Inspection and acceptance of material and equipment, requiring certification by an independent and competent inspection organization, constitute a significant part of the activities of the S. A. I. Group’s Technical Division. S.A.I.’s Technical Inspections provide objective and reliable evidence as to the quality of purchased materials and equipment and their conformity with the procurement documentation. Technical inspection can be executed, as appropriate, at the mill, forge or foundry, at the plant, works or at the site. The extent, to which the inspection activities apply, depends upon the nature and the scope of the work to be performed and the importance and criticality of the equipment and services involved.
S.A.I. Technical Division may function in a specific and specialist manner or as a multidisciplinary team, as per client’s request, while at all times maintaining:
- An ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems.
- An understanding of professional and engineering procedures.
- An ability to provide effective oral and written contract, procedures, and agreements.
- An appreciation for the global impact of metallurgical engineering profession/practice.
Mechanical inspections may cover items such as:
Pressure vessels, Columns, Heat exchangers, Reactors, Boilers, Furnaces, Incinerators, Storage tanks, Pipe systems, Steel structures, Tubes, Bridges, Cranes, Turbines, Compressors, Fiber reinforced vessels and Pipelines, Plastic pipelines, Diesel engines, Civil Construction Projects, Industrial Machinery, Automotive Engineering, Mechanical Designs.
Electrical inspections may cover items such as:
Rotating Electrical Machinery, Electrical Motors / Generators / Alternators, A. C. Machines / Synchronous or D. C Machines, Instrumental Panels and Instrument, Power plant electrical precision equipment.
Statistical Quality Control
Statistical quality control is based on statistical evaluation of control charts in order to constantly ensure the standard of quality required for finished products.
S. A. I. posses the most up-to-date database of IHS standards to cover every technical aspect of engineering procedures in most manufacturing environments.
Metallurgical Engineering & Inspection
In the field of Metallurgical Engineering, S.A.I. engineers:
- Apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering, prior and during inspection
- Design and conduct experiments and interpret data, for every phase of the project
- Design technically and financially sound metallurgical processes, equipment or materials in a manner that reflect a convenient method of engineering and standards
- Inspect structure-property-processing relationships in metallic materials, requested for inspection
- Provide technical solutions for contemporary issues arising in metallurgical engineering
- Use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for metallurgical engineering practice during project inspection
Welding Engineering & Inspection
S.A.I. inspectors look for Non-Destructive Test (NDT) methods that are used to find “indications” which have to be interpreted according to the inspection procedure for a particular job. “Indications” is inspection language for possible defects. These discontinuities (a fancier name for indications) have to be evaluated with reference to the acceptance criteria for a particular job. After comparison to the criteria they are considered as acceptable or rejected. Certain Non-Destructive Inspection (NDI) methods require special training, written and practical examinations and accumulation of experience.
Visual Inspection (V T)
The importance of visual inspection is often over-looked. A visual test (VT) will provide a wealth of information about a weld. Many weld defects such as porosity, cracks, incomplete fusion, inclusions, overlap, edge melt, and incomplete penetration can be observed with just a simple visual exam. A weld that passes a visual exam has a much higher probability of passing further Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) methods.
X-Rays (R T)
Radiographic weld inspection is performed by pointing a radiographic source (an x-ray tube or a radioactive isotope) to the part of the weld to be inspected and by exposing for a predetermined time a radiographic film to the radiation on the opposite side of the source tip or tube. The resulting film contains information on the internal features of the weld. Variations in film density allow the film interpreter to accept or reject the weld based on comparison to specific hole or wire sizes in or on a pentameter. These hole or wire sizes represent the largest acceptable defect size in a weld. Any indication that is larger than the acceptable wire or hole size is cause for rejection. All the relevant parameters including accept or reject are then recorded on an X-Ray Technique Sheet. The technique sheet and the processed film are usually turned over to the customer at the completion of the job.
Ultrasonic (U T)
Ultrasonic weld inspection is based on the fact that high frequency sound waves out of the range of human hearing can propagate in different materials, and be reflected by internal interfaces and opposite wall surfaces. These waves are generated by piezoelectric transducers of different sizes and frequencies which transform electrical vibrations into mechanical vibrations and vice-versa. These transducers are selected to match the thickness, type, temperature, and configuration of the material to be tested. Signal reflections are evaluated on a computer screen, and by making reference to standard reflectors (normally flat bottom holes carefully machined on specimens of the same material) of given shape and size, the qualified inspector can conclude that if an echo is present where it should not be and if its reflection is larger than that of comparison, then there is an indication that must be evaluated. Additional techniques may be required to determine acceptance or rejection. Ultrasonic testing is capable of detecting thin interfaces normal to the line of propagation of the wave (that X-Rays cannot detect) so that both testing methods complement each other. Ultrasonic testing is becoming one of the most widely used methods of nondestructive testing. Its primary purpose is to detect and characterize internal discontinuities. UT can also measure thickness, detect surface discontinuities, and define bond characteristics
Eddy Current Testing (E T)
Eddy current testing is a rapid and accurate technique used to detect discontinuities in tubing, heat exchangers, condensers, wires, plates, etc. Eddy current testing is also performed for alloy separation and for the determination of treatment conditions. The location of repair welds, girth welds and seam welds may also be detected on ground machined surfaces
Liquid Penetrant (P T)
Liquid Penetrant weld inspection is a sensitive method of detecting and locating discontinuities that are clear and open to the surface. A penetrating liquid dye is applied to the cleaned surface. This dye will seep into surface discontinuities. After a certain amount of time (dwell time), the excess penetrant dye is removed. A developer is then applied that acts like a blotter and draws the remaining penetrant out of the discontinuity. Liquid Penetrant inspection is used for both magnetic and non magnetic materials like aluminum, stainless steel, magnesium, titanium, bronze etc. and will detect extremely small cracks. There are three different types of penetrant used with both visible and flourescent methods. These are classified by how they are removed from the test surface: solvent removable, water washable, and post-emulsifiable. The solvent removable types are most common and highly portable making them ideal for “on site” inspections
Radiographic Examination (RE)
Radiographic examinations are performed to detect and evaluate internal defects and structural variations, including cracks, lack of fusion, incomplete penetration, porosity and inclusions. These tests are performed with Iridium 192, Cobalt isotopes, or low-voltage x-ray. Several dark room trailers are available for on-site development of radiographs
Leak testing for weld inspection is done on containers and piping systems built to hold a liquid or a gas. The tank or piping system is usually pressurized above its design operating pressure and held at that pressure for a specific amount of time. The usual test mediums are air, gas (usually nitrogen), or water. These tests are performed mostly on new construction and are part of the ASME code.
Corrosion Engineering & Inspection
S.A.I. Corrosion Inspections include the following activities:
- Corrosion monitoring/testing
- Surface analysis methods
- Stress corrosion cracking, fatigue and degradation
- Atmospheric, high-temperature, marine, underground corrosion
- Cathodic and Anodic protection
- Corrosion inhibitors
- Protective coatings and surface treatment
- Corrosion-resistant materials
- Electrochemical corrosion measurements
- Case studies and field experience
- Specification of materials
- Analysis of corrosion failures
- Corrosion measurement and inspection
- Analysis of Cathodic Protection
- Development of inspection techniques.
- Failure analysis and assessment
- Material specification and evaluation