A16-010 Laser-scanned FPI with Custom-Engineered Quantum Dot Penetrant for Bore Inspection

Period of Performance: 08/08/2016 - 02/04/2017


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Laser Techniques Company, LLC
11431 Willows Rd NE Array
Redmond, WA 98052
Firm POC
Principal Investigator


Fluorescent penetrant inspection (FPI) is a commonly-used non-destructive evaluation (NDE) method for the detection of microscopic cracks. However, conventional FPI has serious limitations including the potential of hydrogen embrittlement, which can result in post-inspection damage to the parts being inspected. Additionally, small bores and tubes are very difficult to inspect using visual FPI methods, which rely on operator judgement and visual acuity. This program will result in the development of an automated laser-based scanning system that utilizes colloidal Quantum Dot (QD) technology. QDs are unique, nanoscale materials that can be engineered with a variety of absorption and emission wavelengths, making the filtering of the excitation light much easier to accomplish, as well as and ligands that enable QDs to bind to a variety of solvents. The extension to laser-scanned FPI with QD technology will result in a NDE process that has the potential to revolutionize the inspection of parts by providing rapid inspection by significantly reducing the issues of process complexity and operator dependency, while eliminating materials that can damage the test components. This program will directly impact the US Armys ability to inspect high-value, safety-critical assets, and has significant potential value for extension to commercial assets.