Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Expertise from Nuclear Industry for Corrosion Management in India: Present Chairman of CII Corrosion Management Committee

The Hindu : News / National : Chetal takes charge as IGCAR Director

Dr Baldev Raj retired as Director of IGCAR, Kalpakkam, India. He is the Chairman of CII Corrosion Management Committee. It is good to see that CII Corrosion Management Committee is headed by Dr Baldev Raj, a leading expert in the Indian nuclear industry.

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Quote from "India’s Offshore Integrity – Learn and Use Global Offshore Experience" published in Offshore World, 2010: http://corrosionmanagementsurvey.in/our-publications/

Lord Cullen, commissioned by the Department of Energy, UK to investigate the accident of Piper Alpha, recommends that hazards should be assessed from the earliest stages of design in the same way the nuclear industry does. The new safety directorate for offshore installation in the HSE may draw on the expertise of the nuclear industry (Source: The Public Inquiry into the Piper Alpha Disaster, Cullen, The Honourable Lord, HM Stationery Office, 1990).
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S.C. Chetal took over as Director of the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research (IGCAR) at Kalpakkam on Saturday. The IGCAR is the architect of Fast Breeder Reactor (FBR) programme and it has designed and developed the 500 MWe Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR) under construction at Kalpakkam.

1 comment:

  1. Manickam Valliappan • I am sharing the observations made by Dr Gopal on our discussion in "Research and Development in India" forum.

    Gopal Gopinathan • As a former colleague of Dr. Placid Rodriguez at BARC, I wish to extend my well wishes to Mr. Chetal in his new position as IGCAR Director. Placid and I along with Dr. V.S. Arunachalam were part of a close knit team who worked on stress corrosion cracking at BARC during the late 60's and the memories of Kanthal on Silica furnaces, Liq N2 and Instron, TEM and home built ultrasonic NDT are still fresh in my mind.

    Corrosion Management is indeed a serious issue and Dr. Baldev Raj has an important function not only in the Nuclear Industry but also in the jet turbines, hydroelectric and even wind generators where the failure due to corrosion is 3 times as much as hydro generators. If our ancestors can build the Minar at Qutub, surely Dr. Raj and his committee members can do a good job today.
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    Gopal Gopinathan • The team that I was part of at NAL (National Aeronautical Lab as it was known then) spent a lot of time on the study of interstitial corrosion of the wings of Mig19 - Although not directly related to corrosion, we developed powder metallurgy methods to develop 6Al4V alloys, Zircolloys and thoria dispersed Nimonic alloy turbine blades etc. But as I had said in the survey, such work even today is limited nuclear and petroleum industries.

    Corrosion is an all pervasive business negative. It is so relevant to so many aspects of modern technology that I am truly surprised at the lack of any effort in India to study the problem even focused just the fiscal issues. Chlorinated water is distributed to majority of the households through the ancient galvanized pipes! Prosthetics, even development of such critical items like a Stent is not being studied for the highly corrosive bodily fluids. Railroad ties are corroded to the point line men can break off these with hand tools. Nuts and bolts on rail coaches are an eye sore. Kerosene has a bigger market as a release agent for these rusty problems! Turbology is not even in the vocabulary of our auto industry. Since noise pollution is the Indian norm, corroded gears on heavy machinery seems to worry no one until a catastrophic breakdown. Rebars for concrete are never looked at as a corrosion prone issue with resultant failure of building structures.

    The problem is not that technocrats are unaware of the corrosion issue but the lack of a regualtory body or bodies to control the parameters that lead to corrosion and the lack of serious engineering syllabus treating corrosion as the basis of structural engineering.

    Regulatory Agencies in India are primarily focused on policy matters and have no means to establish a National Standard. BIS (or the old ISI) seems to focus again on ONG industry. We have no institution a la ASME, ANSI, IEC, NSF, VDE, TUF, JIS, UL etc that categorically set forth regulations on materials and application related composition and processes.

    -Gopal

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