Bureau Veritas Successfully Tests AI System for Corrosion Detection

Image courtesy of Bureau Veritas.

Bureau Veritas (BV) (Paris, France), which specializes in testing, inspection, and certification solutions, says it has successfully proven the value of deploying an artificial intelligence (AI) solution for corrosion detection. This was carried out during a recent hull inspection of a water ballast tank on a bulk carrier by an aerial drone. The test was conducted with MaDfly Marine Drone Services in Dunkirk, France.

The results showed that the AI solution was suitable for real survey conditions. During the hull inspection, BV says it confirmed the value of the solution to support the surveyor’s decisions during a general visual inspection, as well as close-up survey of the hull. Benefits included:

  • Real-time information: The application was able to provide results on the video in real-time.
  • Offline: The application was successfully used offline, without any connection to internet.
  • Real survey conditions: The application could be deployed in the field with the computing capacity of a normal computer.

According to BV, corrosion represents one of the largest through-life cost components for ships. Owners and operators recognize that combating corrosion significantly impacts the vessels’ reliability, availability, and through-life costs. Through periodic surveys, classification surveyors assess the severity of the corrosion on hull structure and monitor its evolution during the asset’s lifecycle to decide when some steel needs to be replaced. Any replacements are done to maintain the hull’s structural integrity.

This Proof of Concept is a first step for Bureau Veritas to enable owners and managers to anticipate the necessary repairs to their vessels, according to the group. Moving forward, BV says it will further improve the solution and include new functionalities, aimed at leveraging its surveyor’s experience and data collected from digital technologies, such as remote inspection techniques.

With a more holistic perspective, this development is a continuation of BV’s digital classification program, which seeks to transform the classification operating model through three-dimensional classification, remote and augmented surveys, and predicted and optimized survey schemes.

“Digitalization is changing our daily lives, and the usage of AI in the shipping industry can make a real difference, helping the industry to be more effective with improved inspection standards and maintenance techniques,” says Laurent Blanc, senior vice president of technical and operations for BV's marine and offshore division.

“The ambition for Bureau Veritas is to develop an end-to-end solution that will support ship owners and ship managers in anticipating repairs and better maintaining the hull condition of the ship,” he adds. “It will also support BV’s team of surveyors by building their collective experience and knowledge around corrosion detection, underpinned by AI solutions.”

Moving forward, BV is planning additional investments to further develop AI-based, deep learning solutions for corrosion detection and severity assessments.

Source: Bureau Veritas, marine-offshore.bureauveritas.com.