Failure Analysis, Expert Witness and Testing Services

We will work with you to investigate and understand your failure and will advise on the best and most economic way of finding the cause.

We have contacts with a number of leading test laboratories and are able to organise both standard and more complex test programs, including:

  • Mechanical testing such as tensile, hardness and impact
  • Analytical testing such as optical and electron metallography and chemical analysis.
  • Corrosion testing such as ASTM B117, G48, G8 and NACE TM0177

We have assisted in small scale as well as major metallurgical investigations and some of the work we have done includes:

Investigating cracking during heat treatment

A forging cracked during machining and an investigation was carried out to determine whether a defect had occurred during quenching or tempering. By using optical and electron metallography it was determined that the crack had formed during heat treatment and had not been detected by NDE.

Investigating a surface treatment failure

A major component in a steam by pass valve was found to have failed due to poor surface hardening, which in turn had caused galling during operation. Investigation showed that the nitrding treatment given to the component had not been effective and so the surface hardness was below that specified. By modifying the treatment a new surface processing route was developed in order to prevent further failures.

Third party witness

We have acted as a third party witness on a number of major offshore projects including the manufacture of a flexible riser system. We represented a Houston based certfied verification authority (CVA) who were working on behalf of the federal authorities. We reviewed the design and materials being used as well as witnessing the manufacturing of the riser. We then fully reviewed the completed fabrication manuals which allowed the CVA to sign off the riser for use in federal waters.

Litigation

We have provided expert witness evidence in a litigation case where a subsea component had failed due to poor material selection. Reviewing the service conditions and the materials used allowed use to advise our client on the material selection procedure that should have been followed and the possible failure mechanisms that could occur due to the use of incorrect materials.