The objective of the CrackGuard Joint Industry Project is to carry out a precompetitive research and development of affordable system for monitoring detected and allowable fatigue cracks in offshore structures based on the most recent achievements in crack propagation, sensing technology and wireless communication.


The offshore operators and their stakeholders will derive the following benefits from the CrackGuard system:

  • reduction of the operational downtime and hence maximizing operational profit by minimizing number of inspections;
  • reducing injuries to crew and surveyors by minimizing number of tank inspections;
  • preventing unexpected structural failures resulting in loss of production;
  • winning time for undertaking rational repair;
  • increasing the overall safety of crew, asset and environment.

The application of the CrackGuard sensor is as follows; during a regular inspection a surveyor detects a crack in a web of crude oil tank. In his judgment the crack has an acceptable length but he knows that this crack may grow further and may become critical. He does not know when this will happen. So, he first decides to apply the CrackGuard sensor which will notify him (or/and the operator) when the crack reaches its critical length. Secondly, he assigns an ID to it and continues its survey. After that, he could have find multiple cracks of acceptable length in several tanks. Therefore, at the end of his survey he will probably install a network of CrackGuard sensors = the CrackGuard system. Finally, the system will check periodically (e.g. monthly) the status of individual CrackGuard sensors and send the data to a remote location (surveyor/operator office). Other working principles are also possible but this will be worked out in the project.


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