The Xiris Blog

Tube Düsseldorf Recap

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, April 22, 2014 @ 09:34 AM

As the organizers of Wire & Tube Düsseldorf promised, the show held at the Düsseldorf Exhibition Centre was a terrific success.  Running from April 7 until April 11, 2014, some 72,000 visitors from 104 different countries roomed the exhibition halls, excited to learn about the latest technology being offered to the International Tube market.

With over 50,000 square meters of exhibition space occupied, a 3.1% increase over 2012, those exhibitors participating in the tube side of the show rated their experience with top marks.  Technology presented ranged from raw materials & accessories, machinery for production, and measurement and control equipment. 

Xiris Automation Inc. participated with Magnetic Analysis Corporation (MAC) exhibiting our WI2000p, Tube & Pipe Weld Inspection technology & our XVC-O Weld Camera, a weld monitoring system, along with MAC’s Non-destructive testing equipment.

Apr 22.14 Blog Tube Dusseldorf

Observations from the show:

Xiris representatives had numerous discussions with companies interested in weld inspection and monitoring technology. Opportunities were reviewed with both existing customers while several new possibilities were discussed with potential customers.

A number of manufacturers of very small diameter tubes visited the booth interested in exploring ways to inspect tube as small as 2mm in diameter.  Interestingly, most of these manufacturers weld their tubes using a longitudinal laser welding process with very tight manufacturing tolerances.

With a number of new projects worldwide in offshore oil and gas, the resurgent interest in offshore pipeline was very clear.  New requirements for inspecting spiral welded and orthogonal butt welded pipe are raising the need for additional quality measurements.  In particular, the need to double weld many critical weld joints requires special inspection systems to detect defects after each weld process.

The majority of the attendees stopping by the booth were decision makers looking for ways to improve their productivity and production efficiencies.

The next Tube Düsseldorf will take place April 4 to 8th, 2016.  Further information can be found at www.Tube.de.

See you in 2016!

Topics: welding automation, Trade Show, Tube and Pipe welding, undercut, Tube Dusseldorf

Monitoring Tube and Pipe Production to Find UNDERCUT Defects

Posted by Cornelius Sawatzky on Tuesday, March 18, 2014 @ 12:10 PM

Recent advancements in machine vision technology have made a new type of inspection able to see defects related to the forming and welding area of a tube or pipe.  The result is improved quality assurance and process control on the production line.  The new type of inspection device is a laser-based triangulation system that measures the outside contour of a tube or pipe in the vicinity of its weld. 

Typically NDT systems are placed at the end of a production as a final check.  However, the laser inspection system can be placed directly after the weld box, This system can let operators know what is changing in their welding process, allowing them to perform corrective action before significant scrap occurs. This capacity is especially helpful for one of the most common defects found mainly in Laser and Plasma welded Tube manufacturing: Weld Bead Undercut. 

 

The Undercut Defect

The undercut defect is primarily a result of laser or plasma welding processes.  It may form if the laser beam or plasma arc is too far off center of the ideal welding zone of the tube material.  Undercut is actually a non-melted, non-welded area of the bead that can occur on one or both sides of the bead.  It looks and behaves like a crack along the bead, creating a very weak point on the tube cross-section.  Undercuts are detected as sharp, narrow negative drops in the actual profile (where at least one side of the undercut must have a high deflection derivative, or near vertical slope) that happen close to the edges of the bead.  The absolute value of the biggest negative drop found is reported as the height of the undercut.

Mar 18.14 Blog Undercut

The Undercut Defect, where “h” = the height of the defect.


How the WI2000p System Measures the Undercut Defect

Xiris Automation Inc. has developed a non-destructive inspection system called the WI2000p Weld Inspection System. The WI2000p  includes  a laser line and a camera whose optical axis is offset to the axis of the laser line by an “offset angle”.  The WI2000p creates a visible cross-section of the tube by projecting the laser line on to the tube and capturing an image of the line using the camera. The resulting image shows a  profile of the tube surface as if it were cut in cross section.  If a tube is ideally round, the laser image will represent a section of an ellipse and any anomaly such as a Undercut can be mathematically detected. 

The WI2000p bases all of its measurements on the differences between the actual laser profile line seen by the camera, and the ideal mathematical profile based on the tube parameters.  By knowing the position of the actual laser profile, the ideal profile, and the size of the pixels in the image, the WI2000p can detect Undercut profile defects that often escape detection by other quality tools such as Eddy Current testing, or Ultrasonic Testing techniques

 

Conclusion

A new technique for detecting Undercut on laser or plasma welded Tube and Pipe has been developed by Xiris and is known as the WI2000p weld inspection system.  The WI2000p system is a laser based inspection system that is capable of detecting Undercut defects immediately after welding to alert the operator of a defect in time to minimize rejects.  The result is improved quality, fewer field defects and a more reliable method for the operator to optimize the welding process.

Topics: quality control, weld camera, weld inspection, Laser welding, image processing, High Dynamic Range, Tube and Pipe welding, laser-based monitoring, Pipe Cladding, welding defect, undercut

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