Inspectioneering
Sponsored Ebook

A Guide to Corrosion Under Insulation Management

The Equity Engineering Group, Inc., September 30, 2021

Overview

Corrosion Under Insulation (CUI) is a form of external corrosion that can be widespread or localized, caused by trapped water/moisture on surfaces covered with insulation. Because these surfaces are not generally available/accessible for visual examination, the onset of corrosion cannot be easily identified, and in extreme cases, severe corrosion with consequential impairment of system integrity can occur.

Corrosion under insulation is a prevalent industry problem affecting thermally insulated equipment in the onshore and offshore oil and gas industries, as well as the petrochemical, specialty chemical, fertilizer, and related industries. It is one of the most well-researched and understood damage mechanisms in the refining and chemical process industries, and yet it still represents an inordinately large percentage of global plant maintenance expenditures. For this reason, exercising good engineering practices during the design phase and throughout the entire lifecycle of equipment requiring thermal insulation is crucial.

When CUI is properly considered and managed (e.g., special emphasis mechanical integrity programs), long-term reliability can be substantially improved and the need to perform frequent inspections that often require significant time and resources can be negated.

This short eBook is designed to provide the reader with a better understanding of what CUI is and how to effectively manage it. It begins with a brief explanation of what causes CUI and how it develops, followed by a discussion on the detection of CUI, including typical damage locations and common inspection techniques. This eBook also discusses useful engineering assessment techniques for evaluating CUI damage and offers practical guidance for qualifying CUI damage on carbon and low-alloy steels using fitness-for-service techniques. Finally, practical steps that can be taken to mitigate CUI damage for new component designs and in-service pressure equipment are outlined.

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A Guide to Corrosion Under Insulation Management

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