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Publication Date: 2016-May-05
Document File: 3 page(s) / 37K

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The Prior Art Database


A technique for providing information on structural changes of components using a borescope is disclosed. The technique includes a multi-modal approach based on a three dimensional (3D) phase shifting technology. The 3D phase shifting technology provides both fast 3D imaging and structurally sensitive holographic or shearographic imaging to provide both dimensional characterization as well as structure integrity changes due to damage or wear. The technique is an optical method and therefore, may be applied to provide information on structural changes of any material, metals, composites or ceramics. The technique allows incorporating combined capability of 3D imaging and holographic or shearographic imaging into a borescope type of delivery mechanism.

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The present invention relates generally to a borescope and more particularly to a technique for providing structural integrity changes of a surface or component due to damage or wear.

Generally, visual inspections are performed to assess degradation of components on aircraft structures and engines. The degradation is usually due to damage or wear of the components. The visual inspection is carried out using borescope technology. However, inspection with visual borescope provides only few characterization of an actual size or structural impact of problems, such as, cracks, pitting or erosion. Further, visual inspection using a two dimensional (2D) imaging borescope may require removal of a product that in fact may be perfectly fine for continued service.

Advancements in conventional techniques have provided some ability to make limited three dimensional (3D) measurements of some features through a borescope. However, the conventional techniques are unable to make 3D measurements of structural impact. For example, in a conventional technique, holography and shearography technologies are used, that presents potential change in structural integrity of the components and, therefore used for inspecting external skins of aircraft for fatigue.

Another conventional technique includes a borescope steering adjustment system and method. The borescope system includes a processor that is programmed to display a user interface to enable a user to control movement of the probe, adjust settings, navigate menus, make selections, or any combination thereof.

One other conventional technique includes a fringe projection system and a method for projecting a plurality of fringe sets suitable for phase-shift analysis on a surface using a probe. The probe includes a light source, a coherent fiber bundle, and a pattern selector. The pattern selector includes at least one patterned zone through which light from the light source passes to project at least one fringe set onto a surface. Each of the at least one fringe sets has a structured-light pattern. The probe further includes an imager for obtaining at least one image of the surface and a processing unit that is configured to perform phase-shift analysis on the at least one image.

The above mentioned conventional techniques either provide control movement of borescope to adjust articulation sensitivity of the probe, or provide 3D surface mapping and dimensional measurement. However, the conventional techniques are not sufficient to provide information on structural changes of the components that may impact future performance of the components.

Therefore, it would be desirable to have an improved technique to provide information on structural changes of components using the borescope.


A technique for providing information on structural changes of components using a borescope is disclosed. The technique includes a multi-modal approach based on a t...