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NDT Global further develops its ILI tools

In response to industry feedback, NDT Global has further developed the abilities of its inline inspection (ILI) tools to detect specific cracks in pipelines.

Following the feedback, NDT Global has improved the ability of its ILI to detect circumferential cracks and crack-like anomalies in pipelines.

Circumferential cracking is a unique problem that severely threatens pipeline integrity management programs, as it traditionally has gone undetected.

The increased discovery of such anomalies during dig programs has spurred further development of ILI tools for the liquid and gas pipelines targeting this type of threat.

These problems can potentially arise due to imperfections in the circumferential welds; local stress/strain accumulation, caused by soil movement can also contribute to circumferential cracking.

NDT Global utilises its team’s experience and knowledge to identify of cracks and crack-like indications that orient circumferentially using highly detailed and in-depth data, deploying ILI tools that use ultrasonic shear wave technology to address circumferential cracking found in pipelines.

Its data analysts use the captured data and translate this information into flaw properties, such as length, width, type and depth.

Figure 1: photography of several positively validated circumferential crack fields

Figure 1 shows several positively validated circumferential cracks in a section of a pipeline; a third-party dig verified the presence of the features reported by NDT Global, which are clearly visible in the image.

NDT Global use a range of ILI tools to capture data relating to defects, and by correlating information from previous runs enables the data analysis team is able to take into consideration all types of cracking and provide enhanced feedback.

The existing integrity assessment methodologies used for axial cracking can be used for circumferential cracks or flaws; resultantly, the best possible data is delivered and used to generate meaningful insight for subsequent assessments of all crack and/or crack-like features.

For these identifications to work in unison with ongoing integrity management programs, the operator makes an informed selection and are in a better position to prioritise the findings and decide on the actions they need to take to maintain the integrity of their pipelines.

The basis of this prioritisation is typically risk-based assessment that includes information from the findings, severity of identified features, consequence considerations, and the utilisation of available geotechnical data.

Information included in this geotechnical data originates from a field slope survey, because of the influence soil movement has on circumferential cracking.

Through the close collaborative relationships with pipeline operators, NDT Global has worked extensively to incorporate feedback from field digs into the operation, reporting and analysis of circumferential crack defects, with the overall objective of eliminating pipeline failures due to integrity defects.

For more information visit the NDT Global website.

If you have company news you would like featured in Pipelines International contact Managing Editor Nick Lovering at nlovering@gs-press.com.au

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