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I asked this question on another thread but don't remember getting an answer so I'll ask it here.
Do you routinely UT pipe welds?
If so what industry? Production? Field welds?
What region or area?
I'd be interested in any other particulars you want to add.
I do a few here in the shop, but we are a Structural fabricator so it's mainly large diameter and I shoot it parallel to the long axis and perpendicular to the weld and when the size gets too small (to a degree) I just use a little more couplant to help out with the rocking of the transducer. I have noticed that you have to be a little more particular with your geometry than with beams or columns. I don't see that many full pen joints with pipe in this field but we do have a 3 or 4 per year, if I was nailed down and had to give a count.
I would think other fields would encounter a lot more UT of pipe than I would.
Some industries use UT for pipe welds routinely. One area is in power plants for inservice inspection. Especially Nuclear Plants.
Another area where UT is widely being used lately is pipelines where mechanized welding is used. Particulary if a narrow weld groove is used with GMAW welding. The steep angle of the weld prep makes it difficult if not impossible to detect much of the lack of sidewall fusion. Whereas, Automated UT (AUT) or compterized UT, using an array of search units focused for various zones in the weld will detect these flaws. Each zone is intended to represent 1 fill. They use a combination of pitch catch, pulse echo, and TOFD search units.
It really depends on your customers requirements. If they decide to go with UT then so be it. Some regions, such as Canada, I believe, use both AUT and x-ray for pipelines.
If you are interested in learning more about this, go to www.ndt.net.
Thanks for the replies. We work quite a bit in piping and don't see much UT but I've seen it mentioned some here, hence my question.
My old UT instructer had several different tranducer shoes that were radiused to fit the od of various pipe sizes. He had them special made in a machine shop from lexan. If I remeber right, he also had a different calibration procedure for each of them.
He was alot better at UT than I'll ever be...
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