Inspectioneering
Explore this topic

Overview of Failure Analysis

It is undeniable that every plant will experience equipment failure at some point during its lifetime. Despite this, avoiding failures is the goal of every asset integrity professional in the oil and gas industry. As such, using Failure Analysis to avoid recurring failures is vital to the industry.

Failure analysis can be defined as “the process of interpreting the features of a deteriorated system or component to determine why it no longer performs its intended function.” Failure analysis involves using deductive logic to find the root causes, either mechanical or human, of a failure. Once that is done, inductive logic is used to find the latent causes, which are most often organizational in nature. Finally, an engineered solution should be determined to help prevent recurrences of the failure in the future.

When it comes to failures that could have been catastrophic but weren’t, a more thorough analysis with specific steps is required. These steps consist of:

  1. Diagnose the failure

  2. Collect background data on the failure

  3. Examine the equipment under low power magnification

  4. Analyze the critical pieces in detail

  5. Determine the physical damage mechanisms behind the failure

  6. Determine any other potential root causes of the failure

Once the causes of the failure have been determined, it is then possible to identify solutions to prevent the failure from happening again. If this cannot be done, then it is important to at least come up with ways to mitigate the damage should the part suffer failure in the future.

Failure analysis is an essential part of maintaining a safe and reliable plant or factory. Because of this, a good failure analysis program should be present in every high quality reliability maintenance program and be implemented at every site to understand the root cause of problems, avoid the recurrence of issues, and reduce the cost of unreliability.

 

Is this definition incomplete? You can help by contributing to it.

Share this Topic

Articles about Failure Analysis
    Companies
    Videos related to Failure Analysis
      White Papers related to Failure Analysis
        Downloads & Resources related to Failure Analysis
          Events related to Failure Analysis
            News related to Failure Analysis

              Inspectioneering Journal

              Explore over 20 years of articles written by our team of subject matter experts.

              Company Directory

              Find relevant products, services, and technologies.

              Job Postings

              Discover job opportunities that match your skillset.

              Case Studies

              Learn from the experience of others in the industry.

              Event Calendar

              Find upcoming conferences, training sessions, online events, and more.

              Industry News

              Stay up-to-date with the latest inspection and asset integrity management news.

              Blog

              Read short articles and insights authored by industry experts.

              Acronyms

              Commonly used asset integrity management and inspection acronyms.

              Asset Intelligence Reports

              Download brief primers on various asset integrity management topics.

              Videos

              Watch educational and informative videos directly related to your profession.

              Expert Interviews

              Inspectioneering's archive of interviews with industry subject matter experts.