Skip to Menu Skip to Search Contact Us Global Websites & Languages Skip to Content


In 2013, SGS technicians traveled to Minnesota to help remove a large sediment blockage that was disrupting a pipeline company’s operations. With ultrasonic inspection technology, they were able to locate the blockage and provide the company with a successful strategy for removing it. The story was covered in the November 2014 issue of World Pipelines magazine.

Ultrasonic Inspection Technology Solves the Problem

Sediment blockages in pipelines can disrupt cleaning operations. In 2013, a pipeline company discovered that a section of pipeline in Minnesota had been blocked by excessive sediment buildup. Enough sludge had gathered to completely block the progress of the pigging tool.

The company considered using X-ray technology to remove the blockage, but realized that this would not provide all the information it needed and would not allow timeline goals to be met. After considering other available technologies, it decided to use SGS PfiNDE’s ultrasonic inspection technology to solve the problem.

SGS inspection technicians traveled to a rural area of Minnesota, where they were able to use ultrasonic inspection technology to determine the volume of the sediment and its exact location. Based on an analysis of the results, the pipeline company developed a strategy for effectively and efficiently removing the specific section of the impacted pipeline. After the section was removed, it was replaced and normal operations were resumed.

To find out more about how SGS PfiNDE was able to help the pipeline company remove the blockage quickly and efficiently, download the article for Ultrasonic Inspection Technology.

An Effective Solution with Multiple Applications

Typically, pipeline companies only consider ultrasonic inspection technology for high-end weld investigations and when looking for cracks and dents. However, this technology can also be used to provide other information that would be more time-consuming and expensive to obtain with radiographic inspection. For example, ultrasonic inspection technology is useful for checking fluid levels and checking for the presence of sludge.

SGS offers ultrasonic inspection technology as part of its pipeline integrity services. Contact us to learn how you can use these services to help your business run more efficiently.

SGS PfiNDE Pipeline Integrity Services

SGS PfiNDE Pipeline Integrity Services support pipeline operators’ in-line inspection programs by providing in-trench evaluation of pipeline anomalies. SGS PfiNDE provides accurate identification of anomalies using Non-Destructive Examination (NDE). Unlike other NDE providers that also do pipeline work, SGS PfiNDE is a pipeline inspection company that provides high quality NDE, with technicians trained in pipeline specific techniques and field conditions.

For further information, please contact:

Stephen Cox
Key Account Manager, Northern Region US
SGS PfiNDE, Inc.
7760 France Ave. South Suite 1149
Edina, Minnesota 55437
m: +918-894-1619
www.sgs.com/industrial

About SGS

SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 80,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,650 offices and laboratories around the world.