Our comprehensive fitness-for-service approach more accurately ensures that the equipment is structurally sound and is within the accepted design margins to ensure industrial safety for employees and the public.
There is great potential for safety issues in the operation of pressure vessels and piping. These can be driving factors in development of safety programs within companies, after an event. Events such as the NDK Crystal explosion greatly heightened the awareness of the consequences of potential failure of pressure vessels in operation. This accident which occurred in 2009, showed that not understanding the potential consequences of an accident, coupled with poor or non-existent maintenance practices, can result in devastating consequences and even death.
SI has assisted clients in establishing programs for understanding the condition of their equipment and implementing programs to promote the safe operation of that equipment and prevent failures.
SI has been asked to be called in when events happen.
- SI has assisted clients with issues such as fire in a reactor to quickly establish the impact and provide the Fitness for Service analysis to get the equipment back online. (Check Rick Document on Fire evaluation)
- SI provided independent oversight on a design process which identified potential catastrophic design flaws which allowed for mitigation prior to failure in a pressure vessel.
- SI was called in to investigate failure / leakage of a bottom head of a vessel which experienced stress corrosion cracking (SCC). This was one of a fleet of vessels operated by the client. The source of the SCC was identified, the condition of the remaining vessels was determined, and the vessels were able to be returned to service with monitoring of known issues on a short term basis, while replacement vessels could be procured. (BWXT case study link)
- SI has performed a fleetwide assessment of critical assets for a major polyethylene producer to allow for continued operation of equipment following a “state of the art” inspection program. This included identification of critical failure mechanisms, evaluation of design of key pieces of equipment, assistance in design of replacement of some aging assets, and establishment of a monitoring program for the fleet.
- SI has worked with clients to evaluate the life of key pieces of equipment to provide a key technical basis for the component to assure that it would not fail while in service. (Ritter case study)