The Effectiveness of Non-Destructive Testing Technologies (Baseline Spot Assessments)

In this article, we will first summarize a technical paper presented at the 2016 No-Dig Show by the North American Society for Trenchless Technology (NASTT) that highlights PICA’s innovative Intermediate NDT service. Following this, we will delve into the reasons why asset managers, pipeline operators, and owners should consider PICA’s services for maintaining and extending the life of critical pipeline infrastructure.

Summary of NASTT’s 2016 No-Dig Show Technical Paper:

Pipeline Inspection & Condition Analysis Corporation (PICA) demonstrated its prowess in advanced pipeline inspection at the 2016 No-Dig Show. The technical paper, authored by D. Russell, Y. Yu, and C. Garrett, focuses on PICA’s Intermediate NDT service, particularly using the Bracelet Probe for detecting internal pitting in pipelines suspended under bridges.

This case study involved inspecting two steel pipelines in Minneapolis. The first, a 48-inch pipeline installed under the Franklin Avenue Bridge in 1952, and the second, a 54-inch pipeline under the 10th Avenue Bridge from 1948. Both pipelines faced challenges due to their locations and the necessity for external inspection methods.

PICA employed its unique “Through-Transmission” electromagnetic inspection technique, housed in a flexible, wheeled bracelet probe. This technology allows for the detection of internal pitting and degradation without direct internal access to the pipelines. The Bracelet Probe, by generating a low-frequency electromagnetic field that interacts with the pipe, identifies variations in wall thickness indicative of potential internal damages.

Despite environmental and logistical challenges, like cold winds and difficult access, the inspection provided valuable insights into the pipeline conditions. The data gathered was instrumental in helping the Minneapolis Water Treatment and Distribution Services make informed decisions regarding maintenance and potential pipeline replacement.

Why Asset Managers Should Choose PICA’s Services:

PICA’s sophisticated inspection services, as exemplified in the NASTT 2016 case study, highlight several key reasons why asset managers, pipeline operators, and owners should employ their services.

  1. Innovative Technology: PICA employs a range of state-of-the-art technologies like Electromagnetic Remote Field Eddy Current Testing, Handheld Electromagnetic and Ultrasonic Technology, and Multi-Sensor Acoustic Sphere Technology in it’s service offerings. These service solutions provide comprehensive insights into pipeline conditions, surpassing conventional inspection methods.
  2. Comprehensive Material Compatibility: PICA’s tools are adept at inspecting a wide range of pipeline materials – from cast iron and carbon steel to various lined pipes. This versatility ensures effective inspection across diverse pipeline systems.
  3. Proactive Approach to Pipeline Management: The core philosophy of PICA revolves around proactive inspection and condition analysis. This approach is crucial in pre-empting failures, reducing downtime, and avoiding costly reactive measures.
  4. Data-Driven Decision Making: “Good decisions start with good information” is a principle that PICA stands by. Their inspection services yield high-resolution data, enabling precise assessments of pipeline integrity and aiding in informed decision-making.
  5. Cost-Effectiveness: PICA’s services help in extending the life of existing pipeline infrastructure. By focusing on surgical repairs and proactive maintenance, asset managers can significantly reduce the financial burden of large-scale replacements.
  6. Safety and Reliability: Ensuring the integrity of critical infrastructure is paramount. PICA’s services play a vital role in maintaining the safety and reliability of pipelines, which are essential for the functioning of modern societies.
  7. Sustainability: In an era where sustainability is key, PICA’s approach aligns with global efforts to maintain and efficiently use existing resources. Their services help in minimizing environmental impact by avoiding extensive excavation and construction activities associated with pipeline replacements.
  8. Customized Solutions: PICA’s range of service offerings, from Advanced to Pre-Screening NDT, allows for tailored solutions based on the specific needs of each pipeline system. This customization ensures that every inspection is as effective and relevant as possible.
  9. Expertise and Experience: PICA’s team, with their vast experience and expertise in pipeline inspection and condition analysis, adds an invaluable layer of trust and reliability to their services.
  10. Commitment to Development: Lastly, PICA’s commitment to continuously enhancing their technologies through their Russell NDE partnership and PICA’s methodologies showcases their dedication to being leaders in pipeline inspection and condition analysis.

In conclusion, PICA’s sophisticated inspection services, exemplified by their successful projects like the one at NASTT’s 2016 No-Dig Show, offer a compelling solution for asset managers and pipeline operators. Their technological innovation, comprehensive approach, and commitment to sustainability and reliability make them an indispensable partner in managing critical pipeline infrastructure.