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Radiographic Interpreter Certification

Radiographic Interpreter

Radiographic film and other media is increasingly used in welding. The radiographic interpreter reads the films and then relays what they see to the people who need to know. The American Welding Society (AWS) offers certification as a Certified Radiographic Interpreter.

This certification lets employers know that you understand all of the principles of radiographic interpretation. Does your job require you to be able to read and interpret weld radiographs? Do you need that skill in order to receive a better position? Then this would be the certification that you would want to work towards. In this program, you will learn about the correct selection of image quality indicators, proper film exposure, the use of acceptance criteria as defined by ASME, AWI and API codes, and characterization of indications.

The program is a five-day seminar called the AWS Certified Radiographic Interpreter (CRI) Seminar. It is designed to make sure that every participant is able to assess the indications on radiographic media properly, whether it is a radiograph of the base metal or the weld itself. The seminar will prepare you for the CRI Certification exam which will be given at the end of every seminar week.

A radiographic interpreter does more than simply make a judgement call. The interpreter has to decide if the radiograph was exposed properly, if the image quality indicators are correct according to code and what acceptance will apply under the code. If any of these tasks are ignored, the product, company, and interpreter's job are all at risk.

The time and money that is spent on this seminar can repay you and your employer many times. Field experts teach the courses, the exam is tough, and certification allows everyone to know that you know what you're doing. The seminar begins on Monday, runs through Friday, with the exam held on Saturday. The exam consists of two multiple choice tests. The first general part has 70 questions and the specific part has 78. It lasts for 3 hours. The next part of the exam is the practical test which has 40 questions and lasts for 3 hours.

When you participate in the seminar, you receive a 3-year membership to AWS if you are not already an individual member. You will receive a subscription to Trends magazine and over $200 worth of books. The CRI certification can be added as an endorsement for CWI or SCWI. It can also be used to exempt you from the next 9-year CWI or SCWI recertification exam.

Ed C.


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