The Benefits of Digital Weld Management during Fabrication and Construction

Integrated Quality Control and Tracking Plus Welder Database Management

Intergraph Smart Weld Quality Management System (WQMS) is a comprehensive application that integrates digitally with engineering, fabrication, and construction processes for welding quality control and material traceability. It includes quality monitoring of welds and non-destructive testing (NDT) inspections for both piping and structural fabrication activities, including standard reporting capabilities, documentation and automated handover (final documentation) through its inherent EDMS features.

Conformance to Industry Requirements and Practices

To claim completion for a fabrication or construction task, according to industry practices, quality acceptance is a mandatory step.

Quality Control (QC) functions are a fundamental part of Smart WQMS. All required QC-related items are addressed, including welders, welds, repairs and re-weld details, as well as fit-up, visual, NDT and Post Weld Heat Treatment (PWHT) records. All the data will be composed and incorporated so that the owner or main contractor can have precise data at all stages of the project.

As part of Hexagon’s integrated digital approach to engineering, procurement, fabrication, and construction, Smart WQMS works with piping and structural data from most 3D design systems, covering all operational components in the fabrication process. Complying with Industry Standards, it supports both minor projects as well as the complex, mega-sized project requirements.

Integrated Quality Control and Tracking

Smart WQMS enables the automated production of quality documentation for the testing and certification of structural parts and pipe spool fabrication and erection at the construction site. By integrating the production of documentation with corresponding engineering drawings and data, you can take advantage of a single common platform to:

Welding control sample from a pipe of small diameter for proficiency testing by the method of argon-arc welding

  • Streamline fabrication workflows
  • Eliminate manual entry
  • Perform change management more efficiently

The pre-defined inspection sequences and workflow-driven functionality offered by Smart WQMS ensure that all steps of quality checks and verifications are recorded. Comprehensive weld-map data provides complete traceability for welds.

This data can be created automatically from the integration of engineering systems, without the need for manual input. Smart WQMS covers the entire cycle of inspection activities, including Notice of Inspection (NOI).

Full status and progress information and material traceability are maintained for both piping and structural materials by detailing the location and status within the fabrication process. This enables the system to record and present the progress of welding and NDT inspection at any point in time. It also ensures that full material reconciliation can be performed as soon as the project is completed.

This information is important for the overview of acceptance of onsite work and further supports the claiming and invoicing process.

Welder Database Management

Generally, it is important in all projects to have complete traceability of welds:

  • Who is the welder?
  • What qualifications does the welder hold?
  • What is the welder’s experience and track record?

Consequently, Smart WQMS includes welder maintenance records to keep qualifications up-to-date and maintain full welder histories. It contains a welder database which manages welder registrations, qualifications, tested processes, certificates, and passes. Data can be searched by welder, process, joint type, material, etc.

You can easily analyse welder performance by accessing weld historical records which contain welder identification. This helps to reduce overhead and enhance efficiency in managing welder quality.

Built-in Industry Expertise

Smart WQMS was developed by a group of industry experts, following a set of common oil and gas industry practices and requirements. The solution enables full traceability from design to acceptance and delivers all the major benefits associated with a comprehensive and proven system, including:

  • Engineering information – Weld number, weld size, material, joint configuration, etc.
  • Production information – Welding procedure specification (WPS), welder ID, date welded, date repaired, etc.
  • Quality control information – Inspection results, NDT reports, and PWHT data.

Such information helps the fabricator to monitor, measure, and control critical processes during fabrication.

Click here to learn more about Smart WQMS.

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David Whittle is a Business Development Manager at Hexagon PPM. He lives in Cheshire, United Kingdom.

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