When aspects of design, construction and operation fall outside the embedded knowledge of recognized design and construction codes or specifications, an alternative approach is required. Element provides Engineering Critical Assessment (ECA) based on fracture mechanics to allow engineers to demonstrate the safety of a structure or a component and reduce the probability of failure in engineering structures.
Element has been actively involved in applying ECA techniques to a wide range of welded structures at all stages of a structure life cycle from design through construction and operation and contributed to the ongoing development of methods for conducting Engineering Critical Assessments (ECA) throughout our global laboratories.
Our fully integrated and advanced ECA consultancy, testing, and analysis services assess the defect tolerance for plastic collapse, fracture and fatigue damages of safety critical items in all welded structures and components which are exposed to various challenging environmental and operating conditions. This will reduce costs and time spent on unnecessary repairs and help prevent failures.
ECA applicable scenarios
Element’s fully integrated and advanced ECA consultancy, testing and analysis services can be used in the following scenarios:
- Determination of flaw acceptance criteria for welded structures to demonstrate the critical dimensions of a fabrication flaw with which the structure can be safely operated.
- Evaluation of structural inspection results and assessment of the severity of the detected flaws
- Evaluation of a certain inspection technique and assessment of the technique’s suitability for detecting and sizing the flaw which can jeopardize the integrity of a structure
- Assessing the necessity of applying a PWHT on a welded section
- Assisting failure analysis investigation and evaluation of the plausibility of a failure scenario
Our ECA services
- Consultancy on testing requirements and analysis regimes
- ECA analyses to a variety of internationally recognized codes and standards including BS 7910, DNV-OS-F101, DNVGL-RP-F108 and API 1104.
- Dynamic and quasi-static fracture mechanics testing and analysis in ambient and simulated environmental conditions e.g. Hydrogen loaded, corrosive media or cryogenic temperatures, to a vast majority of internationally recognized codes and standards
- Mechanical treatment of materials in small scale and full-scale dimensions i.e. straining and aging treatments, full-scale simulated pipe reeling.
- Fatigue crack growth rate measurement and analysis
- Mechanical testing at elevated and cryogenic temperature
Fully integrated services for ECA
Element’s multidisciplinary approach and expertise in materials engineering, fracture and fatigue analysis, stress analysis, and NDT inspection successfully deliver an Engineering Critical Assessment to a variety of internationally recognized codes and standards. We combine our advanced materials testing facilities in the US, UK, Europe, and South East Asia with our fully integrated ECA services to help you define the most cost-effective inspection and repair plan for all your projects during design, installation and operation.
Pipeline installation and operations conditions
Element has a proven track record and experience assessing pipeline construction under a variety of installation methods and operational conditions that are routinely encountered within pipe-laying activities.
The Element advantage
Though our in-depth data and analysis within an integrated service, we ensure more reliable modeling of installation and service conditions, enabling you to make informed and confident decisions on the most appropriate remedial measures to take. Element’s Engaged Experts can tailor our material testing, bespoke acquisition, and analysis routines to provide you with the highest quality data in the Oil & Gas industry.
Innovation in ECA testing and analysis methods is constant and remains an ongoing strategic priority for Element. An integrated, internationally standardized service from our facilities with equal expertise in both the testing and assessment areas of ECAs provides benefits for data and analysis accuracy, speed of delivery and cost while giving increased confidence in the overall integrity of engineering structures within Oil & Gas industry.
For more information about our ECA services, or to request a quote, contact us today.
BS 7910 / Crackwise software
BS 7910 is a widely used industry standard to facilitate the performance of ECA analyses. Element is represented on the materials properties panel of BS 7910 and is actively involved in the continuous development of this standard. BS 7910 contains a comprehensive philosophy for carrying out ECA analyses for materials subjected to fracture, plastic collapse and cyclic fatigue growth. All the validated formulae used for these assessments are incorporated within the generic software package Crackwise where this software is a recognized industry standard. It is prudent to note that although validated, this software is generic and therefore does not produce an integrated method to carry out a full ECA.Element provides an integrated service to perform the testing and analysis in accordance with the various ECA methods outlined in BS 7910.
DNV-OS-F101 is a widely used industry standard detailing the ECA approaches and testing regimes required to perform ECA analyses for submarine pipeline systems subjected to several commonly used installation and operational conditions. Element provides an integrated service to perform the testing and analysis in accordance with the various ECA philosophies outlined within DNV-OS-0F101 Appendix A.
DNVGL-RP-F108 is a widely used industry standard detailing the ECA approaches and testing regimes required to perform ECA analyses for assessment of flaws in submarine pipeline and riser girth welds subjected to a number of commonly used installation and operational conditions. Element provides an integrated service to perform the testing and analysis in accordance with the various ECA philosophies outlined within DNVGL-RP-F108.
API 1104 Annex A option 1 and 2 analyses
Element can identify and perform the associated testing to enable API 1104 Annex A option 1 and 2 ECA analyses to be performed. These approaches are commonly used for land line installations subjected to limited fatigue damage. Element also contributes to the ongoing development of the globally recognized international standards through the involvement of our Engaged Experts in several industry-leading steering groups and committees.
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