Applus RTD, the global leader in the provision of integrity technology services, is celebrating the successful completion of the latest advanced non- destructive testing (ANDT) project to enhance its RTD INCOTEST technology to provide a unique solution for unpiggable subsea pipelines.
The technology was developed by Applus RTD’s in-house research and development team to cope with the peculiar environment, such high depths, where only remote operated vehicles (ROV) can be used and increase the productivity of the inspections. The result of the tests marks the latest success for the system.
Domenico Bellistri, RTD INCOTEST specialist, Applus RTD, was delighted with the outcome: “This successful project was carried out with our own technology which allows multiple average wall thickness measurements to be performed without direct contact with the inspected object. In particular, with the new multiplexer module, it is now possible to collect up to 12 readings in less than 30 seconds on recorded positions down to a depth of 3000 metres (9000 feet). The project was challenging for a number of reasons, not least the water depth at which the pipelines are located so we are extremely pleased that we have been able to deliver such a positive result for the subsea segment of the offshore market.”
RTD INCOTEST (an acronym for INsulated Component TEST) is a unique corrosion survey method that allows ferrous objects to be surveyed without, in contrast with ultrasonics, the need to make contact with the surface. As a result, measurements can be performed on objects even if they are covered with insulation, asbestos, fire proofing, concrete or any other kind of coating. The usual cost of removing insulation or installing scaffolding can be also reduced by using rope access or by mounting the measuring sensor on an extension pole.
The process of taking a measurement starts when a sensor is placed on top of the insulation. By means of a pulsed, low frequency magnetic field, eddy currents are generated in the material. By measuring the duration of the currents, a thickness calculation is made.
Mr Bellistri continued: “The Subsea RTD INCOTEST is a major advancement in non-destructive testing. Its development not only adds to our portfolio of products that are changing the industry’s approach to advanced NDT, but is also testament to the talent and dedication of our team at Applus RTD.”
The system can be used on material with a thickness of up to 65mm and on high temperature objects.