ISLTSD Editorial (text only)...

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This document was first published in 'Insight' June 1994, the Journal of the British Institute of NDT. The images have been deliberately omitted from this page to improve display speed. The original document (including images) can be downloaded from the TSD Data Sheet.

Tube Sheet Diagram for Windows is a program intended for use by inspection groups in the oil, gas and power industries whose responsibilities include the examination of heat exchangers, boilers, steam generators, chillers, air conditioners and similar multi-tube equipment. Tubes in these components are inspected periodically and awarded a classification based on user defined criteria, e.g. corrosion severity, material type, defect position, etc. Tube Sheet Diagram uses these classifications to generate professional quality reports in a fraction of the time needed by manual methods.

The program runs under Microsoft Windows 3.1, Win95, and WinNT, and incorporates text, diagrams, charts and tables into the report. An infinite variety of report styles is possible, which once configured, can be saved and recalled as necessary. The program runs on PC compatible machines using the 486/Pentium processors and requires 16Mb or more of RAM.

Tube Sheet Diagram is suited for use with any size of exchanger from just a few tubes, up to the large condensers used in power generation plant comprising up to 200 rows by 200 columns, i.e., 40,000 tubes. The graphics routines permit TSD to analyse and redraw the image at the rate of more than 3,000 tubes/sec using a 486/33, (~15,000 tubes/sec using a Pentium/100 with Windows95, up to 40,000 tubes/sec using a Pentium II/266 in WinNT).

The program is adaptable to any type of inspection whose results allow tubes to be classified into categories. Each category can be individually titled to reflect the type of result, and up to 48 classifications can be included for each diagram. Up to 12 classes can be displayed simultaneously. Twelve different tube shapes are provided, and colours can be selected for both the border and the fill of each tube. A unique combination of colours and styles is probably available for almost any classification. The user simply enters the title of the category, selects the shape and colours for the display, then allocates a category to each of the tubes in the diagram.

TSD can accept manual input directly to the diagram from the keyboard or the mouse, and can also import ASCII files from third party systems, eg the Silver Wing ATIS1 (Automatic Tube Inspection System). Results can also be entered using an integral spread sheet. The spread sheet is automatically configured to correspond precisely with the structure of the template. Only valid tubes can be accessed, and only valid categories can be entered.

In Operation
Initially, a template of the tube layout is created from a basic matrix and saved in a file for future use. The matrix incorporates options for layouts based on either a rectangular grid or an inclined trellis, and can be numbered in any direction including as U-Tubes. Tubes can be deleted or added until the appropriate template configuration is achieved; the right mouse button deletes tubes, the left button re-instates them. The template may be mirrored, flipped, or duplicated, both horizontally and vertically to reduce construction time and effort. Scroll bars are provided to allow movement in any direction around the larger templates. Alternatively, the entire diagram can be reduced to fit in the visible screen area.

The Diagram/Map View allows the tubes to be allocated a category. A click with the mouse on the relevant category, then a click on the tube (or block of tubes) assigns the category, and re-draws the affected tubes. Keyboard functions allow similar data entry by keystrokes.

Multiple Data Layers
Multiple data layers can be also be included, each carrying identical templates, but with independent data and category lists. Typically one layer might record defect class, a second the defect distance along the tube, a third might record material properties, and a fourth perhaps the ultrasonic thickness. The number of layers is limited by the amount of RAM within the users system, and the number of tubes in the template.

The Display in Windows
Tube Sheet Diagram operates under Microsoft Windows 3.1 and therefore carries the advantages of familiarity with the basic operating environment. For example most functions have two or more methods of access using either the mouse, the keyboard, or the menu options. The display comprises the title and menu bars at the top; a large area at the left for the diagram, bounded by the scroll bars and rulers; and the control panel at the right.

The uppermost section of the control panel shows the current mouse position in either XY co-ordinates (in Template view) or as Row-Tube co-ordinates (in Diagram View). It also shows (in real time) the total number of tubes in each Row and Column as the mouse is moved over the display.

Six graphic buttons at the centre of the panel determine which module is currently active (Template, Diagram, Table, Chart, Report), and six titled buttons govern the current display activity.

The lower section of the Control Panel displays either the current Legend (in Diagram View), or the current numbering convention (in Template View).

Category Lists
Tubes are allocated a category from lists retained with the program. Several are supplied with Tube Sheet Diagram, but the user can modify these as necessary to meet the needs of the test. Every element of the category list can be re-defined including the title, shape, border colour and fill colour.

Circles, semi-circles and quadrants can be used to represent tubes so that meaningful output to be achieved using non-colour laser or matrix printers.

Categories can also be allocated a 'Tag' corresponding to its class. The 'Tag' can to be drawn at the centre of each tube, on the Diagram, and the same Tag is transmitted into both the Legend and the Data Table, to ensure consistent cross references in the printed report.

Tubes are numbered with either their matrix position in XY co-ordinates, or with their Row-Tube co-ordinates. In the Template View tubes are always numbered in the XY convention from the top-left of the diagram, counted to the right, and down. This is intended for use when creating templates from field sketches or manufacturers drawings. All 'rows' and 'tubes' in the matrix are included, even though tubes may not be present at given positions.

In the Diagram View the numbering is always in Row-Tube co-ordinates, counted in the direction determined by the user....up, down, left or right. Numbering can also be made using alpha characters A,B,C etc. Blank rows (rows without any tubes) are ignored, as are absent tubes. This is the traditional method of numbering used in the field. Exchangers configured as U-Tubes can be numbered either towards or away from the mid-line.

Tube numbers can be shown on the display as a 'Tag'. The Tag is printed inside the tube boundary and can be selected to be either the matrix number (X or Y), the diagram number (Row or Tube), or the 'Legend Tag' corresponding to its tube classification. The latter option is helpful when using non-colour printers.

The inclusion of a Chart with the report enhances the presentation, and simplifies the assimilation of the results. Tube Sheet Diagram automatically creates a summary chart of tubes in each category. The user can choose to show Pie Charts, horizontal or vertical Bar Charts, in 2-D or 3-D. Titles, text, fonts and colours can be defined to suit individual preferences. Charts can be configured to include only the categories displayed in the Legend, or can include all the categories available within the current category list. If only a small number of tubes are tested within a large exchanger (as a representative sample), the 'untested' tubes can be eliminated from the charts to aid clarity, without affecting the accuracy of the result.

Data Table
Test results can also be presented as tabulated lists. Tube Sheet Diagram can create several lists according to the users needs. In the summary (or Statistics) table, categories are listed with the total in each group tabulated by quantity, and by percentage. Alternatively each category can be tabulated with a sequential list of each tube within the category. This is a fast method of acquiring the list of tubes 'at risk' for example, or a list of the tubes to be 'Plugged'.

Tube Sheet Diagram includes a Report Generator which automatically incorporates the Diagram, Chart, and Summary Table which can be integrated with user defined text frames. The Report Generator incorporates many of the facilities found in document publishing programs; add or delete text, re-size Chart and Diagram frames, and add borders. The Diagram, Chart, Table and Text frames can be positioned anywhere on the page (in portrait or landscape orientation) using the drag & drop feature. Choose the font, style, size and colour of any text, and surround individual frames with borders. Highlight any frame with background shading in any colour, or hide selected frames when preparing special pages such as title sheets or explanatory notes.

Recent additions to the Report Generator include the AutoText facility, that allows special text fields such as date, time, filenames, etc, to be included by the user as text, but which are automatically updated by the system at each screen redraw, at print time, and whenever the report is recalled from disk.

The image created with the Report Generator is transmitted to the printer in vector format, not as a screen-dump, and therefore guarantees that the output is at the highest resolution possible by the printer. Any output device that has been configured for use with Microsoft Windows can be used, including dot-matrix printers, laser printers, and colour bubble-jets.

Importing Percent (%) Values
TSD can now import data from external sources as percent (%) values of wall loss, thereby saving many hours of tedious manual entry of results. Users have the facility to adjust the threshold levels for each category, then re-analyse the source data file against the new criteria. Categories can be re-captioned automatically with titles corresponding to the current threshold bounds. Data can be imported (and analysed into appropriate categories) at the rate of around 500 tubes per second, depending on the structure of the incoming data.

Future Potential
Tube Sheet Diagram for Windows operates under MS-Windows. As high performance PC's become more cost effective, the decision to adopt the Windows route for specialist graphical software becomes very compelling. Inspection Software Limited will continue to develop the program, and additional functionality will be introduced from time to time. Many of these additions will have been at the suggestion of existing users, which are always welcome. Tube Sheet Diagram for Windows is a powerful tool for the inspection industry, and is the first in a series of Windows based graphic applications from Inspection Software Limited.


Tube Sheet Diagram for Windows

Summary of Principle Features

Computer: 1GHz or faster
Configuration: Laptop, portable, or desktop.
Memory: 1GB RAM, more if possible, especially for large diagrams.
Disk Space: About 100Mb
Operating System: Windows XP, Vista, Win 7
Protection: Software is protected using a Safenet security key (dongle).
Printers: Any Windows printer colour/mono, inkjet, laser.


Max Columns: 200
Max Rows: 200
Max Tubes: 40,000
Design View - layout templates.
Map View - assign categories to tubes.
Chart View - draw charts.
Table View - list data in tabular format.
Report Generator - layout Reports, front sheets, etc.
Grid, trellis or U-tubes, optionally with top-row/column offsets left, right, up, down.
Reflect, flip or duplicate templates, horizontally and vertically.
Delete and Insert entire rows and columns.
Numbering as alpha-numeric in any direction from left, right, top, or bottom.
Reflected numbering for U-Tubes.
Template/Diagram lock during data entry.
Multiple independent data-layers.
2D and 3D diagrams, user configurable.
Up to 48 categories per file, all user defined, any 12 visible.
20 shapes for tube styles e.g., circle, semicircles, quadrant chomp, bar, cross.
Up to 10 categories with user defined thresholds for %Wall Loss imports.
Assign colour to border, fill, and background of tubes.
Assign colour to text, frame backgrounds, and page.
Pie Chart, Bar Chart (H & V), 2D and 3D
User defined colours, titles, labels.
Print direct to output device.
Statistics tables, Tubes listed by category, Individual tube record.
Colour or Mono defined by output device.
A3, A4, A5, US Letter, US Legal, etc., defined by output device.
Up to 50 frames per report including diagram, chart, table legend and text.
User defined text, font, style, size, colour, and position.
Frames can be boxed, shaded, or hidden.
WYSIWYG report layout using drag and drop method.
Text alignment, centring and justification,
Unlimited report styles.
Mouse for individual tube entry and for block entry.
Keyboard for individual tube entry.
Data import from external EC systems.
Addition interfaces can be provided (ask for quotation)

This list is only a guide to the features available in the product, and should not be regarded as the Technical Specification, which may vary from time to time.

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Copyright ISL. All rights reserved.
Created and Published by Inspection Software Limited

Last updated: 02 February, 2011 16:41:48