In-the-ditch inspection for Stress Corrosion Cracking (SCC) is an integral part of pipeline condition assessment programs. SCC is typically detected by Magnetic Particle Inspection (MPI). Quantitative depth sizing is then either achieved by sequential grinding or by Ultrasonic Testing (UT). This procedure, is time-consuming, weather-sensitive and user-dependant.
Recent advances in Eddy-Current Array (ECA) technology enabled crack detection and sizing in ferrous materials. The main objective behind the development of these new probes was to determine the optimal set of parameters to obtain a clear discrimination between surface breaking defects, lift-off and permeability changes while still being able to monitor and quantify each signal individually. By multiplexing and leveraging advanced data processing capabilities, this ECA solution allows inspections to be carried out quickly, provide accurate depth sizing and eliminate the need to remove protective coatings. This new approach offers additional benefits such as state-of-the-art imaging, improved surface coverage, ease of deployment and data archiving.
This paper describes the development of a complete solution and its application on pipelines for the detection and sizing of SCC. Potential to replace MPI and UT as the industry gold standard for fast and reliable SCC detection and sizing on carbon steel pipelines is shown.
Key words: Non-Destructive Testing, Stress Corrosion Cracking, Carbon Steel, Eddy Current Array.