·Table of Contents
·Education, Training and Certification
The European Certification Process (ECP)A Joint paper by Ulrich Kaps (DGZfP), Roger Roche (COFREND) and John Thompson (BINDT)
The main objectives at that time were twofold:
A working group was formed from representatives of each of the founding NDT Societies (the authors of this paper). This group was constituted at a June 1997 meeting of the ECNDT Qualification & Certification Working Group as a Working Group of ECNDT with a remit to develop the European Certification Process on the basis of an initial proposal by the founding NDT societies.
The Working Group drafted base documents (Annex A), which were circulated for internal comment and subsequently modified by consensus to reflect a level of requirement which satisfies EN473 (2000) and which would be acceptable to all participants.
The work also included the development a European question bank available in the three languages of CEN, each of the participants contributing sufficient questions to construct three examination papers for each examination module encompassed by the ECP.
It is intended that, once the European Certification Programme is fully documented and successful trials have been carried out by the founders, the EFNDT ECP specifications will become available for implementation by other National Certifying Bodies, in whole or in part, to augment or supersede their existing requirements. Participating National Certifying Bodies will continue to maintain their separate independent status and national accreditation.
Included herein is information on the ECP quality and technical requirements, the management and administration arrangements, details of costs for participants, and conditions for participation by National Certifying Bodies (NCB).
This paper represents the personal views of the authors and includes references to proposed policy subject to approval by EFNDT.
For the time being the methods covered by ECP are ET, MT, PT, RT, UT and VT for the 'pre and in-service inspection sector'. Other industry and product sectors will be covered in due course.
The CEC Secretariat is provided by COFREND, 1 rue Gaston Boissier, 75724 Paris Cedex 15, France. Tel. +33 (1) 44 19 76 18, Fax. +33 (1) 44 19 75 04, email: email@example.com
ECP documents and the databank of examination questions are managed and controlled by BINDT Certification Services Division, 1 Spencer Parade, Northampton NN1 5AA, United Kingdom.
Tel. +44 (01604) 259056, FAX. +44 (01604) 231489, email. PCN@bindt.org
Promotion, marketing and international recognition aspects are managed by DGZfP, Max-Planck-Str. 6, 12489 Berlin, Germany. Tel. +49 30 678 07 140, email. firstname.lastname@example.org
National Certifying Bodies wishing to display the ECP logo on certificates of competence issued to NDT personnel will be authorised to do so by the EFNDT Certification Executive Committee (CEC). Authorised use of the ECP logo is conditional upon meeting the published criteria in accordance with policy agreed by the EFNDT.
The CEC is to be responsible to the EFNDT for setting, maintaining and reviewing criteria for applicant and authorised National Certifying Bodies and will advise the EFNDT on the justification for allowing any particular NCB to use the ECP logo.
National Certifying Bodies will be able seek authorisation to use the ECP logo on specific certificates of competence, e.g., on MT/PT/VT certificates issued for the Pre & In Service Inspection Multi-sector only. In this case the logo may not be used on any other certificates.
The CEC will require assurance at all times that authorised NCBs are applying the EFNDT rules correctly and consistently, and will publish documents setting out the conditions of initial and continued authorisation of National Certifying Bodies to participate in ECP.
The ECP will offer the following additional benefits to the participating National Certifying Bodies:
In detail, the ECP criteria cover the following areas.
EFNDT provides a central bank of validated multi-choice examination questions. Examination papers are constructed by the authorised National Certifying Body from the ECP question bank. For the specific written examination, in order to take into account the differences in national codes and specifications, up to 25% of national specific questions can be used.
ECP examination questions, which may be used only in examinations for which the National Certifying Body is authorised, require handling with a high degree of security and confidentiality. EFNDT data held at examination centres must be subject to strict measures to prevent loss or compromise.
The participating NCB's operating procedures must only permit the use of ECP questions for those examinations covered by the authorisation issued by the CEC.
Only personnel authorised in writing by the Authorised National Certifying Body may have access to ECP examination questions, which must be stored in an area to which candidates do not have unsupervised access.
NCBs are required to implement a procedure by which candidate's replies to questions are periodically reviewed in order to detect those examination questions which consistently elicit incorrect answers. This procedure will require the CEC Secretariat to be notified of any such examination questions.
The minimum number and type of practical specimens required at each NCB's examination centre is specified in EFNDT/S/02.
No specimens which have been used for training purposes during the preceding twelve months may be utilised within ECP examinations.
NCB examination centres shall hold sufficient relevant test equipment to enable the proper conduct of EFNDT authorised ECP examinations for a stated number of candidates at any one practical examination sitting. The examination centre shall, as far as practicable, maintain all such equipment in a serviceable condition and provide for its maintenance, calibration and overhaul as necessary.
Quality Management System
EFNDT Authorised National Certifying Bodies are required to develop, maintain and implement, as a minimum, the quality management systems and procedures required by European standards EN45013 and EN473.
Conduct Of Examinations
The NCB approved examination centre(s) shall have in place an operating procedure which ensures that candidates are, at all times during examination, closely supervised by a suitably qualified and authorised examiner or invigilator who will ensure that no candidate is permitted an unfair advantage or to collude with other candidates.
All personnel involved with examinations shall ensure that no ECP examination material is removed by any candidate.
A NCB fulfilling these requirements and which is accredited by an accreditor which is signatory to the EA Mutual Recognition Agreement should complete and submit to the EFNDT CEC Secretariat a completed application, together with a copy of the certificate of accreditation and the related schedule showing the scope of that accreditation.
For those certification bodies accredited by an accreditor which is not signatory to the EA Mutual Recognition Agreement, an initial technical audit against EN473 and ECP criteria will be carried out by two experts nominated by the EFNDT Certification Executive Committee. The cost of the audit will be covered by an agreed standard fee, plus direct cost.
Where the above requirements cannot be fulfilled because there is no EA accreditor willing or able to carry out an accreditation audit, the EFNDT CEC will commission a full quality system and technical audit against EN45013, EN473 and the relevant ECP criteria. The cost of the audit will be covered by an agreed standard fee, plus direct cost.
Where EFNDT carries out a quality system and /or technical audit, the date of expiry of any resulting EFNDT authorisation shall be three years from the date of completion of the audit.
Subject to the provision of evidence of continued compliance with the requirements, the EFNDT authorised NCB may display the ECP logo on relevant certificates for which authorisation is awarded.
NCBs which are accepted by the CEC, will be authorised to use the ECP logo on their certificate for a period of 3 years.
Where the conditions regarding accreditation are not fulfilled, a quality system and technical audit will be required every three years to maintain EFNDT authorisation.
Documents fall within one of five groups:
|e)||Certification||(EFNDT/S/01 + Appendix A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, etc.) where:|
|A = Aerospace (industrial multi-sector)|
|B = Castings (single product sector)|
|C = Welds or welded fabrications (single product sector)|
|D = Wrought products (single product sector)|
|E = Pre & in-service inspection (industrial multi-sector)|
|F = Railway (industrial multi-sector)|
|G = Tubes and Pipes (single product sector)|
|H = Metal manufacturing (industrial multi-sector)|
ECP CONTROLLED DOCUMENTS
|EFNDT/I/01A||ECP documents: catalogue and issue status|
|EFNDT/I/01B||EFNDT Authorised ECP National Certifying Bodies (to be published)|
|EFNDT/I/02||Guidance for accreditors (draft)|
|EFNDT/I/03||Leaflet - General Information on the European Certification Process|
|EFNDT/C/00||Memorandum of Understanding between Founders of EFNDT Certification Process|
|EFNDT/C/01||ECP CEC: constitution, terms of reference and method of working|
|EFNDT/P/01||Procedure for the audit of NCBs seeking authorisation to use the ECP Logo|
|EFNDT/P/02||Management and administration of the ECP|
|EFNDT/P/03||Complaints and appeals|
|EFNDT/P/04||EFNDT Auditor selection criteria|
|EFNDT/S/01||Specification for ECP practical examination content|
|Appendix A||Aerospace - multi-sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix B||Castings - single product sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix C||Welds and Welded Fabrications - single product sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix D||Wrought Products - single product sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix E||Pre & in-service inspection - multi sector|
|Appendix F||Railway - multi-sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix G||Tubes and Pipes - single product sector (not yet published)|
|Appendix H||Metal Manufacturing - multi-sector (not yet published)|
|EFNDT/S/02||Specification for practical examination specimens|
|EFNDT/S/03||Correct use of the ECP logo|
The current status of all draft and published ECP documents is detailed in reference EFNDT/I/01A
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