CUI and Touch Point Corrosion: What You Need to Know
Monday, September 20, 2021

CUI and Touch Point Corrosion: What You Need to Know

CUI and Touch-Point corrosion account for 60% of Refinery piping failures

Do you know the dangers of CUI and touchpoint corrosion? Each year, undetected corrosion leads to millions of dollars worth of damage and is directly tied to approximately 60% of pipe leaks in refineries. Simply put, if you’re not on the lookout for corrosion, it’s only a matter of time until you find yourself facing some significant problems. As one of the world leaders in NDT inspection, Russell NDE offers safe and reliable NDT resources for CUI and touch point corrosion, making it easy to stay on top of damage before disaster strikes. Learn some of the basics of dealing with CUI and touch point corrosion below!

What is CUI?

Corrosion Under Insulation, better known as CUI, refers to any type of corrosion that occurs as a result of the presence of moisture on the external surfaces of insulated equipment. It can occur on equipment that is in or out of service, as well as equipment in a cyclic service, and thanks to its placement under insulation, can be particularly difficult to locate by visual inspections alone.

What is Touch Point Corrosion?

Touch point corrosion is a type of corrosion that occurs in piping systems, most commonly where pipes are in contact with other metal and non-metallic support materials. Touch point corrosion is visible at the base of a pipe and requires routine inspections to avoid sudden leaks.

What environments are most susceptible to corrosion?

The truth of the matter is, wherever moisture goes corrosion will eventually follow, even with our best efforts. While this means that there’s no single environment that is guaranteed to produce a certain corrosion rate, there are specific factors that are more conducive to an accelerated rate of CUI and touchpoint corrosion. These factors include:

  • Hot or humid environments
  • Climates with high precipitation
  • Marine environments
  • Atmospheres that are conducive to sweating of the pipes, or contain chlorides and sulphides, and more

How Can I Prevent CUI?

Your biggest asset to avoiding corrosion and all associated problems is maintaining a regular inspection routine. While visual assessment is possible in some cases, it is by far the most expensive and time-consuming because it requires the removal and replacement of insulation. Comparatively, NDT external methods are much more effective for both CUI and touch point corrosion. The Russell Bracelet Probe, for example, can detect corrosion at speeds of up to 5 feet/minute through insulation, fireproofing, and aluminum and stainless-steel jackets.

Once corrosion has been detected, you will be able to repair pipes, tanks, and vessels before significant damage occurs. As a result, you save time, money, and ensure the longevity of your equipment.

Contact Russell NDE today and let us put together an inspection plan that suits your needs!


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