Industrial CT scanning lets engineers nondestructively visualize, measure, and analyze the internal features of precision parts and assemblies. At MD&M West 2014, experts from the 3D ProsScan Div. of NyproMold discussed the advantages of 3D CT scanning in product development and validation.

Similar to a CAT scan, industrial CT scanning creates digital 3D digital models of products by combining over a thousand 2D computer-processed X-ray images. According to company officials, industrial CT scanning is the only form of 3D scanning which can measure complex internal and external features with the scanned item intact and unchanged.

3D CT scanning software provides comparative analysis to a CAD model or another scanned part, letting engineers check the dimensional accuracy of components. It can be used to perform material and defect analysis, showing void and inclusion sizes and locations. It also shows seals, fits, interface engagements, and interferences, even in complex assemblies.

Because the analysis is nondestructive, 3D CT scanning can visualize and analyze assemblies internally and externally without modifying, sectioning, or disassembling the part. Using X-ray images and geometric analysis software, CT scanning can generate virtual cross-sections through walls, as well as measure distances, wall volumes, and other features.

Finally, traditional inspection methods require fixtures which must be engineered, built, and validated. CT scanning does not require any fixtures, which helps speed the inspection process. Scanned parts are typically secured in a Styrofoam base.