The paper highlights the history of 40 years dedicated by ICNDT to NDT. It makes evidence of the topic documents edited, on NDT qualification and certification of NDT personnel, the liaison with ISO TC-135 , and the on going work.
Focus is made on the ICNDT International Guide based on ISO 9712 norm. The role of NDT societies and Regional Groups of ICNDT in the certification process are highlighted.
Key words :Certification, Qualification, Harmonization, ICNDT, ISO 9712
The Foundation of ICNDT
ICNDT is the World organization for Nondestructive Testing.
It was established in 1955 by a group of European Countries, USA, Japan, China, India and the USSR.
Its main objective was to gather Scientists and Technologists from all over the world in order that they could pool together their common experiences in promoting the development of NDT applications which was in its very early stages.
Stepping further ICNDT broadened the horizons including in the scope the following objectives:
- To be the international organization that acts as prime focus on Non-Destructive Testing for the benefit of the involved Community and Public in general.
- To promote international collaboration in all matters relating to NDT.
- To encourage the foundation, growth, development and co-operation of National and regional Societies.
- To assign the place and organization of the World NDT Conference to an appropriate NDT Society or group of Societies, at intervals of four years.
- To establish with continental groupings of NDT Societies initiatives for implementing ICNDT policy.
- To encourage the formulation of International Standards on Non-Destructive Testing in collaboration with the International Standards Organisations, and other standards bodies.
The World Conferences on NDT
The NDT World Conference organized by ICNDT was the first concrete expression of this desire and it has continued to assume the organizational responsibility of this event.
The first World Conference was held in Brussels in 1955 as a tribute to Gevaert, the producer of X-Ray film, which sponsored the International meetings in Antwerp.
Subsequent World Conferences were hosted in Chicago 1957, Tokyo 1960, London 1963, Montreal 1967, Hanover 1970, Warsaw 1973, Cannes 1976, Melbourne 1979, Moscow 1982, Las Vegas 1985, Amsterdam 1989, San Paolo 1992, New Delhi 1996 and Rome 2000.
The forthcoming conference will be in Montreal 2004 and China 2008.
Besides the need to establish and improve NDT techniques, the request of common rules for the Qualification and Certification of NDT personnel growth up through the years, becoming the focus of many ICNDT meetings and an important topic of discussion during the World Conferences.
Montreal 1967 - Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel
In 1967 during 5th World NDT Conference held at Montreal ICNDT drafted the following items on the agenda:
- The Committee agree that the appropriate time has arrived for the establishment of an International Recommendation on the Qualification of NDT Personnel prepared by a
Task group of ICNDT.
- All Delegates are requested to promote through their National Standardisation
Organization the importance of ISO for a Technical Committee to deal with
These items had a strong impact on ICNDT. Three years later at the 6th World Conference in Hanover 1970 the first contributions on the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel were given by USA, Japan, Germany, France and the United Kingdom.
At that meeting the following statement on personnel Certification was made:
Representatives of each country will submit statements on the qualification system prevailing in their country. These topics should form a topic for discussion at a specific session. In the meantime statements of the present position will be communicated to ICNDT members.
In Warsaw in1973, ICNDT, during its 10th meeting, appointed a Task Group for the preparation of Guidelines dealing with the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel.
Cannes 1976 - ICNDT WH 76 - Liaison with ISO
The first ICNDT document on Qualification and Certification of NDT personnel - Levels of qualification.
The first document of ICNDT Task Group on Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel was presented at the Round Table discussion in Cannes in 1976 during 8th World Conference.
The document was a comparison of all the existing schemes among member Countries of ICNDT. This was the first step towards a more complete series of Guidelines on the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel. Recommendations to the countries have been made to make ISO knowledgeable on the importance of a working group on NDT. It was agreed at the ICNDT Meeting to forward the document to ISO-TC-135.
The ICNDT Document on minimum technical requirement for Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel - ICNDT-WH 85
In 1979 in Melbourne during 9th World Conference of NDT a further step on the topic of the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel has been made. Based on the Cannes document and the information so far the following statements have been made:
- Two types of certification schemes are present in the world: Independent Body Certification and Employer Based Certification
Mutual recognition of NDT Certificates may be possible and the working group shall try to facilitate this.
- Three levels of Qualification are generally applied by the majority of the Country members.
In the same meeting it was decided to prepare a document on the Minimum Technical Requirements for each level of Qualification relative to the different methods of NDT (RT, UT, PT, MT, ET, LT).
After extensive work in which all the main Countries of the World were involved the document on Minimal Technical Requirements of NDT was presented in Moscow at 15th ICNDT Meeting.
It received the general consensus with minor changes made in order to give more completeness to the document.
In 1985 in Las Vegas during 11th World Conference the document received the final approval for publication as an ICNDT document:
The Complete Recommendations on International Harmonisation of Training,
Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel (November 1985).
The document was sent to ISO-TC-135; it was used as a reference in the preparation of the ISO 9712 norm on the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel.
New Delhi '96 - ISO 9712 Norm
The 24th ICNDT meeting highlighted the work made by ISO-TC-135 in editing the 9712 norm, its extensive application in the member Countries. It was noted the rule of ISO 9000 in requesting certification according ISO 9712.
Copenhagen '98 - Shantou '99 - ICNDT Seminar on ISO 9712
In 1998 in Copenhagen during the 25th ICNDT meeting, it was decided to create a common framework, which would comply with ISO 9712. In addition, it was proposed to prepare a Guidance document for ISO 9712 application. Following these proposal it was decided at the PGP meeting in China (Shantou), to organize the first ICNDT Seminar on ISO 9712 Certification scheme during the World Conference in Rome. This Seminar was a great success and the importance of a basic strategy to be employed for the global mutual recognition of the Certification and Qualification schemes based on ISO 9712 was highlighted.
Roma 2000 - Updating ICNDT WH-85
During the 27th ICNDT meeting in Roma a complete revision of the document ICNDT WH85 relative to minimum technical requirement has been handed directly to ISO-TC 135 chairman. Many interesting items relative to the global mutual recognition of NDT schemes comes out from the ISO 9712 seminar.
Brisbane 2001 - ICNDT International Guide based on ISO 9712
In the PGP meeting to be held in Brisbane it will be presented the first draft of the International Guide for Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel based on ISO 9712. The major Qualification and Certification Schemes acting in the world (EN 473, ACCP, etc.) are already aligned with ISO 9712.
The document is titled as follows:
ICNDT International Guide for Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel
Based on ISO 9712.
The content of the guide will treat ( include ) al the main aspects of the qualification and certification process. Topics are as the following :
1. Forwards of the ISO TC-135 Chairman
2. Focus points of ISO 9712 norm.
3. Training, Minimum technical requirements, Minimum hours
4. Examination process :
4.1. Theoretical tests : Questionnaires
4.2. Practical tests: Test blocks, Procedures
4.3. Results evaluation
5. Examination centers
There is a strong expectation from the industries, Institution, Inspecting Agencies for a common International Guide based on one scheme as reference. ICNDT will do any effort to complete the guide for the 8th European Conference in Barcelona 2002.
Role of NDT Societies
The basic starting point for any certification process to be activated is the establishment of an NDT Society.
This organization is a guarantee for the training, the availability of information and all the items necessary for a correct and reliable qualification system of NDT Personnel.
Among 190 Countries only 62 have established NDT Societies and therefore much work must be done in order to address this situation.
Role of ICNDT Regional Groups
The primary role in the work of spreading the knowledge of NDT and providing information on how to set up an NDT Society is over the responsibility of the Regional Groups within ICNDT.
Three Regional Groups are already active:
Asia Pacific Committee
Pan American Committee
European Federation for NDT.
They have their own constitution, which in terms of both strategy and policy is in line with that of ICNDT.
The Regional Conferences will become increasingly more and more important in the promotion of NDT.
In September, this year the foundation of the African Regional Group shall take place in Tripoli.
IAEA Contribution to the ICNDT Scope
In the promotion of ISO 9712 qualification and certification system, IAEA and ICNDT have forged a strong relationship based on mutual cooperation.
ICNDT experts participate in IAEA projects for the Qualification and Certification of NDT Personnel according to ISO 9712.
Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kazakistan, Sri Lanka and Tunisia include some of the project locations of the past. The next mission will take place in Bangladesh.
ICNDT in 2001
Fifty Countries all over the world are full members of ICNDT. Other countries are in the process of becoming full members.
Argentina, Australia, Austria,
Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia Herz., Brasil, Bulgaria,
Canada, China, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Rep.,
France, Germany, Greece, Hungary,
India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Lybia, Japan, Kenia, Korea, Malaysia, Moldova
New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Romania, Russia,
Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Sweden
Taiwan, The Netherlands, Tunisia
UK, Ukraine, Uruguay, USA, Venezuela, Vietnam
ICNDT Web Site
All the activities and information shall be updated on the ICNDT web site. This network shall serve to improve and strengthen links between NDT Societies and Regional Groups
ICNDT issues a journal : The ICNDT Journal , which is edited quarterly
Harmonisation: a benefit for alle
The International Guide will promote harmonization among Countries. The industries, the institutions, the engineering companies, the insurance agencies, etc. will benefit greatly from the harmonization process. It will simplify the process of mutual recognition and will allow more attention to be devoted to technical considerations.
Most of work has been done on a voluntary basis, and my thanks goes out to all those people. The main tasks set out by the founders of ICNDT way back in the 1950's have been achieved. The ever increasing and changing demands made upon NDT brought about by the constantly changing needs of life in the 21st Century shall be answered by ICNDT through the work of Regional Groups and individual NDT Societies.