October 11, 2017
It's important that the following fact is understood. Pressure equipment serviceability is influenced by dynamic forces, by stored energies and dynamic state changing events. Granted, other engineering structures are subjected to damaging forces, but so are pressure vessels. Indeed, pressure equipment is designed to withstand these external energies, plus the internal energies that test their weld seams and flexing metal panels. Consequently, onsite checks exist to monitor dynamic events.
Even if a pressure vessel absolutely complies with its design specifications and every conceivable inspection code, those recorded and logged test results are based on artificial data. In other words, the manufactured pressure equipment is still on the factory floor. It is strain tested according to some regulatory codes so that the working parts are gauged as ready for installation, but this is still an artificially controlled environment. Onsite conditions, well, they're harder to control. There's an unpredictability factor in play. Onsite maintenance checks are designed to catch these events while they're taking place. Installation and operational errors can't escape this systematic inspection program, nor can environmental episodes elude the checks. A lightning strike, for example, is recorded and the damage addressed when the checks are properly carried out.
Onsite structural inspections evaluate common engineering assets. Ladders and support stanchions are assessed as mechanically viable constructs. Meanwhile, a third-party check that targets proprietary pressure equipment is a plausible action, but there are countless system-specific parts here. They're manufactured according to some rather specialized design parameters. Unless that third-party engineering agency has the necessary credentials, perhaps a certification of some sort, then the onsite construction and maintenance checks on the pressure equipment should only ever carried out by the original design team. Viewed as a service beneficial feature, that expertise asserts a specialized skill set, a degree of competence-based proficiency that attends to every proprietary system and component.
In simple terms, that latter benefit translates to specific pressure equipment training. Transported to the onsite equipment, the design team can inspect and test the core components, plus the valves and joints that couple the gear to the system framework. Certified third-party work teams attend to this duty if a training program has been established. Otherwise, the onsite construction and maintenance checks for pressure equipment exist to address that unpredictability factor mentioned earlier. The field inspections detect and address dynamic changes, as set in motion by active pressure systems, then the solution is executed in a timely manner before the site fault develops into a dangerous hazard.
Fusion - Weld Engineering Pty Ltd
ABN 98 068 987619
1865 Frankston Flinders Road,
Hastings, VIC 3915
Ph: (03) 5909 8218
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