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3 benefits of great 3D surface profiling

Posted by Tom Swan on Mar 28th 2020

3 benefits of great 3D surface profiling

This gauge allows for useful 3-D surface profile readings.


There are several ways to obtain a surface profile, including Testex Tape, a visual comparator or spring micrometer. If you want the most complete image and reading possible, though, you'll need the latest tools for 3-D rendering. M-Test offers the DeFelsko Positector 6000 RTRP Probe for a complete series of readings, including an accurate surface profile.

Surface profile is probably the most critical part of a coating system. It has been proposed for many years that it is not only the height of the profile was important but that the number of peaks per inch or cm is also critical. This is referred to as peak density. The reason peak density has never been specified is the lack of field equipment that could measure it. The standard way to measure peak density in the past was a surf test. This is an instrument with a diamond stylus that is pulled over the surface and counts the peaks and valleys. The limitation is it only measures in a straight line and only for 1 cm distance. It is best used on a flat horizontal surface and is more suited for the lab than the fields. Different types for Surf testers.

With the advent of the Positector 6000 3D surface profile probe, peak density can now be easily measured in the field.

#1: Get a better bond
The entire goal of surface profiling is to determine whether or not a coating will bond sufficiently. If you can't get an accurate impression of the peaks and valleys on a surface, it may b useful to determine how well a coating will bond to a surface. Since peak density has been hard to determine in the past, there is not a lot of real would data on how the pek density effect the adhesive bonding of the coating to the substrate. By using the Positector 6000 RTRP probe, we can gain a better understanding of the relationship between peak density and how it effects the bonding of the coating to the substrate.

Once the industry compiles the necessary data, the accuracy of an imaging device could save you more money in the long run if you have a clear understanding of the peak from the beginning. After the surface has been blast-cleaned, you have a clear opportunity to prepare for future coatings if you have a reliable image of the steel to start with.

"You have an opportunity to prepare for future coatings if you have a reliable image of the steel."

With the abilities of a 3-D imaging tool such as Gwyddion, which is open source software, you can verify that a surface has the profile right depth as well as the proper peak density to maximize the bonding of the coating to the surface.

#2:Integration with other devices
As our site states, you can use thePositector 6000to transmit data to a mobile device for easy access with most of the probes. Doing this can help keep inspectors on the move and allow them to save time. Having information from the device so close at hand can also give you a better look at important information. By using the memory feature of the Smartlink or the Positector Advanced body, you can collect data from several different probes and send the batched dta to your computer using Posisoft Software (current version is Version 4).

It should be noted that due to the file size, the RTRP probe only works with the Advanced body and you can only store one image at a time which must be downloaded before you can take another image. The software of choice, which is free, is Gwyddion

#3: Simplification
The RTRP probe is the only probe that requires the Positector advanced body which is $680.00 for the body and probe is $1895.00. On the other hand, All the Positector 6000 probes will work with the Advanced and Standard ($280.00) bodies. The Positector combines surface profile gauge functions with several other gauge types. Ultrasonic thickness, dry film thickness, dew point meter, coating thickness on concrete and other nonmetallic substrates, and the New Shore A & D Durometers, This can also save you the hassle of having to download from other meters since you can store all the readings from the different probes in one body and all you have to do to get the data is download one meter.

M-Test has a full inventory of the best tools for measuring surface profiling and other coating testing testing: Contact us today orvisit our store to learn more.


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Get accurate 3D readings from an up-to-date surface profile gauge.