Ultrasonic Contact Impedance Hardness Tester

UCI Hardness Tester is a portable non-destructive hardness tester using ultrasonic contact impedance testing technology for non-destructive hardness inspection of welds, heat affected zones, ion-nitride stamping dies/molds, forms/presses thin-walled parts/bearings etc. It is ideal for weld inspection, HAZ inspections/heat affected zone analysis as well as non-destructive hardness tests of thin-walled parts/bearings etc.

Contrary to other methods such as Rockwell, Brinell and Vickers hardness testing methods, this technique does not cause surface damage on workpieces. Furthermore, its results appear in all prevalent hardness scales.

Non-Destructive Testing

Ultrasonic testing is one of the primary forms of non-destructive testing, using sound waves and ultrasound waves to detect flaws within materials. An inspector sends sound into an asset and listens for echos that indicate flaws in it.

This method can be conducted quickly in the field, making it a suitable option for pipe weld inspections as well as difficult-to-access areas like gear tooth flanks.

Liquid penetrant testing is another non-destructive testing option. This process applies a low viscosity liquid penetrant directly onto an asset and seeps into any cracks or pores in its surface, then after being cleansed and given developer, will rise back up and reveal any flaws in material composition.


UCI portable hardness testers can test materials of different shapes, masses and thickness without harming the product being tested. Compared with dynamic portable hardness testers, these units are much smaller with an easily replaceable battery pack.

UCI differs from Dynamic Impact by measuring changes in vibration frequency caused by a Vickers probe (or diamond tip), rather than simply thrusting against the test surface and impacting rebound. UCI measures these frequency changes caused by Vickers probe’s 136deg diamond, then calculates these differential frequencies into hardness measurements.

UCI testing is a non-destructive procedure that produces smaller imprints than most bench hardness testers (similar to Vickers diamond indentation size). With its quick, easy operation and portability capabilities, this testing method makes for ideal quality assurance tests on products with challenging test positions or geometries such as gear teeth. Results can instantly be displayed in the device and converted to Rockwell C, Brinell or Vickers values for further evaluation.


Traditional hardness testing methods such as Rockwell, Brinell and Vickers may damage samples during testing and require professional technicians for smooth operation. Furthermore, their load capacity limits mean they cannot test very thin metals.

Qualitest’s UCI Portable Hardness Tester uses Ultrasonic Contact Impedance Method for accurate hardness measurements on testing samples with exceptional efficiency, portability and user friendliness. Non-professionals can use it quickly take measurements on small forgings, cast materials, weld inspection, heat affected zones, stamping dies/molds ion-nitrided in situ (DIN), presses, presses thin walled parts bearings and tooth flanks. UCI Portable Hardness Tester features multiple scales, mass storage capabilities and simple calibration. Within seconds it measures the hardness value of samples digitally displayed for immediate evaluation; data files may also be created. A measurement probe – either manually positioned or motorised depending on tester model – pushes down onto materials to perform tests.

Easy to Operate

Portable UCI Hardness Testing is an efficient alternative to other testing methods such as dynamic impact and rebound, offering greater versatility than these approaches. You can use Portable UCI Hardness Testing on parts that have limited surface area or require too large an impact area for dynamic tests; or have shapes that make rebound testing complicated.

UCI hardness testers consist of a hand-held host and probe connected by cable, each equipped with an ultrasonic vibratory probe featuring a vibration bar with a 136-degree diamond tip – also known as Vickers pressure heads – in order to conduct ultrasonic vibratory testing without harming material samples.

As soon as a probe presses against a test material, its vibration frequency changes. A measurement is then taken using the difference in differential frequency compared with stand-by frequency of the probe and then converted back into Rockwell C hardness values using rockwell, leeb or Vickers scales. For convenience and maximum results the NOVOTEST-UD2 comes preconfigured to measure Steel, Alloy Steels, Stainless Steels Cast iron Nonferrous metals along with user definable calibration fields with Rockwell C, Leeb or Vickers hardness scales as well.

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