Connected thickness gauges supported by cloud-based software are more advantageous than some existing systems. The files currently transferred to the IDMS program can be uploaded directly to the cloud application through the thickness gauge using wireless transfer mode. With wireless connectivity, users can create and manage projects from the office and assign tasks to staff members who are located around the world.
Field inspectors can connect the inspection instrument to a mobile hotspot or wireless local area network (WLAN) and download the files needed for the inspection directly to the device. The inspector can then very easily and quickly take all the necessary measurements and upload the data to the cloud, where data analysts at other locations can immediately view the results and thus make some decisions faster. Since the data is always saved in digital format, there is no need to manually write the results, which greatly reduces the chances of human error.
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With the cloud-based application, analysts can view the data immediately. If a problem is found with the quality of the data that requires repeat testing, the file can also be redeployed to the testing instrument and wait for retesting. In addition, cloud-based data can support exporting files in a variety of formats. Once the data has been checked and confirmed to be clean, it can be uploaded to an IDMS program for statistical analysis and used to assess the mechanical integrity of the asset, among other things.
All of the benefits described above can now be realized with wireless inspection devices and cloud-based programs as well as inspection management applications. But this is just the beginning of how the Internet of Things is changing the field of NDT.
Just a few of the projects currently under development in the NDT field include the development of new inspection tools and cloud-based inspection applications that can be used by inspectors to make NDT work easier.
These new cloud-based inspection applications will enable users to wirelessly transmit readings from inspection instruments to a monitoring system so that inspectors can clearly see the status monitoring location and can capture readings digitally. If an inspector sees some area of concern in the field, they can immediately take a photo with the equipment-equipped camera and collaborate with the supervisor in the office in real-time and remotely.
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In addition, all data collected in the field can be easily generated into a final report and sent for approval and signature. The data collected, whether it is a digital drawing consisting of equipment readings, notes from the inspector, or images captured by the equipment, can be converted into a traceable format and uploaded back to the IDMS program so that it can be easily and quickly searched and traced in the future.
The rapid emergence of IoT devices and cloud-based applications is gradually changing the way industrial NDT is performed and how data is managed, but this is just the beginning. As cloud-based applications become more prevalent in the NDT industry, the integrity of inspection data will be greatly improved, which will not only reduce the likelihood of duplicate inspections but will also shorten the time it takes to complete them. One of the keys to progress for manufacturers developing NDT equipment is to actively listen to industry feedback and to engage in good collaborative discussions with all stakeholders on how to leverage emerging technologies to move the industry forward.
Wuhan Zhongke Innovation Technology Co., Ltd., abbreviated as “ Zhongke Innovation”, is a scientific and technological enterprise and a nondestructive testing equipment manufacturer with independent intellectual property rights. Moreover, the company has several core product systems which leads the development direction of China's ultrasonic nondestructive testing technology including conventional testing equipment, high-end imaging testing equipment and all kinds of automatic detection equipment to form the whole industry chain layout from portable manual testing product to the full automatic detection system and from design, research, development, manufacturing to field installation, debugging and training. Contact us today or visit our website.
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