TVA Supports Degree Program at Chattanooga State CHATANOOGA, TN (TheChattanoogan. Com)—The Tennessee Valley Authority, in cooperation with Chattanooga State Community College and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, has developed an associate degree program in nondestructive testing that will graduate students and provide them the opportunity for national certification making them ready to perform inspections and testing for multiple industries including TVA’s nuclear power plants. “The American Society of Mechanical Engineers has safety and inspection codes that must be followed telling us what materials to use when building specific equipment, how to perform the welding necessary and then how to inspect this equipment to keep it in good working order,” said Mike Turnbow, general manager of TVA’s Inspection and Testing Services. “What TVA needed were those skilled people to perform the inspections and certify that our equipment was working as intended,” added Turnbow. Turnbow, other TVA volunteers and local inspection service providers helped write the new course at the same time they taught the first students at the Chattanooga State campus after workinghours. “Our first two students graduated this year with their associate degree and TVA now has five interns learning the work they would do in our plants as they move toward graduation,” said Turnbow. “We are excited to help move this field forward by offering students the capabilities needed at the same time they get a chance for high paying jobs.” TVA began working on this program with Chattanooga State three years ago when TVA committed to ASME assistance in helping them build a national examination and certification program. The program certifies that these and other graduates are capable of inspecting essential equipment in industries and power plants nationwide. For more information, visit www.tva. gov. SGS Acquires Acumax Ltd. GENEVA, SWITZERLAND— SGS is pleased to announce the acquisition of Acumax Ltd (Gauteng, South Africa). Acumax specializes in nondestructive testing (NDT), rope access services and ultrasonic inspections. Acumax serves the industrial, oil and gas and offshore industry in South Africa and the coast of Africa. Founded in 2008 and privately owned, Acumax employs 12 staff and revenues for the prior year were in excess of ZAR 8. 1 million, or roughly $1.1 million. “SGS is excited by the prospect of building on the foundations of the Acumax business and investing and expanding our Industrial Services portfolio in the Southern African region”, says Chris Kirk, CEO of SGS. The SGS Group is a global inspection, verification, testing and certification company. Founded in 1878, SGS has than 67,000 employees. For more information, visit www.Sgs.com. West Penn Accelerates Test- Process Development in Wake of FAA Approval of Phased Array Ultrasonic Testing NEW KENSINGTON, PA--West Penn Testing Group, a provider of nondestructive testing and material testing services, reports completion of FAA approvals for phased array ultrasonic testing (PAUT). According to Albert Fletcher, director of sales of West Penn Testing, “The titanium- billet-phased-array group, made up of jet-engine OEMs, titanium-billet manufacturers and aerospace forgers, has passed a crucial milestone with the approval last month of PAUT. After a three-year effort, the aerospace industry now has an alternative to multi-zone ultrasonic testing.” Fletcher says that as a result of the FAA approval, West Penn has sped up its program to develop test protocols that meet the requirements of individual OEM customers. “We have the trained people in place and the schedule to install the additional equipment well underway. Now, as we begin to receive the detailed testing requirements from various jet-engine OEMs, we can adapt our process to satisfy the demands of specific customers.” West Penn reports that a number of tasks must be completed before high volumes of titanium billets can be run through the PAUT process. These tasks include certification of the process for each jet-engine OEM and its suppliers, further equipment-manufacturer evaluations and selection, and final approvals for testing procedures related to data capture, manipulation, analysis and reporting. “It is possible these issues can be resolved during the first half of 2012,” says Fletcher. “In any event, by that time West Penn will be in a position to conduct a high rate of titanium billet inspections.” For more information, visit www.westpenntesting. com NDT Market to See Continued Growth SAN ANTONIO, TX—Nondestructive test (NDT) inspection service has been one of the few markets that performed impressively during the global economic downturn, according to market research firm Frost & Sullivan. It witnessed modest growth in 2009 and rebounded with an unexpectedly improved performance in 2010. North America is the main contributor to revenues, due to high government safety regulations stipulating that inspection be carried out regularly, even during the downturn. Europe is the second largest contributor to revenues in this market. The development of wind farms across Western Europe, particularly in countries such as Spain and Germany, is creating demand for NDT inspection services. However, the growth of NDT inspection services in this region is expected to be slower when compared with other regions. Frost & Sullivan says the worldwide NDT market earned revenues of $3.05 billion in 2010 and estimates this to reach $5.59 billion in 2017. Even though industries were hit severely during the economic downturn, the global NDT inspection services market revenues registered a growth of 4. 7% in 2009. However, with the U.S. economy still recovering from the effects of financial downturn and the European economy being troubled by a sovereign debt crisis, the primary regions being outlined for growth in the global market are Asia Pacific and Latin America. “The rapid rate of infrastructure development in emerging economies such as India, China, and Brazil is driving the demand for NDT inspection,” notes Frost & Sullivan Research Associate Nikhil Jain. “In Japan, the accident at Fukushima nuclear reactor is expected to trigger widespread increase in safety regulations for nuclear power plants, besides driving short-term precautionary inspection in existing nuclear plants worldwide.” Meanwhile, in Latin America, Brazil has been the vanguard of the market recovery. The Brazilian economy is the largest in Latin America, with oil and gas, power generation, aerospace and automotive sectors being the main revenue generators. In this region, the majority of the revenues came from oil and gas end use segment, which perform compliance-based maintenance inspection. The power generation segment, especially wind energy and nuclear power, also provides expansion opportunities to NDT inspection service providers. The awareness of the need for NDT inspection in these regions is low; however, industries are beginning to understand the importance of protecting their assets against catastrophic failures. “Although most established participants provide high-quality inspection, less established and relatively smaller participants occasionally compromise on safety and quality,” says Nikhil. “This is especially witnessed in Asia Pacific, where the end-users are highly price conscious.” Price is a major hurdle for many NDT inspection service providers in Asia Pacific. The lack of government safety regulations has affected the effective implementation of NDT inspection in this region. End users are unconcerned about the reputation and quality of the inspection service provider, but they demand the most competitive price-performance ratio. With the number of pipeline explosions and infrastructure failures being witnessed around the world, authorities have intensified the scrutiny of inspection performed. Also, many industries that are reluctant to incur the exorbitant installation costs of new infrastructure are trying to extend the useful life of their existing assets. This has led to relative aging of these assets and periodic inspection is essential to guard against catastrophic failure. To tap this ever increasing demand for NDT inspection, the service providers need to increase their market presence and technicians employed. However, this offers a considerable challenge as there is a clear lack of qualified and skilled technicians in this industry. To overcome this challenge, NDT equipment manufacturers have dedicated their resources to simplify the operational complexity of the instrument used for inspection and increasing the speed of inspection. As a result, technicians have additional time to perform a thorough analysis of the data collected. For more information, contact Sarah Saatzer at email@example.com or (210) 477-8427, or visit www.frost. com. NDT Specialists Plans to Build Wisconsin Facility OAK CREEK, WI (OakCreekPatch.Com) —NDT Specialists Inc. is planning to consolidate its operations and build a $1.5 million facility in Oak Creek, WI. The company performs inspection services on various parts for a wide range of industries and manufacturers (Caterpillar, for example). NDT, short for Non-Destructive Testing, has been in business since 1988 and has locations in West Allis and Milwaukee. Those would be combined under one roof at 7365 S. Howell Ave. Owner Larry Schneider, an Oak Creek resident, said the family-owned NDT employs 26 people with an average wage of $20 per hour. The company has grown steadily over the past 20-plus years and expects to continue to expand in Oak Creek, Schneider said.
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