Ultrasonic Thickness Gauge Explained

Last updated on June 8th, 2019 at 08:03 am

Ultrasonic thickness gauge

An ultrasonic thickness gauge is a non-destructive testing device utilised for measuring the thickness of solid materials such as steel and other metals.


  • Non-destructive measuring device
  • Able to read through protective coatings such as paint
  • Utilised for determining corrosion and wastage
  • Readings are taken from one side only
  • Highly accurate and error-checked readings
  • Light-weight and portable for easy handling
  • Simple operation
  • Reduces inspection times and costs
  • Reliable and robust construction with stringent IP ratings

How does and an ultrasonic thickness gauge work

The digital multiple echo technology in an ultrasonic thickness gauge.  It sends a short pulse of high-frequency sound through the material.  However, unlike single echo technology, the multiple echo unit measures the time delay between 3 consecutive back wall echoes, and it is the distance between the 2nd and 3rd echoes that gives a true and accurate reading of the material thickness only, ignoring any paint or coating.

Read more SearchGo tech articles

Ultrasonic thickness devices save time and money

Measuring pipeline thickness with ultrasonic gauge

When performing industrial surveys and maintenance checks the ultrasonic thickness gauge has become a necessity.  Cutting down the time taken to complete the task and negating the need for expensive removal and reinstatement of coatings, the device enables engineers to easily and efficiently obtain accurate readings highlighting any current flaws or upcoming problems that could occur in a structure.

Types of ultrasonic gauges

Portable and hand-held devices are currently available on the market, these allow industrial engineers to perform vital predictive maintenance in situations that require rope access, in hazardous environments, offshore, and for ship survey projects as well as for divers on deep-sea exploration assignments.

Industries Currently Utilising the Ultrasonic Thickness Gauge

  • Civil Engineers & County, Borough and District Councils :
    Used in the assessment of metal thickness of bridges and other large structures
  • Chemicals:
    Used for inspection and maintenance of hazardous material vessels and storage tanks
  • Food & Other Processing Plants:
    Used to provide maintenance testing for Food production plants, pipe and storage tanks
  • Oil & Gas:
    Used to perform maintenance testing for internal corrosion of oil and gas pipelines and storage tanks
  • Shipping & Marine:
    Used to obtain regular preventative maintenance readings for shipping companies and marine leisure craft from hull and bulkhead
  • Underwater:
    Used in hazardous environments to perform regular maintenance reading on underwater pipelines and oil rigs. The device is often referred to as an underwater ultrasonic thickness gauge
  • Water Treatment Facilities:
    Used to perform regular maintenance checks on water treatment plants, pipes and storage.

Cygnus Instruments Limited has three decades of experience in the field of ultrasonic measurement and is the leading manufacturer of multiple echo digital ultrasonic thickness gauges.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here