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Airborne Ultrasound


Seal Quality Inspection with Airborne Ultrasound Technology

Airborne ultrasound is a referenced technology in the new USP <1207> Chapter Guidance as a deterministic test method for seal quality testing, is an ASTM Test Method F3004 and FDA Recognized Standard for seal quality inspection testing.

PTI’s proprietary Airborne ultrasound technology is a non-destructive seal quality inspection solution. Airborne ultrasound can be used for many material types such as Tyvek ®, paper, foil, film, aluminum, plastic & poly. PTI’s Seal-Scan (Offline) and Seal-Sensor (Online) both utilize the non-contact airborne ultrasonic testing technology. As a package seal passes through the sensor head, ultrasonic waves propagate through the material causing reflection of the sound waves. When defects are encountered, they result in a reduction/elimination of the signal strength – identifying the defect. The greater the acoustic difference between mediums (most evident at a gas to solid transition) the more sound is reflected, and the less sound transmitted through the seal.

Any material fold, foreign media inclusion and even a microscopic air gap between layers of pouch material can cause a significant reflection, so the transmitted signal is lower. A small cut, abrasion or missing layer in material causes less reflection, so the transmitted signal is higher. Therefore, the level of a signal received after passing through the seal is a function of the seal quality. Various types of seal defects, visible and invisible, leaking and non-leaking, process-related and random, are detectable.


Seal Scan and Seal Sensor

Airborne ultrasound technology has been proven in the field with both online and offline solution options. PTI's ability to adapt this technology into various production constraints and environments make it an excellent solution for flexible packaging systems. It has been established as one of the most effective methods for non-destructive testing of flexible package seals. As per ASTM F3004-13, this is the standard test method for evaluation of seal quality and integrity using airborne ultrasound.


  • Deterministic inspection method producing quantitative results
  • Non-destructive, non-subjective, no sample preparation
  • Works for any material and combinations regardless of color, transparency, print, surface finish or porosity
  • Can be integrated for 100% online defect detection of the final pouch seal
  • Repeatable and reliable results
  • Eliminates subjective manual vision inspection methods
  • Characterizes overall quality and uniformity of the seal
  • Economical cost-effective solution for seal integrity testing the final pouch seal
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