This article proposes a pulse-echo ultrasonic propagation imaging system that is capable of autonomous target recognition and scanning an area of a customizable shape for the non-destructive evaluation of structural defects. The proposed system employs through-the-thickness bulk waves for ultrasonic inspection, which is achieved by joining two laser beams: one each for the ultrasonic wave generation and sensing. Moreover, the system is capable of autonomously suggesting a suitable inspection area for a specimen placed in front of the scanning head. The scan area delimitation algorithm uses the specimen image and ascertains the specimen border by means of edge and contour detection operations, following which a scan area closely conforming to the specimen boundary is suggested. The system can scan an area of any arbitrary shape, thereby preventing any wasteful operations that may result from fixed shape (rectangular or square) scanning. A Q-switched laser is used for generating the aforementioned ultrasonic waves, while a laser Doppler vibrometer is used for sensing these signals. A dual-axis automated translation stage is applied for raster scanning of the specimen, and a data acquisition card is employed for taking measurements. A camera mounted on the scan head is used for imaging the specimen for the scan area detection. Graphical user interface software controls all the individual blocks of the system, while implementing the required image processing, scan area detection, signal acquisition, signal processing, and result display. The graphical user interface is created in C++ using the Qt framework. Moreover, Qt Widgets for Technical Applications is used for the result display, and the Open Source Computer Vision Library is employed for the implementation of basic image processing algorithms. Multi-threading is used for real-time updating of the scan results while the scanning is ongoing.