Identification of the root cause of failure is an essential action for the user in order to allow them to further improve the reliability of plant equipment and ensure the costly failure does not occur again. Eliminating future recurrence of a failure represents a far bigger cost reduction for an operation than the cost of a competent failure analysis. The consequences of failure may include safety incidents, lost production, extensive consequential damage, or business/department reputation.
Failure analysis is the combined term for a collection of processes ranging from metallurgical analysis of components, to the sequencing of events that lead to a degraded performance or catastrophic failure. Noble Engineering Services is a leader in this discipline due to our ability to combine the outcomes of these processes, with an understanding of the function of the design, site processes, and inhouse practical maintenance experience.
Since there are an infinite number of variables in play at any one time it is important to have a set process in any failure analysis to consider all potentially contributing factors. Our industry experience and familiarity with a broad range of equipment helps us obtain the required detailed information on how the component was produced, how it has been operated, and how it has been affected by its environment and its loading.
With Noble Engineering Services’ expertise, we can quickly and efficiently focus the failure analysis process. After an initial preliminary assessment Noble Engineering Services apply a systematic failure analysis sequence to establish the root cause of the failure, proving or dis-proving key elements along the way.
This process may include destructive and non-destructive testing, assessment of fracture/s, identify failure mechanisms, and why the usual preventive measures may not have been effective. The findings may bring evidence of non-compliant manufacture, improper component selection, overloading or misuse, ineffective maintenance, and opportunities or methods for early identification.
Once the root cause is identified, recommendations for changes can be made. This might include changes to material type, design, site procedures, or maintenance.
This activity is a key process for mature operations and requires a high level of experience and expertise. Noble Engineering Services has the required experience and expertise and provide added value at many levels.