Ultrasonic Contact Impedance Hardness Testing

Mobile UCI hardness testers from FOERSTER – whether with manual measurement probes or motorized measuring probes – are perfect for use in difficult test positions and challenging component geometries. They are capable of assessing and digitally saving the measured values.

Unlike the classic dynamic impact method, the UCI portable hardness testing procedure does not involve damaging the material. Instead, it monitors the change in vibration frequency at contact with the test surface under a specified test load.

Ultrasonic contact impedance (UCI) method

UCI is a non-destructive method for measuring the hardness of metal products. It can be used to test products with a minimal testing area and has better repeatability than traditional Vickers methods. It is ideal for incoming quality inspection, mix-up checks, and production controls. It also has the added benefit of being less influenced by operator skill and measurement technique.

The UCI method operates by imposing a force on the diamond to change its vibration frequency. The change in the resonance frequency is recorded and analyzed. This information is compared to the data from MPA-calibrated steel reference blocks. This allows for the determination of the hardness value HV.

UCI testers are portable and easy to use. They support the measurement of a wide range of hardness values, including HB, HRC, and HV. They can be used in the workshop or field and are suited for use with weld inspection, cast material, heat-affected zones, ion-nitride stamping dies and molds, forms, presses, thin-walled structures and parts, bearings, tooth flanks, and other difficult-to-measure components. visit for the Ultrasonic Contact Impedance Hardness Testing tool.

UCI probe

The UCI method works with the same principle as a dynamic impact test but without damaging the workpiece. The measurement device measures the vibration frequency of a probe with a 136-degree diamond at its end, also known as a Vickers probe, and calculates the hardness value.

The measured value is immediately available in the UCI system and can be analyzed on location. It can be converted to the main hardness scales – HB, HRC, and HV – with a variety of conversion functions. The influence of the E-modulus, which is uniform for a material class, can be compensated directly in the test device via a standardized adjustment curve.

UCI enables fast and easy hardness testing of small items, objects with thin walls, or complex surfaces. It is ideal for use in workshop and field conditions. The UCI system is suitable for measuring cast materials, weld inspections, heat-affected zones, Ion-nitride stamping dies and molds, presses, bearings, and tooth flanks.

UCI meter

UCI meter is a portable hardness tester that is popular for testing thin metals. It consists of a vibrating rod with a 136-degree diamond at the end which is depressed into the test surface under a fixed load to generate an Ultrasonic vibration frequency shift. The frequency shift is then converted to a hardness value. It is ideal for testing small components and is non-destructive, resulting in fewer scrap parts and lower mfg costs.

The instrument can be adjusted to materials with a differing Young’s modulus using a comparative measurement with the MPA-calibrated steel hardness reference blocks. This only has to be done once and the adjustment parameters can be stored in plain text.

The device also features a Leeb probe that can be used for testing small items with a minimal wall thickness and complex shape, as well as for testing the hardness of surface-hardened layers. The device has a frost-resistant display and is designed to withstand harsh working conditions.

UCI hardness tester

The UCI method is a portable and non-destructive measurement technique. It relies on the principle that the vibrating rod (Vickers diamond) changes its frequency after contact with the material, which can be measured by a sensor in the host device. This change in frequency is used to calculate the hardness value of the material.

The mobile UCI hardness tester NOVOTEST T-UD3 is the ideal solution for measuring the hardness of metals in difficult-to-reach areas. Its non-destructive testing leaves significantly smaller imprints than bench testers. This makes it easier to use for quality control, and the resulting savings in scrap parts and production costs are considerable.

The UD3 is compatible with cable-connected FOERSTER UCI probes in versions with different test loads (handheld and motor). The calibration of the device for the specific material to be tested can be carried out by comparison measurements using classic Vickers testing machines and stored on the material tables.

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