Exova Develops Custom Cracking Test
Independent testing company Exova Group Limited has announced a new, customizable oil and gas pipeline testing method for cracking.
The UK-based company says the new method provides more robust test results for Stress Orientated Hydrogen Induced Cracking (SOHIC).
The new test, developed by Exova's corrosion experts, will help the qualification of materials against cracking in severe environments, the company said.
SOHIC is a cracking mechanism that affects carbon and low-alloy steels in wet sour service. At least nine pipelines have failed from SOHIC in the past 20 years, and this type of cracking has been found in numerous pressure vessels, according to Exova. This type of cracking is generally, although not exclusively, found adjacent to a weld.
The new method involved a custom-made test rig manufactured to Exova's specifications that enables pipelines to be bent and twisted to simulate the residual stress adjacent to a weld.
According to Exova, the company can create a "live" environment by controlling the level of loading, resulting in more well-rounded testing.
"As a business, we look to continually innovate and develop new testing methods that will safeguard our customers' operations," Dr. Chris Fowler, Exova's global director of corrosion and the lead scientist in developing the method, said in an announcement.
"In this case, we have developed the SOHIC testing system to help ensure pipeline integrity in the oil and gas industry, particularly as exploration is now entering harsher environments."
Fowler received NACE International Fellow Honor recognition in April for the new test method. The NACE Fellow Honor award recognizes contributions in corrosion prevention.
Founded in 2008, Exova has locations in 22 countries and offers testing and advisory capabilities for a range of sectors, including aerospace, calibration and metrology, defense, environmental, fire safety, industrial, infrastructure, oil and gas, and transportation. Areas of specialty include coatings, materials testing, corrosion and structures.
For more information: www.exova.com.