Italian Certification Body was established in 1957, in order to supply the national industry with a well appreciated and unique certification scheme for NDT personnel.
So in half a century CICPND issued 17,000 certifications of which 750 of level 3, 15,000 of level 2 and more recently 1250 of level 1.
During the last ten years CICPND has been accredited by SINCERT (Italian Accreditation Body, member of EA) and registered by the European Federation for NDT.
CICPND is now operating also for certification of quality systems of companies acting in the NDT field and for certification of personnel dealing with several industrial processes, like extensometry, co-ordinate measuring machines, acoustic measurements, cathodic protection, and so on.
1 CICPND role and historical notices
Italian Certification Body for NDT (CICPND) was established in 1957, as no profit Organisation, by Italian Association of Metallurgy (AIM), Italian Institute of Welding (IIS) and by a third Association nowadays not any more existing, under the National Research Council (CNR) sponsorship.
In the earliest years CICPND activity was essentially finalised to the cultural exploitation across Italy and to represent our Country at European and International levels.
From 1957 to 1983 CICPND uncharged AIM and IIS to organise, on a two years basis, several NDT congresses, among which the one held in 1977 has to be mentioned being there defined the certifying activity framework of CICPND itself.
Since 1978 different national Organisations such as Control and Inspection Official Authorities, Industrialists Federation, Technical and Scientifical Societies and specific Ministries, all them interested in NDT development, joined CICPND.
The evolution of the social impact of technologies and the relationship between producers/offers and buyers/users, with particular reference to the "new approach" in the technical certification field, so defined by CEE resolution dated 1985, May 7, required a new sectorial regulation on the certification itself, fixed by an updated CICPND constitution.
In June 1988 CICPND was then formally re-established, following the relevant national mandatory rules, by the above mentioned original establishers and by the Italian Association for NDT (AIPND).
The new CICPND started his additional activities from 1st January 1989, maintaining his original acronym name together with a lightly modified denomination with a constitution more adequate to the national certification needs.
In particular the institutional scopes highlighted by the new constitution give better emphasis to the certification of NDT Personnel and of Company Quality Systems.
Since 1994 CICPND has been accredited by Italian National Accreditation Body (SINCERT) as Certifying Body operating in the NDT field. The record of such recognisation is the number 012/C of the SINCERT Register of Certifying Bodies.
More recently CICPND was approved by the European Federation for NDT for the multilateral recognization of issued certifications.
Today CICPND is under the sponsorship of:
Its further members, in addition to the above mentioned founder members AIM, IIS and AIPND, are:
- National Research Council (CNR),
- National Institute for Renewable Energies (ENEA),
- Italian Inspection and Control Authority for Pressure Vessels (ISPESL),
- Italian Register for Ships Classification (RINA),
- Italian National Standardisation Body (UNI).
- National Association of Mechanical Enterprises (ANIMA),
- Italian Electrical Utlity (ENEL),
- National Association of Chemical Enterprises (FEDERCHIMICA),
- Transportation Ministry and, as observers,
The general consensus gained all over Italy gave to CICPND the status of national focal point about the technical certification, so determining, still from the beginning all the conditions for bilateral and mutual recognizations.
2 CICPND organisational structure
The following scheme highlights how the CICPND is organised for the definition of its procedures and the certification activities.
The CICPND President has the powers for the formal representativity of CICPND itself; he is supported by two Vice Presidents, one Treasurer and a General Secretary.
The Board of Directors, which refers to the General Assembly, is representative of all Italian national NDT interests.
The above mentioned representativity is a characteristic that fulfils all requirements of EN 45013 standard and that ensures no penalisation for the different subjects involved.
The organisational and technical tasks are in charge of the Central Technical Committee and its Commissions, while the certification tasks are in charge of the Central Certification Committee.
3 Certification of NDT Personnel
The Certification of NDT Personnel is managed on the basis of the European Standard: EN 473, whose official version, in Italian language, is represented by the UNI EN 473.
Following its publication, achieved on July 1993, CICPND, beeing also deeply involved in the CEN/TC 138 "Non destructive Testing" activity and specifically in the definition of the standard itself, started immediately with a small number of amendments to its previous certification procedures in order to follow the new prescriptions, being itself recognised as the Certifying Body mentioned in the EN 473.
The standard UNI EN 473, in highlighting the tasks of the Certifying Body, recommends how it should be "independent" and satisfy the EN 45013 requirements for its structure and procedures.
The CICPND organisation, at that time satisfying the general principles of the standard 45013, had in practice to be only described in a new Quality Assurance Manual and in the operative procedures recalled in the Manual itself. Furthermore CICPND issued revised rules on the Qualification and on the approval of the Examination Centres for the CICPND certification at levels 1 and 2.
Particularly on this last subject, CICPND made its efforts so that the criteria for the organisation and for the approval of Examination Centres would be quickly applied in Italy. The results are such that, at the present time, the approved and operative Examination Centres are 16 in number, together with additional 6 still under approval; they are now the focal points able to cover all certification demands across the country.
In other terms the approved Examination Centres flexibility allows to offer a service adequate to the industry requests throughout a wide range of different possibilities specifically arranged in order to achieve the best costs reduction and to save Clients production time.
The above behaviour is on one hand the consequence of the EN 473 approach to the NDT Personnel certification, where the levels 1 and 2 have to be examined by the Examination Centres, while the levels 3 have to be examined directly by the Certification Body; on the other hand such behaviour aimed to supply a service more and more improved in order to obtain a living costs reduction so to minimise the impact on the manufactured products and on the competitiveness in the market.
Moreover the CICPND "Register of NDT certified personnel" is another important issue as a key element for the information diffusion among mutually recognised Certifying Bodies.
4 Certification of NDT Companies Quality Systems
The CICPND activity does not only deal with the Personnel certification, but has been widen, since 1997, to the Quality Systems Certification of companies in NDT field.
The relevant accreditation by SINCERT is in progress and it is expected to be officially completed within 2000.
This new stream is the CICPND right answer to a world running in a common direction, that is to say a world of clear rules and of competition among private companies.
The Italian companies, whose activities are involved in the NDT field, strongly believe that the basic growth factors are related to quality certification; these factors are substantially those of a firm image improvement will and those of a greater attention to technological processes organisation.
Not the last, a clear pulse has been given by Clients and by Purchasers that time by time realised the opportunity to ask for services and goods in conformity with given quality and efficiency standards and, on this basis, have requested the certification.
Decisive for this development has been and will be the effect that the certified companies stretch more and more to utilise certified partners.
In the next years it will be possible to observe like an explosion of the certifications in the NDT field, particularly taking into account the mandatory minimum requirements defined by the European Directives.
CICPND is therefore ready to reply and to support this specific demand by means of the up-dated proper tools of a Certification Body.
5 Certification of other industrial processes Personnel
The choices that can push an enterprise to obtain, by quality point of view, the "certification" are numerous, but the main factor is represented by the conviction that the quality management can determine a quality product improvement and in the mean time reduces significantly the production costs, not only the operative ones caused by the "non conformities" but mostly the ones strictly related to the "human factors".
The "certified quality" is a primary element in the competition because its fundamentals are based on objective evidences and it acts in the full involvement of all the industrial-economics sectors, determining a balance between supply and demand.
In the above mentioned behaviour CICPND is operating in order to diffuse the "certified quality and "personnel certification" fundamentals, in order to offer a proper tool to other fields different than non-destructive tests.
On this basis the sensitisation on the Personnel certification culture has been performed at national level and it gave successful results in the fields of industrial processes, like extensometry, co-ordinate measuring machines, acoustic measurements, cathodic protection; recently it was opened a new and very important application field that is to say the concrete and its different forms.
At the present time CICPND is involved in the feasibility analysis for the cultural heritages Personnel certification, field whose implications are so important that it is considered strategic at national level.
Furthermore CICPND has been recently charged by Italian Transportation Ministry to define the structure of the certification scheme for the Personnel certification involved in the passengers transportation by rope.
The explanation of the so gained results are surely positioned in the recognised specific high technical competency of CICPND in the field of Personnel certification and in order to give precise guarantees to the industry that the best results can be achieved at the more effective costs.
In some half-century of life CICPND issued 17,000 NDT certifications.
At the present time CICPND is able to serve the national industry all around Italy by means of its approved Examination Centres.
CICPND is accredited by EA trough SINCERT and it is recognised by EFNDT trough AIPND.
CICPND now is particularly spreading its activity of the Certification of Personnel in a number of industrial processes, not only in Italy but also in different Countries where the certification scheme is not any more present.