Inspectioneering

2004 Inspectioneering Journal Article Index


  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Though oxidation and sulfidation are quite prevalent high temperature corrosion mechanisms in many of our process units, we now come to a few that are not very common, but still deserve some attention to make sure they don’t lead to unexpected failures.

  • 99 Diseases of Pressure Equipment: Casting Defects
    January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Casting defects are an age old problem for our industry that seems to be getting worse as foundries in the older industrialized world shutdown for economic reasons.

  • 99 Diseases of Pressure Equipment: Catastrophic Oxidation (Fuel Ash Corrosion)
    July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    Catastrophic oxidation can occur when certain contaminants are present in a high temperature environment, i.e. inside furnace fireboxes, in our industry. Those contaminants are typically vanadium pentoxide with sulfur oxide or sodium sulfate.

  • Facilities Terrified as Inspection Contractors Continue “Old Fashioned” Methods.
    Partner Content

    It’s a scary thought to think that with all the new advancements in technology, some facilities still rely on traditional inspection contractors that perform out of date procedures. You rely on technology to keep your home and identity safe, so why run the risk of hiring inspection contractors without technological solutions to provide the vital information needed to keep your facility safe.

  • May/June 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    CUI may be the most well known and widespread corrosion phenomena in our industry. It’s also one of the most difficult to prevent because by and large no matter what precautions we take, water eventually gets into the insulation and begins to do it’s dirty work, sometimes sight unseen until process leakage occurs. And it’s not isolated to just insulation. Corrosion under fire-proofing (CUF) is also prevalent in our industry and requires the same type of inspection planning, design prevention, and mitigation that is required for CUI.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Decarburization is the antithesis of carburization and rarely results in equipment failure. However, surface decarburization is often a sign that something more serious is going on, ie high temperature hydrogen attack (HTHA), which is well covered in API RP 941, Steels for Hydrogen Service at Elevated Temperatures and Pressures in Petroleum Refineries and Petrochemical Plants.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    DMW cracking is another fabrication issue that can and does result in equipment failure. It usually occurs at the weld juncture where carbon steel or low alloy steels are welded to austenitic (300 series) stainless steels in high temperature applications. The large difference in coefficient of expansion of the two steels, sometimes exacerbated by thermal cycling, results in cracking at the toe (HAZ) of the weld joining the two materials. Using an austenitic stainless filler material for the DMW junction also increases the stress intensification on the toe of the weld on the ferritic side of the weldment. This type of cracking is most common when temperatures above 800F (425C) are involved, such as in FCCU reactor/regenerations systems, superheaters, reheaters, fired heaters, and hydroprocess equipment. Use of bolted joints, if possible, or nickel base filler materials helps to avoid the DMW cracking problem.

  • May/June 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Chloride cracking of austenitic stainless steels (300 series SS) is an off-shoot of CUI, and there’s nothing really magical about it. If you have insulated solid stainless steel equipment operating in the CUI temperature range you are likely to eventually experience External Chloride Stress Corrosion Cracking (ECSCC).

  • May/June 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    For purposes of this article, external (atmospheric) corrosion is what afflicts process equipment and structural members that are not insulated and exposed to moisture associated with atmospheric conditions, ie rain, condensation from humidity, marine spray, cooling tower mists, industrial pollutants, etc.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    High temperature oxidation is not a real common type of failure in our industry, but it can and does happen when temperatures exceed design maximums. All metals oxidize, even at room temperature, and in many cases that slow oxidation process actually protects the metal from rapid oxidation.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    High temperature sulfidation is probably the most common high temperature corrosion nemesis in the refining industry, since there are very few “sweet” refineries still in operation. Sulfidation corrosion typically is of concern in sour oil services starting at temperatures in the 500F (260C) range.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Corrosion from HCl is a significant problem in many refining and chemical process units, and often the materials solution to HCl corrosion is rather expensive, since the lower cost, more available alloys are usually not resistant to most concentrations of HCl.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Corrosion in the refining industry from HFA is not as widespread a problem as it is with HCl because it is only associated with HF Alkylation Units, which are usually fairly carefully controlled in order to avoid potential for a toxic HFA cloud after a leak.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    When we specify that some equipment (vessels, flanges, fittings, etc.) be overlaid with a corrosion resistant alloy, we need to pay attention to making sure that the chemistry of the top layer of alloy welding, that will be exposed directly to the process fluid, is sufficient to resist degradation from the process environment. This may sound logical, but I’m aware of several cases where weld overlaid surfaces are ground or machined to meet specification tolerances, and in so doing the most resistant part of the alloy overlay is removed.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Inadequate PWHT is one of our pressure equipment nemeses. We normally specify PWHT for a variety of pressure equipment integrity reasons including when we need to lower residual stresses, increase resistance to cracking or soften weld hardness. All for the purpose of prolonging the service life of our equipment and preventing unexpected failures. But this issue is clearly where those old sayings of "Buyer beware" and "You don't get what you expect, you get what you inspect" apply quite often.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Metal dusting is simply a severe form or extension of carburization in which the extensive carbides that form as a result of carburization lead to grains of metal falling out of the tube or piping and being swept away by the process stream.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Problems with naphthenic acid corrosion (NAC) are nearly as old as the refining industry. The first paper on the topic that I knew about was written by one of my early industry supervisors over 40 years ago.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Corrosion from phosphoric acid is another “old knowledge” corrosion issue that effects only a few processes in the chemical and hydrocarbon process industry.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Repair welds can be another undetected and insidious "fabrication defect" that eventually results in equipment failure. Any experienced metallurgist that has completed numerous failure analyses over the years will tell you that periodically they see failures that initiated at the site of a repair weld. Sometimes those repair welds are field repairs, but not infrequently they occurred during original fabrication and were unknown to the purchaser. Typically our standards and specifications do not cover repairs completed by the fabricator, so they believe they are free to do whatever they want to repair a manufacturing or fabrication defect, then grind it flush, finish the fabrication and ship the product.

  • May/June 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Soil corrosion (underground corrosion) is another one of those extensively researched and documented types of corrosion, since so many pipes and pipelines are buried and nearly all storage tanks rest on the soil. An entire industry/ technology is associated with preventing soil corrosion (cathodic protection).

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Speaking of stress raisers, they are another insidious type of flaw that can and do lead to equipment failures. Stress raisers (aka stress intensification sites) can be mechanical or metallurgical notches. Undercutting, physical weld flaws, mismatched thicknesses, and sharp geometric intersections can all become stress raisers. But so too can so-called "metallurgical notches" like one finds at the edge of a weld where the cast structure of the weld pool meets the wrought structure of the heat-affected zone. Equipment in many static services without significant cyclic stresses can tolerate the presence of some stress raisers because of hefty code design margins. But equipment in services with significant fatigue stresses (thermal and mechanical) are especially vulnerable to such notches and deserve special QA/QC attention during design, specification, fabrication, and repairs.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Unlike NAC where we’re still on a learning curve, the knowledge of corrosion by sulfuric acid has not changed much in the last quarter century, and there are many good references for it included in API RP 571.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Cracks along the toe of a weld are not uncommon during fabrication, and can occur for a wide variety of reasons involving the metallurgy and process control of the the same issues covered above on repair welds can apply to repair welds on castings; especially if you are unaware that the foundry or fabricator is trying to salvage a defective casting by covering up porosity and shrinkage cracking with a big glob of weld metal.

  • March/April 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    ASME has an active Post Construction Committee (PCC) for generating standards for in-service inspection. As such, the ASME is no longer just a "new construction" standardization organization. The Subcommittee on Repair and Testing now has 23 chapters in preparation on various methods of conducting repairs (temporary and permanent) on pressure equipment, tanks and piping.

  • Improving the turnaround lifecycle through careful planning, proper execution, and thorough documentation
    Partner Content

    Turnarounds are costly in terms of lost production. In many respects a turnaround can be even more complicated than the initial construction of the facility, so a carefully designed plan will reduce overall costs. After execution, safety reviews, Corrosion Monitoring Program updates, MOC documentation, and PHA Revalidations are a must.

  • Partner Content

    Our proprietary furnace tube inspection system, FTIS™, is an ultrasonic inspection technology capable of rapid, automated fired heater coil inspection in refinery fired heaters. The data captured by our furnace tube inspection system is exceptionally powerful when combined with our LifeQuest™ remaining life assessment capabilities, providing an integrated solution set for refinery fired heaters in the refining and chemical industries.

  • March/April 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Greg Alvarado at Inspectioneering Journal

    Data management is an important issue in today's world. We have data all over the place. Every manager is looking for ways to migrate data from platform to platform to save on the cost of re-gathering data and ways to share output from various platforms to better schedule and coordinate activities.

  • High Temperature Hydrogen Attack (HTHA) Detection at up to 370C (698F)
    November/December 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    Accounts with shop validation on carbon steel samples prior to field trials, on an in-service C 1/2 Mo vessel, were reported at a recent industry conference. The studies were successful in the laboratory and appear to make sense in field trials on a C 1/2 Mo, in-service vessel.

  • November/December 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Julian Speck at TWI Ltd., and Dr. Brian Cane

    Demanding cleaner fuels Environmental regulators drive refiners to introduce bottom-of-the barrel conversion hydroprocessing units, to produce cleaner fuels. These include hydrotreaters and hydrocrackers with reactors that operate at high temperature, and pressure and in the presence of hydrogen. (Catalytic reforming units are in the same category, with respect to the challenge of ensuring the integrity of reactor vessels).

  • November/December 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Richard D. Roberts at Quest Integrity Group

    Reliable "intelligent pig technology" is now readily available to the refining industry which can provide quick / comprehensive inspection to both "convection" and "radiant" sections in process furnace piping coils. Both tabular data formats along with 2D / 3D high-resolution color graphics of the test results are immediately produced on site showing tube/pipe wall thinning, bulging, swelling, and ovality.

  • Interview with John Nyholt - BP NDE Specialist
    September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Greg Alvarado at Inspectioneering Journal

    Exactly two years ago, an interview with John Nyholt appeared in the “IJ”. New ground will be covered in this interchange. We at the IJ thought it might be valuable to spend some time chatting about his background, challenges he has faced recently and what he feels are some of the biggest challenges ahead for the Inspectioneering® community.

  • March/April 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Mark Badrick at Bahrain Petroleum Company

    The title question is often asked and more often than not, impossible to answer. This paper follows on from a previous discussion (Inspectioneering Journal Volume 4 Issue 1 Jan/Feb 1998) relating to the difficulties arising whilst attempting to carry out temperature surveys of furnace tubes using a thermal imager. The issues discussed then i.e. calculation of emissivity and ambient temperatures, reflected heat etc, are still current concerns, but since the writing of that article, an additional equally important challenge has become apparent - "how do we measure the temperature of an externally scaled or fouled tube"? Where the external scale or some other external deposit, such as refractory dust etc. may mask the true tube temperature.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Julian Speck at TWI Ltd., and Peter Mudge at Pi Ltd.

    The impetus for the development of LRUT is that ultrasonic thickness checks for corrosion, erosion, etc. are localised, in that they only measure the thickness of the area under the UT transducer.

  • New API Inspector Certification Endorsement Program (ICEP)
    November/December 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    Several new API inspection recommended practices exist in which inspectors need to be knowledgeable and qualified. This article details some of those standards.

  • March/April 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    API Recommended Practice 571, Damage Mechanisms Affecting Fixed Equipment in the Refining Industry

  • November/December 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By John Reynolds at Intertek

    Unfortunately there is a recurring theme of pressure equipment integrity incidents in the hydrocarbon process industry which has been identified by the API and that is leaks and fires caused by the inadvertent substitution of materials of construction in piping systems - the so called positive materials identification (PMI) incidents.

  • March/April 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Greg Alvarado at Inspectioneering Journal

    In the early days (circa 1988-1991) of introducing the petroleum refining and chemical industries in the US, to the idea that RBI implementation could be valuable many fell into the trap of focusing on how much money could be saved, to the exclusion of risk mitigation. This led to some unfortunate misconceptions that led to misapplication that led to dead ends in how to evergreen or maintain effective RBI programs. It is important to "get back to basics", with an improved perspective, based on experience, of where the evolution of the RBI process is leading us.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Greg Alvarado at Inspectioneering Journal

    The "low hanging fruit" has been harvested in most places. Now comes the challenge of gathering the most bountiful harvest, that which is amongst the leaves and branches, without harming the tree. This will require practical expertise. This will require computational models that narrow the scatter band and are more accurate that are asking the right questions (which requires practical knowledge, technical knowledge and experience = expertise). In this editorial, I will point out some of the pitfalls I see in the inspection and reliability arenas and present some insight and solutions that will help "IJ" readers stay on track and emerge more successful as a result.

  • May/June 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Jonathan D. Dobis at The Equity Engineering Group, Inc., Dana G. Williams at Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC, and David L. Bryan, Jr. at Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC

    Corrosion and fouling in HF Alkylation Units are closely linked to feed quality and operating conditions. This paper outlines the relationship between key operating parameters and corrosion that has been used to develop a set of guidelines to define an operating envelope. These guidelines have been used to benchmark operating units and to help maintenance and inspection groups understand how corrosion is directly affected by operating parameters. An example where this methodology has been used to troubleshoot operating problems is included. A web-based data collection system has been used as a tool to build a database of actual operating conditions found in the unit, and the corresponding problems or damage observed.

  • July/August 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Jonathan D. Dobis at The Equity Engineering Group, Inc., Dana G. Williams at Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC, and David L. Bryan, Jr. at Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC

    The following is the final part of a 2 part series. Part 1 covered the following considerations that are critical in establishing effective reliability and inspection programs for these complex units: - HF Alkylation Process Description - An extensive explanation of how HF alky unit process conditions affect corrosion for the various sections of these types of units. The abstract, introduction, explanation of terms, references, figures and a typical unit PFD are reiterated in part 2 as reference materials.

  • January/February 2004 Inspectioneering Journal
    By Dan Quinn at In TANK Services, Inc.

    Storage tank owners can reap large financial benefits by shifting from a reactive tank repair strategy to a proactive inspection and maintenance program. In reaction to well publicized tank failures in the 80's and the development of API 653 guidelines in 1991, many tank owners started to proactively inspect their tanks and perform significant tank repairs. However, after a lengthy period of focus on inspections and repairs in the 90's, many tank owners have become complacent with respect to tank maintenance.

  • September/October 2004 Inspectioneering Journal

    Zetec acquired Power Generation Business assets located in the R/D Tech facilities primarily in Quebec, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Deep River, Ontario, Canada. Assets include the rights to current and planned products developed by the Power Generation Business. The transaction also involves the transfer of approximately 100 Power Generation Business employees globally.


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