When launching the OmniScan multi-element ultrasonic defect search device™ X3 at the end of 2019, Olympus had designed it to make it a powerful but easy-to-use multi-element ultrasonic inspection tool (PAUT) Because it is highly versatile and even supports the total focusing method (TFM), inspectors who use it have all the confidence to make decisions.
Members of the Italian Welding Institute (Istituto Italiano della Saldatura, IIS) are regulars in Olympus NDT equipment and were among the first to use the OmniScan X3 defect search device. The IIS consists of a non-profit association and three limited liability companies, which provide certification (IIS CERT), training (IIS PROGRESS) and services (IIS SERVICE) to engineers in Italy and abroad.
Simone Rusca, head of training, controls and inspections at the IIS, is responsible for organising the training. He explains: "The IIS gave its first training in 1951. Currently, we train about 1000 people per year: welding engineers, welding inspectors, NDT levels 1 to 3, etc. The participants in our training come from different sectors, mainly from the oil and gas industry, but also from construction, railways, automotive, marine, aeronautics and aerospace."
"We provide training on a range of NDT methods, such as those described in ISO 9712 (qualification and certification of NDT staff). These methods include resuscration testing, video and video control, radiographic control and, of course, ultrasound control, both with conventional techniques and with advanced control techniques, such as multi-element or flight time diffraction (TOFD) technology."
The importance of taking advantage of state-of-the-art training equipment
The IIS has been using Olympus equipment for about 20 years. Simone Rusca explains: "We always want to use state-of-the-art equipment as part of our training, as our participants benefit greatly. This state-of-the-art equipment includes, of course, the OmniScan X3, but also new elements, probes and software made by Olympus."
"Our NDT specialists are very happy and satisfied with the new equipment. We currently use OmniScanX3 with two different probes: a 32-piece linear network and a 64-item linear network. We use both multi-item ultrasound acquisition technology andfull matrix capture(FMC) acquisition technology; in general, it is this equipment that we use to demonstrate to our participants the sensitivity of these new techniques and the ease of use of the device. The reactions of the participants and our trainers are very positive; equipment is an excellent tool to improve their skills."
Simone Rusca adds: "Another key advantage for us is the great versatility of the OmniScan X3, which can adapt to various inspection applications. Participants in our courses usually inspect many different components for different indications and defects, and the OmniScan X3 lends itself perfectly to this need for adaptability. »
Teaching the TFM method
The OmniScan X3 defect search device fully supports the total focusingmethod(TFM). Inspection of components using the TFM method provides increased clarity and resolution, which ensures better detection of small defects, such as those caused by early attack by high-temperature hydrogen (HTHA). The OmniScan X3 defect search device can display four TFM modes simultaneously, making it easier to interpret and sizing defects.
OmniScan X3 defect search device with TFM feature
Commenting on the TFM method, Rusca said, "We are integrating it into our training, and technicians are very happy and pleased that it is now available on the OmniScan X3. However, the main challenge with new techniques, such as the TFM method, is that they are not yet fully standardized; therefore, it is often difficult to give an accurate answer, because we cannot compare the TFM results with those of a reference procedure. Nevertheless, in absolute terms, the sensitivity is very good."
A solid collaborative relationship
The close collaboration between Olympus and THE IIS is mutually beneficial. The IIS has a large number of highly qualified NDT inspectors, who have a great deal of theoretical and practical knowledge. Their contribution and understanding of the NDT and equipment field help Olympus better understand the needs of its customers.
Rusca adds, "I think this collaboration reflects the setting of standards of excellence in training and equipment. We are always looking for new technologies, solutions and advice to improve NDT methods, and we greatly appreciate Olympus' contribution in this regard."