Evaluation of defects in the seal region of food packages using the ultrasonic contrast descriptor, ΔBAI

Ayhan Ozguler, Scott A. Morris, William D. O'Brien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A rapid, dependable method of on-line package inspection will allow wider implementation of energy- and material-efficient retortable pouches and trays, by reducing inspection costs. To evaluate high-frequency ultrasonic imaging as a sensing method, the 17.3 MHz ultrasonic pulse-echo Backscattered Amplitude Integral (BAI) method was used to visualize and evaluate major defects (channels and product inclusions, which compromise the seal integrity and must be reliably inspected) in the seal area of flexible food packages. The focus of this study was to evaluate the image contrast, denoted ΔBAI, for various packaging materials, defect types and sizes. Channel (6-100 μm in diameter) and inclusion defects (strands of mouse tail tendons, 20-150 μm) were created in the seal area of all-plastic and foil-containing packaging films. It has been shown that there is a direct relationship between the defect size and ΔBAI value, and that different defect types and packaging materials have a significant impact on the ΔBAI value. The utility of ΔBAI for detecting defects makes it a useful and reliable sensing method for package inspection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-171
Number of pages11
JournalPackaging Technology and Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanical Engineering


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