What to Expect from Your NDE Inspection
As a utility asset owner and operator managing critical infrastructure, you know what’s at stake when your assets malfunction: costly repairs, service disruption and outages, and safety risks to the public as well as your own employees. Why take risks you can’t afford when you can invest in the long-term strength, reliability, and functionality of your assets instead?
What Happens During an NDE Inspection
NDE Inspections that Ensure Structural Integrity
Nondestructive examination (NDE; also known as NDT or nondestructive testing) is a powerful tool for utility industry professionals when it comes to identifying and assessing the myriad of structures issues that can plague electric transmission towers and aging infrastructure. The “nondestructive” nature of NDE means that no part of your pole or asset will be damaged during the inspection process, leaving the component intact to continue performing its intended purpose.
NDE is thorough and can test for a variety of structural damage using multiple techniques. Traditional inspections (visual inspection only) are still important. In fact, they’re a component of NDE. But if you’re working with a team who is simply driving by to see if steel poles or lattice towers are still standing, or only examining the exterior of the poles for any visible signs of damage, you could be missing hidden defects or other issues within a structure that could pose a significant risk to the asset and its surroundings.
NDE Means Higher Probability of Detection
The central benefit of NDE is that it offers a substantially higher probability of detection of structural damage. In addition to in-depth visual inspections (vt), certified NDT technicians can conduct ultrasonic testing (ut), magnetic testing (mt), and more. The goal: to ensure there are no hidden structural defects in your utility assets and systems.
Versatility is a hallmark of NDE, thanks to the range of inspections that can be conducted on a variety of diverse materials. Here are just a few regularly occurring problems that are diagnosed through NDE:
- Cracks in critical structural elements of a pole or tower
- Galvanizing issues
- Coatings degradation
- Manufacturing defects
- Structural weld defects
- Mechanical damage and deformation
NDE is also very effective at testing for the effects of corrosion, as well as identifying problems with the foundation of your utility assets. NDE works on steel, wood, fiberglass, concrete, and aluminum structures.
Partnership Leads to Success
You never have to speculate about current asset health if you partner with certified NDE technicians for regular nondestructive testing. All your components (including through veins, arms, base plates, flanges, and slip joints) will be checked regularly.
Nondestructive examination combines a hands-on approach to quality assurance with dynamic applications that protect your utility assets. And when you’re looking ahead, NDE findings can help to ensure that any planned asset and fixture upgrades will be supported by your current structures.
When planning NDE, you need an experienced partner with a high level of expertise at every stage of inspection. The quality of an NDT inspection is directly related to the experience of the technician. It is very easy for readings to be misinterpreted by an inspector if they are not properly trained and qualified in certain areas or applications. Unfortunately, this is a pretty common occurrence in our industry. Exo is trusted by leaders in every field of the utility industry. We use the latest NDE technology. Our field team credentials are unparalleled and allow us to conduct the full range of testing and inspections available, from visual to aerial inspections.
Don’t settle for testing that could leave risks unaddressed. Contact Exo today for a complimentary consultation and let us know how we can partner with you.