Case Study

Simultaneous Crack and Metal Loss Inspection

The Challenge

A scheduled MFL metal loss inspection of a 48" diameter offshore loop line was halted when the caliper run encountered a severe dent. This 48 km (30 mile) pipeline is a crucial asset of the operators. Due to the identification of a severe dent successful inspection had now become a difficult challenge as a new technology would be required to inspect the loop line. 

Up close view of a pipeline crack

The Solution

After evaluating available solutions, the operator asked NDT Global to inspect the pipeline. A combination run consisting of Evo 1.0 ultrasonic crack, Evo 1.0 ultrasonic metal loss, and ultrasonic geometry tools delivered a comprehensive inspection in a single run. These technologies accurately detect, locate, and size metal loss and axially oriented crack-like anomalies, providing high-resolution mapping and XYZ coordinates for the pipeline. In particular, the company’s innovative Enhanced Sizing for ultrasonic crack inspections removes depth sizing boundaries that previously existed for depths above 4 mm (0.16 in.). 

The Results

  • High-accuracy inline inspection using NDT Global’s ultrasonic technologies successfully detected metal loss and crack-like features 

  • Critical reporting threshold for cracks 1 mm (0.04 in) depth, 25 mm (0.98 in) length) was maintained 

  • Results will guide future inspection frequency, using trend analysis, and anomaly tracking, while applying only the most stringent internationally accepted codes, standards and specifications 

  • Data and recommendations enable the operator to prevent pipeline failures by; removing or repairing significant defects, determine the interval between future inspections with or without repair of identified defects and calculate maximum allowable operating pressure (MAOP).


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