IRC Engineering Services Pvt. Ltd.

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Fitness-For-Service Analysis: Needs | Advantages | Highlights & More

by Ishita Kapoor on December 20, 2018


The main focus of Fitness-For-Service analysis is evaluating whether an equipment has downgraded in service and can carry on its intended function properly. 

This approach comprises in a rational decision process, enabling the engineer to decide whether the system can be controlled safely either as is, with reinforced inspection, after a requalification, or after a service or repair.


Fitness for service can be applied when:

  • The equipment design is not fully compliant with the relevant codes.
  • The equipment experienced an impact in service, during handling or in transit.
  • The non-destructive testing and equipment inspection have noticed defects beyond the admissible limits or those that have happened too early.
  • The equipment has never been examined, or only partly; the equipment acquired is old.


  • Feasibility of avoiding to remove the equipment from service prematurely which should only have to be returned at term.
  • Financial solution which is more economical than the replacing of the equipment.
  • Creating an administrative file to obtain a derogation.
  • Optimal utilization of the equipment based on precise assessment of its abilities.


IRC’s Fitness-for-Service (FFS) engineering assessment is a multi-disciplinary method for assessing mechanical components to decide if they are fit for continued service. 

The typical result of an FFS evaluation is a “go/no-go” decision on continued operation. An assessment of remaining life or examination intervals may also be part of such an evaluation, along with remediation of the degradation mechanism.

IRC’s methodology is based on the approach executed by a team of engineers who specialize in pressurized equipment technology, corrosion, material, structural analysis and inspection. The statutory requirements concerning the equipment are also taken care of.


  • Based on non-destructive testing, the Fitness for service methodology includes the following steps:
  • Equipment integrity and residual life linked to kinetics,
  • Guidance concerning the integrity due to future conditions.
  • Pressurized equipment (reactor, heat exchangers, columns, LPG tanks),
  • Offshore pipelines & risers.
  • Onshore pipelines,
  • Atmospheric storage tanks which includes cryogenic (LNG),
  • The methodology can be expanded to other equipment depending upon the circumstance.
  • The damage mechanisms correlate to the below non-restrictive list:
  • Stress Corrosion Cracking (SCC),
  • Metallurgical damages (embrittlement, intermediate phases)
  • Localised corrosion, whether general, under insulation or pitting
  • Fatigue (thermal or mechanical),
  • Creep,
  • Crack-like flaws


Here are the features of FFS and Remaining Life:

  1. Flaw Type Detection: This includes-
  • Corrosion
  • Brittle fracture
  • Fatigue
  • Crack-like flaws
  • Creep
  • Hydrogen embrittlement
  • Stress corrosion cracking
  • Dents and shell deformations
  • High-temperature hydrogen attack

2. Fitness for Service Application: This includes-

  • Fired heaters
  • High-energy piping
  • Turbines
  • Pipelines
  • Power lines
  • Headers
  • Pressure vessels
  • Storage tanks

3. Advanced Creep Testing: Remaining Life Assessment Based on Creep Testing – IRC’s advanced creep testing service includes reliable and accurate life assessment of components prone to creep damage. This facility provides a higher level of accuracy when it comes to life assessment techniques based on actual creep property of components. Creep testing assessments lets operators optimize operating conditions, decide effective inspection intervals and extend component life.

IRC has carried out numerous projects for FFS on Piping operating at Temperature of Creep.

4. Pipeline Defect Assessment: IRC has a unique combination of major industry fracture mechanics expertise with integrity management experience, data analysis and software.

Our integrity management tools help us to support our clients with consulting and software solutions whether they are handling anomaly response plans, fitness-for-service assessments strain analysis of dents and deformations or failure analysis.

About IRC Engineering Pvt. Ltd.

IRC is one of the fastest growing Testing and Inspection company in India. We at IRC provide Non-Destructive Testing, Destructive Testing, Advanced NDT, Third Party Inspection, Condenser Testing, Electrical Testing, Residual Life Assessment of Power Plant, O&M Services, Fitness For Service, Civil Testing and Training services.

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Ishita KapoorFitness-For-Service Analysis: Needs | Advantages | Highlights & More

Why use Ultrasonic Phased Array instead of Radiography?

by Ishita Kapoor on September 8, 2018

Radiography and ultrasound are the commendatory nondestructive testing (NDT) techniques that can volumetrically inspect welds and components for various defects like porosity, lack of fusion, cracks etc.
Choosing the right option often depends on external process decisions or small distinctions in the detection capability for a particular test. However, Ultrasound has progressed as a replacement for Radiography, not just in practice but also in the codes of major organizations like API (American Petroleum Institute) and ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers).

PA is often incorporated with time-of-flight diffraction (TOFD) while the inspectors use acquisition units and scanners that can accommodate both the methods simultaneously.

Here are the Typical Advantages of Ultrasound in comparison with Radiography:

  • Accurate sizing of defect height and less number of rejects or repair while using Engineering Critical Assessment:
    • Ultrasound permits defect height measurement, enabling volumetric consideration of flaw severity.
  • High chances of detection (POD), especially for cracks and lack of fusion:
    • In most studies, Ultrasound tends to detect planar flaws better than radiography.
  • Does not cause hazard, does not emit radiation, and does not require additional licensing or personnel.
  • Does not generate any waste material or chemical (as opposed to film-based radiography).
  • Work in proximity to ultrasonic testing can continue uninterrupted. Does not require screened-off areas.
  • Setup and inspection reports are in electronic format (as opposed to film format in radiography).
  • Real-time ultrasonic analysis of welds can provide instant assessment and feedback to a welder.


Here are the Requirements for Typical Ultrasonic Equipment and Inspection

  • A scan plan with a procedure documenting the inspection strategy and necessary parameters. Example: Parameters that are set up with the use of NDT SetupBuilder software.
  • An acquisition unit with position-encoding ability and full, raw A-scan data retention.

Example: An OmniScan flaw detector or FOCUS PX instrument.

  • An industrial scanner (with position encoder) to repeatedly scan a weld or component semi-automatically or automatically:
    • The choice of scanner model is based on the number of pipe diameter, welds, and other application variables.
  • Deliverable data:
    • The analysis is directly executed on the acquisition unit or by the use of post-analysis with TomoView, FocusPC PC software or OmniPC.
  • Alternative acceptance criteria, as required.
  • Probes, wedges, couplant delivery equipment, and other accessories.
  • Proper training and certification of personnel.
  • Demonstrated performance of equipment, procedure, operator, and inspection process.


Replacing radiography with ultrasound has become a code-approved practice as well as an industry trend. The phased array equipment is convenient to use, economical, compact and associated software are accelerating the use of ultrasound. The prime reasons for this continuing trend includes improved safety of operators and others in surrounding areas, savings in process cost and time and the use of alternative acceptance criteria. The expanded use of ultrasound has led to a decrease in part rejection and repairs.

About IRC Engineering Pvt. Ltd.

IRC is one of the fastest growing Testing and Inspection company in India. We at IRC provide Non-Destructive Testing, Destructive Testing, Advanced NDT, Third Party Inspection, Condenser Testing, Electrical Testing, Residual Life Assessment of Power Plant, O&M Services, Fitness For Service, Civil Testing and Training services.

read more
Ishita KapoorWhy use Ultrasonic Phased Array instead of Radiography?