NYSEARCH Project on NDE of PE Joints Results in Multiple Demonstrations

In November, The Welding Institute (TWI), a U.K. contractor of NYSEARCH, participated with funders of the project entitled “Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) of Ultrasonic Inspection System” in three demonstrations using their PolyTest tool, a commercial PE joint inspection system in Europe.

Illustrated in Figure 1 is the TestPep Inspection system concept design. This system and the subsequent product, known as PolyTest, allow a more comprehensive volumetric inspection of butt fusion and electrofusion joints on PE pipe. TWI’s current commercial tool is applied on the outside surface of the pipe and requires a trained technician. It is highly accurate as shown in the blind testing recently performed by NYSEARCH project funders .
The three companies where the demonstrations took place were National Fuel Gas, Pacific Gas & Electric, and Public Service Electric & Gas. Several other NYSEARCH members participated and several prepared over (50) blind samples for testing. Various pictures from the demonstrations are shown below. The funders will receive a full report on the outcome of the demonstrations.

The anticipated NYSEARCH NDE tool will NOT require a trained technician for inspection of butt fusion PE joints. It will also perform volumetric inspection and due to the large amount of testing on various joints with imparted defects, it will incorporate algorithms that are designed to allow the NDE tool to automatically assess the joint and provide a pass/fail indicator (without technician interpretation).

For over thirty years, NYSEARCH has worked as a consortium of natural gas Local Distribution Companies (LDCs) who have a common interest and need for research and technology development and demonstration. Today, as part of the Northeast Gas Association (NGA), NYSEARCH manages over (30) projects in various stages of development for LDCs, transmission companies, federal agencies and their manufacturing and commercial partners. NYSEARCH is located in Parsippany, NJ and NGA is headquartered in Needham, Massachusetts.