Inspection: Train Hollow Axles

Originally designed for the rail industry in the inspection of train axle bores, this scanner can be adapted for most bore inspection requirements and is available in manual or automated configurations. The system is compact, portable, and easy to set up so enables the inspection of train axles in-situ by a single operator. The scanner can inspect axle bores from Ø25mm to Ø110mm by changing the probe head to the appropriate diameter. Both the automated and manual versions can inspect bores of any length by attaching lances to give the required stroke length. The automated version has two motorised axes to permit axial and circumferential motion through the bore either by Helical, Helicoidal, or Raster scan patterns.

The Axle Bore scanner incorporates interchangeable probe lance heads containing two single crystal ultrasonic shear wave transducers orientated forwards and backward in the axial direction and a zero-degree compression probe contoured to suit the bore diameter (probe head diameters determine the number of probes that can be incorporated). The transducers are spring-loaded onto the bore surface and with gimballing that allows the probes to take up any variation on the inner surface. Integrated tubing also ensures adequate couplant is supplied to the interface between the transducers and the inspection surface. The probe lance features a series of axial supports to assist with stability and durability. Both the probe heads and lances are interchangeable and can be disconnected from the scanner for the inspection of varying bore diameters or for manual operation of the system.

The automated version has two motorised axes to permit axial and circumferential motion through the bore: either by Helical, Helicoidal or Raster scan patterns. The scanner provides 370° circumferential movement (for overlap) and can perform a raster scan of 370° x 2150mm in increments from 1mm and positional accuracy of ±1° circ., ±1mm axial.

The Axle Bore Scanner is powered by the Phoenix ISL ‘Drive’ motor controller and can be used with all industry-standard acquisitions units.

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Inspection: Train Hollow Axles

Standard Kit

  • Scanner unit
  • Drive Motor controller
  • Interchangeable Probe head lances – Specify diameters when ordering (typically each contains 2 x shear wave probes and 1 x 0° compression probe, diameter dependent)
  • 5m umbilical bundle: cable from scanner to instrumentation incl motor / encoder cables, probe cables, couplant irrigation tubing
  • Protective carry case



  • Two motorised scanning axes
  • 2150mm axial motion (can be customised)
  • 370° circumferential motion (±185°)
  • Axial limit switches to prevent over-travel
  • Couplant seals around probe head deliver a cleaner inspection
  • Emergency stop to halt scanning motion
  • Series of axial supports within probe lance
  • Probe head incorporates sprung loaded transducers with gimballing
  • Probe lance and transducers incorporate couplant tubing and channels
  • Powered by Phoenix ISL Drive motor controller (can be wired for use with other industry-standard motor control units)
  • Compatible with industry standard instrumentation
  • Axial Accuracy ±1mm
  • Circumferential Accuracy ±1°


  • Reduces inspection time and costs by scanning rail axles in-situ
  • Rapid inspection speeds in both directions
  • Adapts to inspect bore diameters from Ø25mm to Ø110mm
  • Customisable with interchangeable probe heads and lances to inspect varying axle lengths and diameter sizes
  • Performs a raster scan of 370° x 2150mm
  • Automated or manual operation when probe lance is disconnected
  • Compatible with any instrument that has X-Y encoder inputs

Downloads and Documentation