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What Goes Up, Must Come Down—the EPOCH 6LT Flaw Detector’s Wild Ride

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EPOCH 6LT Flaw Detector

When we set out to design the EPOCH® 6LT flaw detector, our mantra was: portable, durable, and powerful—that’s why we gave it the code name ‘Helium,’ to constantly remind ourselves that we wanted this tool to be as light as possible. To celebrate the instrument’s launch, we decided to send it into space (or at least the stratosphere)!

Down a dusty road in Bishop, California, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the flaw detector was prepared for launch. Mounted to a carry plate with a video camera, the flaw detector was attached to a high-altitude weather balloon and sent into the stratosphere. We have a lot of experience drop testing instruments, but we’ve never tried anything like this and had no idea whether the flaw detector would survive the trip.

In a little under two hours, the instrument reached its maximum altitude of 121,340 feet. Floating peacefully at the edge of the void, everything was going smoothly. Finally, the weather balloon popped, and the EPOCH 6LT flaw detector began its descent.

As the air whistled past the plunging flaw detector, a small parachute deployed, slowing the device’s fall to approximately 1,600 feet/minute. Unfortunately, the flaw detector landed deep within Owens River Gorge in an area that was very difficult to access. One cracked oil pan, and three days later, the flaw detector was recovered so that we could bring you this video.

You’re probably wondering whether or not the instrument survived the trip—watch the video to find out!

Download the screen saver for PC

Download the wallpaper for iPhone® mobile devices

Fine print:

Do not attempt to drop your EPOCH 6LT flaw detector from 121,340 feet or operate the instrument at this elevation. It will break.

Loading the player…
/data/VideoLibrary/Videos/EPOCH6LTINSPACE_rev6_08-30(3)_480.mp4

Download the screen saver for PC

Download the wallpaper for iPhone® mobile devices

Fine print:

Do not attempt to drop your EPOCH 6LT flaw detector from 121,340 feet or operate the instrument at this elevation. It will break.

Product Marketing Specialist, Ultrasonic Flaw Detectors
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