ID eddy-current (EC) inspection is a form of nondestructive testing (NDT) employed to help detect pitting, cracking and other concerns such as erosion and corrosion. Often employed for nonferrous alloy heat exchanger tubing used in power generation, chemical processing and other applications, eddy-current testing also is used by fabricators and end-users to establish baseline data before putting a unit into service — to determine if any damage occurred during the fabrication and installation process. In addition, when power and processing industry operations have access to reliable baseline data — as well as the reference standards used — EC testing provides a valuable tool for monitoring corrosion and scheduling preemptive maintenance.
As a practical means for tube inspection, Eddy-current testing (ECT) has been available in the United States since the 1950s. According to the Heat Exchanger Institute, ECT is the standard NDT inspection technique for tubing, and it is included in the ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code.