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Surface damage assessment modernised

Published by , Digital Administrator
World Pipelines,

The challenges facing industrial asset owners and NDT service companies are becoming increasingly prominent. First, these issues exist in a market made up of generally old, rapidly ageing infrastructure, which causes an increased demand for inspection. Second, there is a shortage of skilled labour as well as the increased departure of retiring experienced technicians, which provokes a drop in service offerings. This combination of an increase in inspection demands and a decrease in service offerings constitutes a perfect storm for the industry, making it difficult to meet customers’ needs.

To address these challenges, an increasing number of companies are turning to new technologies for better ageing management and the development of new inspection programmes that leverage the tremendous potential in 3D scanning.

One such technology is Creaform’s new VXintegrity software platform, which, when combined with Creaform’s 3D scanners, is a viable solution to the current shortage of experienced technicians and ageing and/or damaged infrastructure. Operators of any skill levels can use 3D scanners to acquire 3D measurements of all types of industrial components. For example, inspectors can accurately measure thickness loss on corroded, industrial, complex geometries, such as pipelines, elbows, nozzles, pressure vessel heads, tank floors and valves. Creaform’s metrology-grade 3D scanners for NDT applications have been proven to measure up to 80 times faster than manual measuring tools. Even better: they can be used by technicians of varying skill levels without any background in metrology or 3D scanning.

Once the data acquisition is complete, the data is then seamlessly uploaded into VXintegrity, a complete NDT platform for surface damage assessment. It includes four different software modules, specifically optimised for industrial asset inspections:

  • Pipeline module (also known as Pipecheck): The safest NDT solutions for pipeline integrity assessment, this module is designed to provide corrosion, denting (mechanical damage), and wrinkle analyses.
  • Surface damage module: Specifically created with power generation and heavy industry owners in mind, this module represents the only accurate and traceable NDT method to assess surface damage on complex geometries, of all shapes, sizes and materials.
  • Monitoring module: Guaranteed to the micron, this monitoring solution is an extremely accurate and noiseless NDT method used to compare damage progression through time, deformation analyses and other simple metrology applications. Its advanced reporting capabilities simplify the monitoring of aging infrastructure and accelerate reporting processes to engineers, management, and regulatory bodies.
  • Aerospace module (also known as SmartDENT 3D): Ideal for the aerospace industry and for MRO companies, this versatile 3D scanning solution offers unmatched speed, ease of use, reliability and repeatability. Hailstorms damage inspection, flap and spoiler maintenance, aircraft incidents analysis and regulatory scheduled maintenance, this module can do it all.

Tapping into a wealth of current and accurate data gives industrial asset owners and NDT companies complete confidence in the information they use to make informed decisions about their assets’ state of health.

NDT services companies and 3D scanning. A game-changing approach for inspections

Innerspec Technologies builds integrated NDT systems and offers, through its FARFIELD NDT division, both asset monitoring and NDT services. Innerspec pioneered commercial applications of Electro Magnetic Acoustic Transducers (EMAT) in the mid-90s, becoming the world leader in this technology with hundreds of systems installed worldwide. More recently, Innerspec acquired Creaform’s Pipecheck and Go!SCAN 3D scanners for a major project; the company was tasked to provide quality control (QC) after welding fabrication of offshore wind jackets. NDT inspections were performed to ensure that all welding processes were executed according to stringent standards. According to the Innerspec team, inspectors’ productivity is five times higher. Inspection costs were also slashed by at least 40%. In addition, Innerspec can provide extra data to serve as a baseline for further inspections to compare degradation and other damage.

Nucleom, a Canadian-based NDT service provider for nuclear facilities, has been using 3D measurement technologies from Creaform for quite some time. Along with VXinspect modules and Pipecheck, the inspection team opted for the HandySCAN 3D scanner.

“Obtaining the level of detail and repeatability that the HandySCAN 3D can enable is more challenging to achieve with conventional manual methods,” explained Adam Pinard, NDE Engineer and 3D Scan Lead at Nucleom. “Our clients are very satisfied with the 3D scan analysis that we provide. We are confident with the quality of the reports we produce due to the accuracy and repeatability of the scanned data,” added Adam. Pinard also mentioned that Nucleom uses the 3D scanning solutions to generate permanent data records for plant infrastructure to carry out advanced analyses without having to return on site.

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