CHOTs – from lab to the real world
The University of Nottingham has developed a novel ultrasonic transducer for non-destructive testing that allow for the first time remote and couplant free operation. This system is referred to as Cheap Optical Transducers, CHOTs. The transducers can be placed on the surface of a component and generate and detect ultrasound signals when activated by a laser; therefore offers truly remote operation without need for attached cables or power supplies of any kind.
A patent has been filed (publication number WO 2007/135439) in order to protect and fully exploit the new technology. Due to the nature of the market the commercialisation strategy is to license the CHOTs technology to Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) equipment manufacturers. The CHOTs technology has been presented and discussed with various key players within the international NDT market space and valuable feedback has been gained. All companies have stressed that one of the major key factors for supporting this technology is to bring proof of their use on samples similar in size, shape and materials to the ones used for testing by their clients. Therefore, the aim of this project is to demonstrate the use of CHOTs on samples similar in size, shape and materials to the ones used in potential licensees' markets (for example an aeroengine component).