Pre-penetrant etch chemical processing method

Pre-penetrant etch (pre-pen etch) is a surface preparation process which primarily removes smeared material to prepare a part for subsequent Fluorescent Penetrant Inspection (FPI) processing. Examples of processes that potentially smear material include grinding, sanding, abrasive blasting, buffing, reaming, milling, drilling, and so on.

The type of cleaning process and solutions used depend on the material of the metal part to be processed. But, in general, the pre-pen etch process cleans away a small amount of material which is closely controlled to remove 0.00005 in [0.00125 mm] per surface.

Pre-penetrant etch is an additional service offered on request as part of FPI processing.


Pre-penetrant etch laboratory inspection services

Element offers a complete range of pre-pen etch services with approvals and industry certifications to cover the following specifications:

  • HS7725
  • RPS 15.45
  • C5098
  • MTV 607-3
  • SS8712 (swab etch)
  • EIM Code 8
  • RPS 674 (including swab etch)
  • CP3605

Pre-penetrant etch processes can be applied to a range of parts, including housings, brackets, rod ends, closures, actuators, pistons, flanges, valve bodies, retainers, yokes, balls, bearing plates,  core weldments, and more.

For more information about our pre-penetrant etch services, or to request a quote, contact us today. 

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