The challenge was to develop a reliable quality control system that would test used, in-service scaffold planks for the construction industry. These planks are often utilized on high rise building scaffolding, thus the trust in safety of these structures is of utmost importance.

The type of products tested include horizontally laminated scaffold planks, vertically laminated scaffold planks, solid timber scaffold planks and LVL formwork bearers.

These products have a very rough, in-field service life cycle, resulting in a variety of damage-causing issues, most importantly traditionally undetectable structural damage, but also surface conditions – contaminations by concrete patches, films of paint etc. 

Also very common, after years of service, these planks contain rot and delaminations.

Traditionally, these scaffolds are repetitively tested by primitive mechanical stress load tests, often exceeding double the maximum service load capacity. Understandably, these tests add to the unseen internal structural damage of these planks. 

Airstar’s intent and hope is that eventually, their revolutionary quality control method will completely replace the damaging mechanical load tests, ensuring safety to workers throughout the construction industry.

Technically, the ultrasonic scaffold scanner is a version of Airstar’s well proven, industry superior, high-performance Super Blow Detector, capable of penetrating all surface conditions and internal makeup of these varied scaffold planks. The scanner is fully adjustable to handle a variety of plank widths, thicknesses and material compositions. 

Importantly, the scanner provides continuously repeatable results, is very low maintenance, and can be operated by a single worker through its ease of use, defect marking and defect alarm light.

This new revolutionary method’s effectiveness has been verified through factory comparative tests, through matching results of non-destructive ultrasonic tests vs. the destructive load tests.