Instrument software within NDT

Hedman, Erik; Sandvik Materials Technology; Sweden

Hedman, E.; Sandvik Materials Technology; Sweden

ID: ECNDT-0210-2018
Download: PDF
Session: Qualification, certification, standards 3
Room: J1
Date: 2018-06-15
Time: 10:00 - 10:20

Most non-destructive testing (NDT) in the world is performed manually using portable or hand-held instruments. At Sandvik Materials Technology (SMT) we mainly use automated inspection lines to perform our NDT.

Regardless whether the inspection is manual or automated, instruments today require software to operate. The main data acquisition software is often delivered by the instrument manufacturer together with the instrument. For automated inspection lines, the software is more extensive and may involve decision-making and interfaces to other equipment
The software works as intended most of the time, but sometimes it will fault. These faults include incorrect sorting, missing or deleted measurement results, incorrectly labeled results or incorrect parameters loaded for inspection.

To reduce the impact of these software faults, we have at SMT NDT implemented software testing as a general practice when introducing new software and when updating existing software. We prepare test cases designed to find as many faults as possible using our experience as developers and our experience from previous faults.

These tests are performed in a production like environment and when a software passes our test, it can be used for production. We also continuously monitor and record all faults found during production to allow us to either request a fix from the manufacturer or to find a workaround to avoid the problem.

These software faults can cause severe consequences, financially, environmentally and for our own safety. The question remains, who is responsible for this type of faults?