One of the most useful methods of nondestructive testing for the railway industry is ultrasonic testing. Ultrasonic testing of welds can do wonders to determine the security of rails and verify that they are sufficient for train travel.
Trains are often subject to the damage caused by daily wear and tear. Ultrasonic testing makes up for the shortcomings of magnetic flux leakage (a more rudimentary inspection method) by sending high-frequency sound waves through the component under inspection. When the reading registers on the ultrasonic testing equipment, the nondestructive testing technician can determine whether or not there is a flaw in the magnetism of the rail or another inconsistency in the materials.
It is crucial for nondestructive testing technicians to perform thorough inspections on trains and rails, both routinely and for special maintenance. Without this critical verification of safety, train occupants and crew can be put at serious risk for injury.