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Ultrasonic Inspection

Phased Array (PAUT)
Phased array uses 16 to 128 elements (small transducers in one probe) to create ultrasonic beam fronts that encompass up to 40 different angles into the part under examination. This creates distinct advantages over conventional ultrasonics, by giving the technician more coverage over the area interest. This in turn makes inspections must faster and more efficient. Phased array for weld inspection can also be used in lieu of radiography, and has been accepted by most codes in the industry including, ASME B31.1 Power Piping, ASME B31.3 Process Piping, ASME Section VIII Pressure Vessels, and API 650 Above Ground Storage Tanks.

Some advantages of Phased Array are the following:
• Non-intrusive
• Does not affect plant equipment such as sensors and level indicators
• Faster inspection times
• Ability to size multiple planes
• Better accuracy for flaw location
• Better sensitivity to planar flaws which are more detrimental to the part
• Digital record that is easily accessible with the ability to share data over email or a network
• No barricades or removal of personnel during inspection
• Ability to focus at different depths electronically

Amerapex Corporation has implemented qualification testing that is similar to the API QUTE / QUPA and other end user’s in house qualification tests. Each of our certified Ultrasonic Shear Wave and Phased Array technicians has passed a blind test that includes four test specimens. The technician is asked to find, properly size and characterize at least eight real world flaws when testing. This provides assurance of the highest quality technician that Amerapex Corporation puts on your job site.

Time of Flight Diffraction (TOFD)
Time of Flight Diffraction is a sensitive and accurate method for inspecting welds for defects. It is a pitch catch method that uses one probe to pulse an ultrasonic wave, and another on the other side of the weld to receive the ultrasonic wave. The advantages of TOFD are that it is a very fast inspection, along with being very accurate for sizing both the length and height of flaws.

Automated Ultrasonic Corrosion Mapping (AUT)
Corrosion mapping is an ultrasonic technique used for mapping variations in material thicknesses due to corrosion. This technique can be used to find corrosion on vessels, tanks, and piping. It is also a great sure up tool in combination with indications found with Amerapex’s Guided Wave system. Any indication the Guided Wave system finds can be verified by Automated Ultrasonic Corrosion Mapping to have corrosion and give more detailed data about the extent of the corrosion.

Automated Hydrogen Induced Blistering / Cracking Mapping (HIC)
Hydrogen Induced Cracking is cracking that connects Hydrogen Blisters that lay on different planes in a material. Hydrogen Induced Cracking can also be termed step-wise cracking, due to its step down appearance between two blisters at different depths. Hydrogen Induced Blistering / Cracking is detected in the same manner that corrosion is detected. Amerapex uses either Phased Array or a Triplex probe to collect data. Phased Array is useful because it can use numerous angles to detect not only the blister, but also the cracking associated with the blister. The triplex probe has some of the same advantages, as the inspection is done with a three probes in one housing, producing a 0 degree longitudinal wave, and two 45 degree shear waves pulsing in opposite directions.

High Temperature Hydrogen Attack (HTHA)
High Temperature Hydrogen Attack is the loss of strength and ductility of steel by high temperature reaction of absorbed hydrogen with carbides in steel. This reaction causes decarburization and internal fissuring. High Temperature Hydrogen Attack is detected by using a combination of ultrasonic techniques, beginning with the backscatter technique, then Velocity Ratio, and finally Spectrum Analysis.

Ultrasonic Shear Wave
Amerapex Corporation offers Ultrasonic Shear Wave inspections, and has multiple API QUTE qualified technicians on staff.

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