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Research Papers: NDE

High-Density Polyethylene Piping Butt-Fusion Joint Examination Using Ultrasonic Phased Array

[+] Author and Article Information
Caleb Frederick, Allen Porter

 Structural Integrity Associates, 11515 Vanstory Drive, Suite 125, Huntersville, NC 28078

David Zimmerman

 Duke Energy, 526 South Church Street EC076, Charlotte, NC 28202

J. Pressure Vessel Technol 132(5), 051501 (Aug 25, 2010) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4001212 History: Received September 03, 2009; Revised December 17, 2009; Published August 25, 2010; Online August 25, 2010

With the increasing use of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) piping for nuclear applications, nondestructive evaluation is an important tool for evaluation of the integrity in fused joints. This paper will discuss the method of using ultrasonic phased array for inspecting butt-fusion (BF) joints in HDPE piping. The benefit of phased array is the ability to perform a volumetric inspection using multiple angles, which greatly increases the probability of detection of defects and allows the data to be analyzed using a representative two-dimensional image of the joint. It has been determined that successfully producing BF joints is highly dependent on environmental and mating-surface conditions. The primary defects of concern are lack-of-fusion, an area of the joint where there is no bond, cold fusion, an area of partial bond, and inclusion. Phased array has successfully demonstrated the ability of detecting and characterizing these defects using low frequency ultrasound. Factors addressed include joint location, wall thickness, material temperature, transducer wedge material, and manual versus automated data acquisition.

Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

Cross-sectional view with beam coverage using two probes

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Figure 2

Calibration block for 4 in. (102 mm) wall thickness

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Figure 3

Ultrasonic responses from 1/32 in. (0.8 mm) vertically stacked notches

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Figure 4

Ultrasonic responses from 1/16 in. (1.6 mm) diameter vertically stacked holes

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Figure 5

Ultrasonic responses from vertically stacked 1/32 in. (0.8 mm) diameter holes

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Figure 6

Detection of midwall and far-surface 1/32 in. (0.8 mm) diameter holes

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Figure 7

Cross-sectional view and beam coverage using one probe

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Figure 8

Calibration block for up to 1.3 in. wall thickness

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Figure 9

Sensitivity level established using near-surface 1/32 in. (0.8 mm) diameter hole

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Figure 10

Backwall and ID geometry responses in a “good” joint

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Figure 11

Encoded C-Scan image of “good” joint

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Figure 12

Encoded Polar view image of “good” joint

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Figure 13

Cross-sectional view from destructive analysis of “good” joint

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Figure 14

Cold fusion in joint

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Figure 15

Encoded C-Scan image of “bad” joint

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Figure 16

Encoded Polar view image of “bad” joint

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Figure 17

Cross-sectional view from destructive analysis of cold fusion in joint

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Figure 18

Side view of joint after destructive verification of cold fusion

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