A basic assumption often made in risk- and reliability-based inspection planning is that a Bayesian approach can be used. This implies that probabilities of failure can be updated in a consistent way when new information (from inspections and repairs) becomes available. The Bayesian approach and a no-crack detection assumption imply that the inspection time intervals usually become longer and longer with time. For ageing platforms several small cracks should be expected to be observed according to the bath-tub curve development often assumed - implying an increased risk for crack initiation (and coalescence of small cracks) and increased crack growth. This should imply shorter inspection time intervals for ageing structures. Different approaches for updating inspection plans for older installations are proposed. The most promisingmethod consists of increasing the rate of crack initiations at the end of the expected lifetime - corresponding to a bath-tub hazard rate effect. The approach illustrated is for welded steel details in platforms. Systems effects are considered, including the use of dependence between inspection and failure events in different components for inspection planning.
Journal of Risk and Reliability, 2008, Vol 222, Issue 3, p. 403-417
Reliability and risk-based inspection planning; Ageing offshore installations; Bayesian approach; System reliability; Fatigue