A new ASTM International practice provides a standardized way for manufacturers and construction professionals to examine plastic pipe joints using sound waves.

The new standard (E3044/E3044M, Practice for Ultrasonic Testing of Polyethylene Butt Fusion Joints) provides a non-destructive way to identify flaws inside the pipe’s butt-fusion joints and to assess the joint’s overall quality.

The new standard sets minimum requirements for coverage and sensitivity of ultrasonic testing, helping identify problems such as lack of fusion, contamination by particulates, and more.

Due to advantages such as resistance to corrosion, polyethylene piping has been increasingly used as an alternative to steel alloys in the petrochemical, power, water, gas distribution, and mining industries.

ASTM member Jason Estabrook, quality and CPI operations lead, APAC, notes that the standard will be used by engineers, procurement professionals, and construction managers, as well as large scale fabricators that assemble butt fusion joints in the field. The standard may eventually have applications with nuclear components. 

E3044/E3044M was developed by the committee on nondestructive testing (E07).

For more information, visit www.astm.org.