For decades in the United States, NDT personnel certification has been in a state of chaos. Since 1968, the basic certification program SNT-TC-1A, a “recommended practice” has been adopted and followed by many organizations. Other programs followed such as MIL-STD 410, MIL-STD 271, and NAV SHIPS 250-1500 (all three have gone through name changes). Today there are many more certification programs and several more are being developed. Ideally, there should be one comprehensive national system, but that seems unrealistic at this time. Blatant abuses such as falsifications, improper documentation, and failure to follow established standards and procedures continue to plague the growing NDT industry. Over the years, there has been a tendency to ignore the original intent of SNT-TC-1A, the need to assure that NDT personnel are qualified which is a prerequisite to certification. There are many who believe that SNT-TC-1A is the best approach for the U.S. provided the original intent is achieved.
A Bit of History