As many aviation professionals know, routine aviation inspections are essential for not only ensuring and prolonging the lifespan of an aircraft vessel but mandatory for maintaining an airworthiness aircraft. Conducting aircraft borescope inspections, specifically utilizing an aviation video borescope system, aircraft owners and aeronautic technicians are able to uniquely inspect and thereby diagnose otherwise hard to reach areas of an aircraft. Compressors, combustion chambers, and turbine sections are all easily inspected when you have the power of aircraft borescopes at your disposal.
What is an Aviation Borescope?
Borescopes – commonly referred to as videoscopes and industrial endoscopes – are inspection cameras that are widely used in aviation and aeronautics industries. To ensure that internal components are within optimal performance standards, aviation specialists depend on aircraft borescopes as a visual inspection tool for fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and aircraft engines.
To conduct thorough aviation maintenance inspections, the aircraft borescope tool of choice for most modern-day inspectors is a video borescope also known as a videoscope which provides onboard capabilities such as image capture and video recordings to keep detailed records and document the inspection. These specialized borescopes are often equipped with enhanced lighting to illuminate the inspection area, by either external light sources or built-in LED lighting.
What Aviation Borescopes are Required for Aviation & Aerospace Inspections?
The actual aircraft borescope system required during airplane borescope inspections may vary depending on the inspection needs. For most smaller piston engines, a borescope inspector will often utilize a 6mm borescope inspection camera with about one meter of working cable length in order to obtain a clear visual of the piston head, piston walls as well as lifters. Smaller turbine engines generally require a smaller or micro borescope camera with the inspection camera probe measuring 4mm, 3mm or below in diameter in order to fit through many of the Pratt & Whitney borescope guide tubes.
Larger commercial jet engines normally require a 6mm borescope inspection camera and up to 3 meters of working cable length in order to navigate the entire outside of the aircraft engine. In addition, aviation maintenance inspections for larger commercial crafts require an articulating borescope with maneuverable visual steering and a side-viewing tip (not to be confused with a non-articulating borescope).
What are the features and benefits of Aviation borescopes?
Borescopes are mostly used in nondestructive testing techniques for identifying defects, debris, or imperfections. This means less time spent disassembling and reassembling key pieces of equipment. Borescopes are commonly used in the visual inspection of aircraft engines, helicopter engines, wind turbines, industrial gas turbines, steam turbines, automotive engines, as well as many casting applications. Fast, non-destructive, and incredibly versatile, engine borescopes can provide much-needed insight into the condition of an aircraft.
For both fixed-wing and helicopters, the acronym, ‘AOG’ (Aircraft on Ground) draws a lot of attention since it indicates that the air vessel is not approved for airworthiness and cannot embark on its scheduled travel. In cases like this, a portable borescope is invaluable when trying to diagnose and troubleshoot the cause of a grounded aircraft — particularly if it is due to potential engine issues. Portable borescopes are equipped with a rechargeable battery for on the go inspections and many portable borescopes offer both a microphone for live verbal notations during the inspection process as well as a removable SD card to store image and video recordings. The benefits here are obvious: aviation video borescope systems can be as lightweight and portable as the job demands. Technicians can quickly and easily set up their equipment, perform inspection duties, and get back on the road to the next job fast.
Challenges of Aircraft Inspection
Aircraft inspection professionals face a number of challenges in their daily duties. Experts have to be on the lookout for even the tiniest of issues. Engine cracks, for instance, are commonly caused by thermal cycling. Unintended vibrations, overheating, and mechanical fatigue can all contribute to the issue. With the right engine videoscope, spotting these cracks is easier than ever. Use a flexible borescope to wind through even the tightest of spots.
Debris particle accumulation is another challenge of aircraft inspection. Foreign object damage can lead to serious wear and tear, corrosion, and residue build-up. Borescope accessories like LED lighting can help identify these sorts of challenges, leading to easier resolution.
Aircraft borescopes provide magnified images, recorded footage, and the best possible inside look into the hardest of areas to reach. With a variety of lengths, probe diameters, and features available, borescopes prove instrumental to the modern aircraft inspection process.
Options abound for those interested in aircraft borescopes. With so many options available, though, it’s hard not to feel overwhelmed. If you’re eager to harness the power of engine borescope cameras, consider reaching out to our team of experts.
At USABorescopes your customer satisfaction is our highest priority. With a wide selection of borescopes such as high-quality videoscopes, portable borescopes, aviation guide tubes, and other accessories, you will be sure to find the inspection tool for your specific needs.
Not sure what aviation inspection camera you need? Contact us today and speak to one of our knowledgeable aviation borescope experts. Allow one of our team members to guide you through the process and determine which borescope is right for your needs.