Article Article
Process for Nondestructive Testing of Pressure Vessels Using Electronic Distance Measurements to Measure 3-D Coordinates of Cardinal Points While Pressure and/or Force Testing

This is a companion paper to Opportunities for the use of electronic distance measurement instruments in nondestructive testing and structural health monitoring and implications for ASNT, which was presented at the 2018 ASNT Research Symposium. The earlier paper covered the background and capabilities of electronic distance measurement instruments, and in general how they could be used for nondestructive testing applications, which will not be repeated. This paper covers specific applications limited to pressure vessels, such as; boilers, receivers, nuclear reactor containment buildings, tank trucks, railway tank cars, storage tanks, ships, vacuum chambers, aircraft, spacecraft, and the like. An example experimental architecture and 3-D uncertainty analysis, using manufacturers instrument specifications and commercially available software (MicroSurvey® STAR*NET), is included for nondestructive testing of railway tank cars subjected to measured pressure and coupler forces. Structurally sound tank cars can be quickly, and quantifiably, identified by comparing the measured geometric performance of targeted cardinal points, under the pressures and forces, to finite element models (FEM), historical measurements of the car, or looking for salient characteristics such as; linearity, hysteresis, creep, symmetry, and the like while defective tank cars will exhibit anomalous geometric performance, which requires further investigation. The net result would be that instead of releasing a tank car into service based on not finding a defect, it would be released into service based on measured structural performance.

DOI: 10.32548/RS.2019.014

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