General. Inspections are generally performed in accordance with API RP 575, which applies to all atmospheric and low pressure tanks. This methodology includes tanks covered by STI-SP 001, API 653, and attached metal piping. The tester has been licensed and performing API 653 and RP 575 inspections since 2002.
The most valued inspection tool will always be an experienced eye. Most flaws are not hidden, they are right there on the surface, though patience and experience are key.
Such a simple tool can be surprisingly useful on roofs and floors where the opposite side is not accessible, and on composite tanks where delamination and chemical attack can be internal.
Ultrasonic Thickness Testing (UT).
A work horse of the industry, ultrasound allows the inspector to:
- Measure thickness.
- Locate corroded areas when both sides are not accessible.
- Confirm thickness of materials.
- Determine roughness (a sign of corrosion) on inaccessible surfaces.
- Cracks in welds or plates.
Confirmation of UT results and measurement of small corroded areas.
Most useful for confirming cracks located by other means.
Evaluation and Program Management
As a 32-year chemical engineer, I can perform API engineering analysis of many common tank conditions and modifications. Experience will guide us to the most practical and economical solution.
Testing results for an entire facility are summarized in a multi-tab worksheet, recording all inspections and evaluations in one document. Past and future inspection dates are summarized on a single page, allowing both managers and regulators a simple overview of compliance and scheduling at a glance. I have proven this system for facilities as small a 2 tanks and corporations with 450 tanks in 16 states.
I prefer to stay below 100,000 gallons. That let's me stay small and efficient. But with over 2000 inspections under my belt, some as large as 10,000,000 gallons, I'm comfortable with any project. If additional help is needed to insure timeliness or meet special requirements, I can coordinate with contract help.