the EMAT sensor directly onto the steel surface of the coil between the existing welding clamps.
Our customer is very pleased at the performance of the TEMATE system and its ability to reduce customer complaints by identifying and rewelding defective welds before they are passed onto their customers.