By: Scott Riccardella, Jason Van Velsor, and Roger Royer
Pipeline operators face a multitude of threats, including service, environmental, or operational induced degradation to pipelines and related facilities. Non-Destructive Examination (NDE) is often used to characterize the nature and extent of this degradation. Thus, there is a critical need for reliable NDE as pipeline operators rely extensively on NDE as the basis for validating In-Line Inspection (ILI) results, determining fitness for service, and making repair and other operational decisions. Erroneous or inaccurate characterization of these defects can lead to unexpected leaks or failures, unnecessary and costly repairs, the establishment of an incorrect remaining life or re-assessment interval, and inaccurate (in)validation of ILI results.