Since 1972, we have been providing solutions for companies and industries that require in-depth technical knowledge and proven performance in the fields of engineering design and analysis, thermal and fluid sciences, instrumentation, and testing.

Problem solving is what we do and what we deliver. It is our commitment to provide the most comprehensive design, analysis, and testing services with an unsurpassed level of engineering integrity and skill. This devotion to quality stems from the two basic principles on which the company was founded - technical excellence and a passion to serve. 


Our Capabilities

Acoustic Emission Testing

Acoustic Emission Testing

Stress Engineering Services is a world-renowned authority in Acoustic Emission Testing (AET). Our expertise extends beyond the mere ability to conduct AET; we use our immense capabilities and experience to fully analyze AET results to determine how they impact fitness for service.

AET is a powerful, non-intrusive inspection technique to verify the structural integrity of pressure vessels, spheres, high-temperature reactors and piping, coke drums, above-ground storage tanks, cryogenic storage tanks, and more. Because the inspection is performed externally and avoids costly shut-downs, AET can save users millions of dollars annually. There are other cost-saving advantages of AET as well.

Learn more about AET at the Stress Engineering Services website.


Brittle Fracture Assessments

Brittle Fracture Assessments

At Stress Engineering Services, we use a comprehensive approach to identifying susceptible equipment, executing the brittle fracture analysis, and performing the process hazards analyses to evaluate and develop mitigation for at-risk vessels and piping. With this approach, the equipment is evaluated using Part 3 of API-579 / ASME FFS-1 Fitness for Service methods to develop a minimum allowable temperature (MAT) curve. Process hazards scenarios are developed using the dynamic and sequence driven methodologies to compare to the equipment MAT curve. If adequate mitigation cannot be attained through normal means (administrative controls, alarms, interlocks) additional computational analyses is performed and potentially justifying the fitness for service of the equipment under this excursion condition.

Learn more about Brittle Fracture at the Stress Engineering Services website.


API 579 Fitness-for-Service Assessments

API 579 Fitness-for-Service Assessment

Our FFS engineers are highly experienced in the proper application of these advanced techniques. They are committed to providing reliable solutions that are not only financially feasible and structurally sound, but help improve safety, reliability, and profitability. Serving the oil refining, petro-chemical, chemical, power generation, and pipeline industries, Our FFS experts combine unmatched experience and the most effective engineering tools to solve problems in a number of plant components including FCCU's, coke drums, pressure vessels, reactors, heaters, boilers, power generation equipment, piping, pipelines, turbines, and structures.

Learn more about Fitness-for-Service at the Stress Engineering Services website.


Engineering Assessments, Field Services & Monitoring, Materials Engineering, Testing Services, and more

Stress Engineering Services, Inc. provides timely and cost-effective engineering solutions to improve plant and refinery on-stream efficiency, safety, and reliability. In addition to the above services, the Downstream Plant Services Practice at Stress Engineering offers the following:

  • Field Instrumentation & Health Monitoring
  • Vibration Monitoring & Remediation
  • Plant Turnaround Support
  • Fire Damage Assessments
  • Materials Engineering
  • Coke Drums
  • Failure Analysis
  • Pressure Vessels & Piping Engineering
  • Creep Testing & Omega Analysis
  • Welding Engineering
  • Fluid Dynamics

Stress Engineering Services's Inspectioneering Content

Piping Vibration Assessments
July/August 2016 Inspectioneering Journal
By Jacob Manuel, P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc., and Ralph E. King P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

An overview of process piping vibration and evaluating piping systems in vibration service to reduce harmful vibrations.

The Use of Miniature Test Specimens in  Fitness-for-Service Evaluation
May/June 2016 Inspectioneering Journal
By Douglas Marriott at Stress Engineering Services Inc., Shannon Read at Stress Engineering Services Inc., and Arun Sreeranganathan at Stress Engineering Services Inc.

Aging equipment, along with more aggressive service, makes it more important than ever to carry out fitness-for-service (FFS) assessments in support of run/repair/replace decisions. Testing material in the service-degraded condition enables quantification of the material condition and provides increased accuracy in FFS evaluations of these components.

High Temperature Hydrogen Attack (HTHA): Life Assessment Methods for Carbon Steel and Carbon 0.50% Mo Materials
November/December 2015 Inspectioneering Journal
By Ralph E. King P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc., and Brian Olson at Stress Engineering Services Inc.

To ensure the mechanical integrity and fitness-for-service (FFS) of equipment, facility managers, reliability engineers, and inspection technicians must understand the HTHA damage mechanism.

In-Place Pipe Support Load Testing & Hanger Surveys – Part of a Best in Class Fitness-for-Service Program
July/August 2015 Inspectioneering Journal
By Lange Kimball at Stress Engineering Services, Joe Frey, PE at Stress Engineering, Inc., and Britt Bettell at Stress Engineering Services

This article introduces portions of a “Best-In-Class” Fitness-for-Service (FFS) program that includes the performance of regular visual inspections of pipe supports and hangers, coupled with in-situ load testing of suspect supports. This program can give the plant engineer the knowledge he needs to make sound operational and maintenance decisions.

Combining High Resolution In-Line Geometry Tools and Finite Element Analysis to Improve Dent Assessments
May/June 2015 Inspectioneering Journal
By Rhett Dotson, P.E. at Stress Engineering Services

Historically, regulations regarding dent severity have been governed by one of two metrics: dent depth or strain. In the case of the former, plain dents with a depth up to 6% of the nominal diameter are permitted in both gas and liquid pipelines. However, many operators typically set stricter limits on dent depth targeting those above a depth of 2% for evaluation.

November/December 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
By Alphonse W. Hegger Jr., P.E. at Stress Engineering Services

Today, more than ever, refinery operators are focused on maintaining safe operations for their employees and extending the life cycle of valuable operating equipment to optimize efficiencies and avoid expensive unforeseen shutdowns. When process unit corrosion assessments, RBI methodologies, and IOWs are properly integrated into refining operations, the result is improved safety and longer run times.

Corrosion Under Insulation And Best-fit Solutions
July/August 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
By Brian J. Fitzgerald at Stress Engineering Services

As any refining or petrochemical plant manager knows, corrosion can occur on insulated piping at any facility, and is particularly difficult to prevent, track, and mitigate. Corrosion under insulation (CUI) has been a major challenge for the petrochemical and refining industries since the first pipelines were insulated with wrappings.

March/April 2014 Inspectioneering Journal
By Bobby Wright, P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, and Ralph E. King P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

Recently, Inspectioneering Journal sat down with Stress Engineering’s Bobby Wright and Ralph King to discuss how companies can better transfer and preserve industry knowledge.

Auto-Refrigeration / Brittle Fracture Prevention And Process Safety Mitigation
November/December 2013 Inspectioneering Journal
By Ralph E. King P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

Auto-refrigeration is a process where an unintentional and/or uncontrolled phase change of a hydrocarbon from a liquid state to a vapor occurs, resulting in a very rapid chilling (refrigeration) of the liquid containing local equipment and/or piping. This phenomenon can result in a catastrophic ‘break-before-leak’ scenario commonly referred to as brittle fracture.

High Temperature Life Assessment
May/June 2013 Inspectioneering Journal
By Greg Garic at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

Predicting the remaining life of components operating in the creep regime is one of the trickiest problems encountered in the fitness-for-service (FFS) world.

Fitness-for-Service Assessment: Severe Local Corrosion
March/April 2013 Inspectioneering Journal
By Greg Garic at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

If an operator finds cracking in a furnace waste heat boiler, excessive thinning in an absorption tower, or severe bulging in a converter, FFS assessments—not standard code analyses—are needed to evaluate the unit’s mechanical integrity. FFS assessments, according to the American Petroleum Institute (API), are “quantitative engineering evaluations that are performed to demonstrate the structural integrity of an in-service component containing a flaw or damage.”

Evaluating Fitness for Service of Damaged Equipment
September/October 2012 Inspectioneering Journal
By Peter Carter, PhD, PE at Stress Engineering, Inc., Joe Frey, PE at Stress Engineering, Inc., and Mike Guillot, PhD, PE at Stress Engineering, Inc.

An all too familiar scenario in power plants is one in which an inspection finding occurs late in an outage and consequently, the return to service date may need to be postponed to allow time for corrective action. Historically, cracks or thinned spots were typically repaired without question.

Equipment Vibration Problems
March/April 2011 Inspectioneering Journal
By Lyle Breaux P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc., Eric Luther P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc., and Scott McNeill Ph.D., P.E. at Stress Engineering Services

The most common equipment vibration problems are often solved in industry without the use of specialty engineering resources. Routine vibration problems-from machinery imbalance and misalignment to simple cases of noise and resonance-are often addressed at the plant level without help from consultants.

January/February 2011 Inspectioneering Journal
By Leo Vega at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

Describes a non-destructive sampling procedure which records and preserves the topography of a metallographic specimen as a negative relief on a plastic film (replica).

May/June 1997 Inspectioneering Journal
By John Brear at ERA Technology Ltd., John Williamson at ERA Technology Ltd., and Bobby Wright, P.E. at Stress Engineering Services

Reformer catalyst tubes are commonly manufactured from high strength, creep and corrosion resistant alloys. They are relatively thick walled and are usually produced by centrifugal casting. Their lives are limited by creep, driven by a combination of internal pressure and through-wall thermal stresses generated by operational transients. The typical composition for alloys for reforming service is 25/20 Cr/Ni with the generic reference HK40.

November/December 1995 Inspectioneering Journal
By Richard S. Boswell, P.E. at Stress Engineering Services, Inc.

Evaluations of aged and critical service vessels such as FCCU's and Delayed Cokers have been aided by the addition of two physical measurements referred to as structural characterizations. These are placed in perspective with the classic description provided by John Reynolds in his presentation of a multidisciplinary team effort in Fitness for Service (FFS) evaluations.

February 15, 2017, Houston, Texas

Stress Engineering and Construction, Inc. would like to invite you to a special seminar that will provide an overview on practical project management principles as well as help you understand why organizational behaviors seem to counter the efficient execution of projects.

December 6, 2016, Houston, Texas

This one day workshop will provide an overview of corrosion and high temperature damage mechanisms associated with Refineries and the Chemical Processing Industry (CPI).

September 20, 2016, Houston, Texas

Stress Engineering Services, Inc. will be presenting a six-session seminar beginning Tuesday, September 20, 2016, to address many of the current topics impacting pressure vessels today, including design for high pressure, fracture mechanics, and fatigue.

July 28, 2016, Houston, Texas, USA

The Technology Assessment Group (TAG) is a Stress Engineering Services initiative that is concentrated on emerging technologies in the energy industry and the evaluation of these technologies using advanced engineering-based methods involving monitoring, materials, analysis, and testing.

August 8, 2016, Mason, Ohio, USA

The 2016 High Temperature Life Assessment Conference, taking place on August 8 - 10, 2016 in Mason, OH, will focus on API 579 assessments, remaining life assessments, NDE for High Temperature applications, Cyclical Service (creep fatigue), and high temperature hydrogen attack.

September 13, 2016, New Orleans, Louisiana

This September, Stress Engineering will be hosting a 3 1/2 day workshop in New Orleans, Louisiana providing training in the fitness-for-service evaluation methods of the API 579-1/ASME FFS-1 Standard.

December 1, 2015, Houston, Texas

This presentation will detail several instances where a more thorough understanding of process engineering has helped to improve various aspects of Reliability.

February 16, 2016, Houston, Texas

Stress Engineering Services will be hosting a Coke Drum Reliability Workshop on February 16-17, 2016. The purpose of this workshop is to provide updates on the latest coke drum technology and to continue to discuss and develop "Best Practices" in key areas to improve coke drum reliability, performance, and safety.

March 5, 2015, Houston, TX, USA

Join this free Pipeline Integrity Workshop covering topics such as engineering based integrity management, threat assessment, finite element modeling, composite repair, in-situ monitoring, and more.

September 23, 2014, Various Locations

This 1 day seminar will demonstrate how plant engineers can assess vibration of fixed equipment using a combination of industry best practices, relevant codes and standards, field measurements, calculations and computer modeling.

September 9, 2014, Houston, TX, USA

A metallurgical failure analysis is often the most critical first step in identifying a problem that has occurred in a metallic component or a structure resulting in its inability to perform its intended function. A variety of characterization techniques are available at the disposal of an engineer investigating a failure.

July 8, 2014, Houston, TX, USA

This presentation will demonstrate how plant engineers can utilize industry standards such as API 579, along with best practices for measurement and analysis, to evaluate vibration induced fatigue.

September 16, 2014, New Orleans, LA, USA

This course will provide training in the fitness-for-service evaluation methods of the API 579-1/ASME FFS-1 Standard. Attendees will learn the basic principles and methodology for Level 1 and 2 assessment of damaged equipment.

May 13, 2014, Houston, TX, USA

Join Us On May 13 Presenter: Dr. Chris Alexander, P.E.Stress Engineering Services - HoustonFor the better part of the past 20 years, Stress Engineering has been integrally involved in evaluating composite repair technology for high pressure piping and pipelines. The pipeline industry has funded numerous research programs, as well as efforts sponsored by composite repair companies. In this presentation, Chris Alexander will provide an overview of the current "state of the...

January 30, 2014, Houston, TX, USA

Date: January 30, 2014Time: 8am – 5pmPlace: Stress Engineering Services13610 Westland East Blvd., Houston, TX 77041 This workshop will provide an introduction on how to have an effective auto-refrigeration / brittle fracture prevention program. It will highlight PHA methods that can effectively identify potential auto-refrigeration scenarios and provide insight into developing effective mitigation methods. You will come away from this workshop with a greater understanding of this process safety hazard and...

September 17, 2013, Beaumont and Corpus Christi, TX, USA

Join a free Lunch and Learn presentation on FFS Assessments on Corroded Equipment, hosted by Scott Blouse of Stress Engineering Services. Please refer to the details below: Beaumont-area Lunch & Learn Title: Lunch & Learn Series: FFS Assessments on Corroded EquipmentDate: September 17, 2013Time: 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM CDTLocation: Mcm Elegante Beaumont , 2355 I-10 South, Beaumont, TX 77705

July 23, 2013, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Course Highlights: API 579 / ASME FFS-1 Overview Failure Analysis Bolted Flange Connections Mechanical Repairs Vibration Failures (Fixed Equipment) Material Properties Inspection and Testing (RBI & Inspection Methods) Principles of Corrosion (Case Studies) Cracking Welding & Welding Repair Various Failure Mechanisms Who Should Attend? This seminar is for plant and reliability engineers, maintenance...

July 9, 2013, Various Locations

Houston, TX - Brady's Landing RSVP: July 9, 2013: Acoustic Emission Testing (AET), presented by Glenn Aucoin September 10, 2013: Pressure Vessel Certification, presented by Richard Biel November 5, 2013: Embrittlement and Brittle Fracture Mechanisms in Steels, presented by Brian Olson and Scott Bouse Metairie, LA - Andrea's Restaurant RSVP: July 9, 2013: Assessment of Brittle Fracture, presented by Greg Garic...

Stress Engineering Services, April 28, 2016

Stress Engineering Services, Pro-Surve Technical Services, and Calculated Controls jointly announced the forming of a strategic alliance designed to offer refineries, chemical, petro-chemical plants, and power stations a coordinated planning-to-completion solution for turnarounds, projects, and fire damage assessments.

Press Release, June 4, 2015

Stress Engineering Services, Inc., a global leader in consulting engineering services and solutions, has officially launched Stress Engineering and Construction, Inc. (SE&C) as a wholly owned subsidiary to provide expert engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services to the downstream and midstream markets.

Stress Engineering Services Inc., February 11, 2015

This week, Stress Engineering Services, Inc., announced that Dr. Joe R. Fowler has stepped down from his role as President and has been replaced by former Executive Vice President Jack E. Miller.

Stress Engineering Services, November 6, 2014

Stress Engineering Services, Inc., a global leader in consulting engineering services and solutions, has acquired Efird Corrosion International, Inc., a technical service and research company specializing in corrosion testing and analysis.

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