Skip to main content

Proposal of a Method for Implementing Infrared Scanning Inspection Programs in Merchant Vessels

Buy Article:

$40.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)


This paper summarizes a proposal for implementing a predictive maintenance program based on infrared scanning inspection in merchant vessels. Current use of infrared inspection in merchant vessels is discussed, with an analysis of the problems and the benefits. Finally, a method for developing an inspection plan is proposed. The method consists of a selection of parameters, with consideration of infrared thermography and which general and specific criteria must be followed. Infrared thermal imaging is currently used for many engineering activities, mainly in industrial plants, in which predictive maintenance is widely used. However, this technique is being applied only in some types of merchant vessels, such as fast ferries and, in general, high-speed crafts. The main objective of the maintenance program proposed in this paper is prevention of loss by reducing the risks of fire and explosion. Twenty percent of the world ship losses in the last 25 years were caused by fire or explosions, the second most common cause of loss after bad weather. The proposed method consists of inspection and diagnostic tasks done on a systematic basis. The measurements of surface temperatures can detect hot spots and, subsequently, potential ignition sources. All the electrical power, distribution, and receptor devices; insulations; and any hot surface in the engine room, such as boiler casings and exhaust pipes, are included in the maintenance program. The second objective is related to the savings achieved by preventive maintenance reduction and the benefits of healthy facilities. Thermal scanning can detect small temperature differences between close points on a surface. This capability allows the detection of potential failures, such as cracks and lack of insulation in pipes and casings, thermal isolations, and small leaks of pressurized fluids such as steam, compressed air, and nonvisible fluids. The authors are currently working on a research project sponsored by the Spanish Maritime Authority within the scope of the development of new technologies focused on increasing maritime safety. One of the tasks of that project is the method of carrying out the inspection programs presented in this paper.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2004-01-01

More about this publication?
  • Marine Technology is dedicated to James Kennedy, 1867-1936, marine engineer, and longtime member of the Society, in recognition and appreciation of his sincere and generous interest in furthering the art of ship design, shipbuilding, ship operation, and related activities.

    The Technical papers in this quarterly flagship journal cover a broad spectrum of research on the latest technological breakthroughs, trends, concepts, and discoveries in the marine industry. SNAME News is packed with Society news and information on national, section, and local levels as well as updates on committee activities, meetings, seminars, professional conferences, and employment opportunities.

    For access to Volume 47 Issue 2 and later, please contact SNAME
  • Information for Authors
  • Membership Information
  • Volume 47 Issue 2 and later
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more