2 Reasons To Use Phased Array Ultrasonic Testing Vs. Radiography To Test Pipeline Welds

Posted on: 15 September 2020

When you are laying pipelines for either gas or liquid, the welding connections between the individual pipes are crucial. If they are not near perfect all of the way through, they could break once the pressurized contents start running through the line. If you have been testing the welds using radiography, you should consider the reasons why using phased array ultrasonic testing would be better for your purposes.

1.  Phased Array Testing Is More Portable Than Radiography

One reason why phased array testing is better than radiography is that it is more portable. When using radiography, the x-ray equipment cannot reach pipes out in the field. Instead, the welds must be tested at the machine itself, then transported to the installation site.

While the welds may pass testing using the radiography, depending on the distance and terrain through which it must travel, they could become damaged by the time the pipes reach their destination. Then, you would still have to connect large sections of pipes that would not easily be tested.

However, with phased array testing, the testing equipment is portable. This means that the welds can be completed where the pipeline sits without having to transport them around and risk putting a strain on the welds. If defective welds are found, they can be redone and retested on site.

2.  Phased Array Examination Is More Accurate Detecting Weld Flaws

Another reason that you should use phased array testing to examine welds instead of radiography is that the former is more accurate when it comes to detecting flaws. When x-rays are used during radiography, the images that bounce back to the monitor are often fuzzy and could be inaccurately interpreted.

However, with phased array exams, the equipment uses high-clarity ultrasound to penetrate deep into the welds to find stress cracks, tiny bubbles, and any other signs of a defective weld. Then, the computer reads the signals to give a report, which helps to remove the risk of error that often comes with human interpretations.

Because pipeline welds need to be strong enough to withstand its pressurized contents, you need to have a testing method that will detect any flaws which may put the connection at risk of breaking. Instead of using the older, less reliable testing method of using x-rays, contact a business that offers phased array ultrasonic examination services to find out more about how their testing method will benefit your company.   


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