Joint Industry Project to develop a new guideline using numerical simulation for AUT qualification and validation for pipeline inspection - saving costs and schedule


  • The launching partners Bureau Veritas and CEA now invite further participants to join the JIP

Bureau Veritas, a global leader in testing, inspection and certification services, and CEA, a leading public research organization, are launching a Joint Industry Project (JIP) to develop a new guideline for the qualification and validation of Automated Ultrasonic Testing (AUT) systems to inspect pipeline girth welds. 

Bureau Veritas Sievert staff performing AUT on girth weld pipeline

The current qualification and validation process relies on experimental tests to evaluate the performance of AUT systems in a three-step methodology: 

  1. 1) Test welds manufactured with seeded defects are subjected to 
  2.      AUT to identify defects 

  1. 2) Test welds are then subjected to destructive testing to confirm 
  2.      actual defect location and size 

  1. 3) Probability of Detection (PoD) of the AUT system are ultimately 
  2.      derived from steps (1) and (2)

This methodology has a significant impact on the costs and schedule of qualification and validation of AUT systems. In some cases the AUT qualification duration could exceed the actual pipeline project duration leading to a switch to radiographic testing, with consequential radioprotection and safety implications. 

The new industry guideline promoted by the JIP would replace experimental tests (1) and (2) by numerical simulation. This will reduce experimental testing costs and schedule without compromising reliability. The new guideline will rely on a Model-Assisted Probability of Detection (MAPoD). This proven numerical simulation approach has been developed by CEA-List, the CEA lab focusing on software-intensive technologies. 

Bureau Veritas and CEA now invite participants to the JIP, to deliver a sound methodology, supported by new guidelines and training as well user-friendly numerical tools for performing the qualification of AUT systems and the validation of project-specific procedures. 

Illustration of numerical model of pipeline and AUT system simulation through CIVA software

The new guideline would provide the following benefits: 

  • • Drastic reduction in duration of qualification/validation time with significant cost savings 
  • • Reduced number of seeded-defect welds required to be manufactured - with significant cost savings
  • • Greater confidence and reliability in the determination of PoD curves and sizing accuracy 
  • • Better knowledge and understanding of the essential parameters for numerical simulation and their relevance for both onshore and offshore applications 
  • • The availability of recommendations to adjust parameters for both automated and semi-automated AUT systems.

Paul Shrieve, Bureau Veritas Vice President Offshore and Services, Marine & Offshore division, said: “Bureau Veritas and CEA, are excited to be launching this new Joint Industry Project, which we believe will make a significant difference to the process of testing and validating AUT system performances. Managing the project together, we will each bring our own expertise and specialised skills to the JIP” 

The JIP hopes to attract national and international oil and gas companies, as well as Engineering, Procurement, Construction and Installation (EPCI) contractors. It will also be aimed at AUT service suppliers, systems manufacturers, and simulation software providers. JIP members with case studies / project applications are welcomed. 

TechnipFMC have agreed to join the JIP: Laurent Pomié, TechnipFMC says: “TechnipFMC has already started R&D activities on the topic and sees the JIP as a unique opportunity to spread-out and accelerate adoption of numerical simulation by the industry”.

The Joint Industry Project is expected to start in 2019 and will last for 18-24 months. Detailed JIP proposals will be disclosed and first meetings organized by the end 2018. 

About Bureau Veritas

Created in 1828, Bureau Veritas is a global leader in testing, inspection and certification (TIC), delivering high-quality services to help clients meet the growing challenges of quality, safety, environmental protection and social responsibility. 
As a trusted partner, Bureau Veritas offers innovative solutions that go beyond simple compliance with regulations and standards, reducing risk, improving performance and promotion sustainable development. Bureau Veritas is recognised and accredited by major national and international organisations and works across a wide range of industries worldwide. The UK business is headquartered in Birmingham, has 1,200 employees and is based in office locations stretching the length and breadth of the UK. 
Bureau Veritas is listed on Euronext Paris and belongs to the Next 20 index. Compartment A, ISIN code FR 0006174348, stock symbol: BVI.

Marine client portal   

About CEA

The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) is a public research organisation working in four main areas: defence and security, low carbon energies (nuclear and renewables), technological research for industry and fundamental research. Building on its recognised expertise, the CEA takes part in implementing cooperation projects with a wide range of academic and industrial partners. With its 16,000 researchers and employees, it is a major player in European research and is expanding its international presence. In 2017, ThomsonReuters / Clarivate identified the CEA as the most innovative public research organization in Europe. 

The CEA-List, one of CEA Tech three technological research institutes constituting the CEA technological Division, focuses its researches on smart digital systems. With major economic and societal challenges, its R&D programs focus on artificial intelligence, advanced manufacturing, innovative instrumentation, cyberphysical systems and digital health. By developing state-of-the-art technologies, the CEA-List contributes to the industrial competitiveness of its partners through innovation and technology transfer. The quality of its partnership research has been rewarded with the “Carnot Institute” label since 2006 (Institut Carnot TN@UPSaclay). 

To learn more: |


Nicholas Brown
Communications Director
Bureau Veritas

+ 33 (0) 6 04 91 72 41

Capucine Rios
Communications & Events Manager
Bureau Veritas
+33 (0) 6 30 47 09 81


Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore

Phone: +33 1 55 24 70 00

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