ISO 15614-1 is out! But please don’t freak out. We at WeldNote are working hard to implement it into our software, and we’re writing this piece to let you know what you need to worry about!

To start off, the first important piece of information you need to know is that your old PQRs from this standard are still valid to this revision of 2017.

So in the beginning, the first thing we notice is that ISO has implemented 2 different levels of qualification. They pulled out their creative juices and named them:

  • Level 1
  • Level 2

Yes, I wouldn’t give them extra points for originality. But what are the differences between them? If you have worked with ASME IX you will be familiar with Level 1. The qualification ranges for WPQR are based off of the american standard. As for Level 2, it is based off of the previous version of ISO 15614-1

Manufacturers will now have the possibility of qualifying WPQR to any of these two levels. If your company works with EN 1090 EXC 2, or do metalwork that isn’t very stress intensive, the requirements of the previous version of ISO 15614-1 are very restrictive, and qualifying such a document is very expensive.

The first qualification range you get is the levels themselves. If you qualify a WPQR in Level 2, you are qualified to work in Level 1 projects, but the other way around is not possible. A Level 1 WPQR will not allow you to work in Level 2 projects.

ISO 15614-1 (2017) Changes:

Examination and Testing

So the inclusion of the levels makes for different options for testing. If you have a Level 1 project coming in, these are the tests your Level 1 PQR should take:

Butt joints with full penetration

  • Visual testing: 100%
  • Transverse tensile test: 2 speciments
  • Transverse bend test: 4 specimens

Fillet welds

  • Visual testing: 100%
  • Macroscopic examination: 2 specimens

For the level 2 PQR’s, there was no change from the previous version of ISO 15614-1, so your PQR’s will remain valid (unlike the change from EN 288-3 to ISO 15614-1)

As far as the standards go, they have been updated to their newer ISO counterparts, here is a table with the respective standards to be used.

Test Old Standard New Standard
Visual Examination EN 970 ISO 17637
Radiographic Testing EN 1435 ISO 17632 (Part 1 and 2)
Ultrasonic Testing EN 1714 ISO 17640
Penetrant Testing EN 571-1 ISO 3452-1
Magnetic Particle Testing EN 1290 ISO 17638
Transverse Tensile Test EN 895 ISO 4136
Bend Test EN 910 ISO 5173
Macroscopic Examination EN 1321 ISO 17639
Impact Testing EN 875 ISO 9016
Hardness Testing EN 1043-1 ISO 9015-1

Maximum permitted Hardness Values

For materials of groups 4 and 5 (Cr-Mo steels like P11 or CrMo91), the maximum permitted levels have been raised. The new value is 350 HV10 compared to the 320 HV10 value of the previous version.

Higher values may also be accepted if specified in the test for these group 4 and 5 metals.

Acceptance Levels

There is now a new table that gives information on the acceptance levels of each imperfection in a weld. For Level 2 PQR’s, the information comes from ISO 5817, so there are no changes here. As for level 1 PQR’s, here are the acceptance levels

  • Cracks: Not permitted
  • Lack of Fusion: Not Permitted
  • Incomplete Root Penetration: Not Permitted
  • Continuous Undercut: No Specific Requirements
  • Excess Weld Metal: No Specific Requirements
  • Excessive convexity: No Specific Requirements
  • Incorrect Weld Toe: No Specific Requirements
  • Excessive asymmetry of fillet weld:  h <= 3
  • Excessive throat thickness: No Specific Requirements
  • All other imperfections: No Specific Requirements

Range of Qualification

Table 5 – Range of qualification for steel groups and sub-groups

There were some significant changes on how many steels your PQR qualifies. Plus this table is a lot clearer than it was before. Here are the changes.

Test Piece Previous Approval Range New Approval Range
B.M. 1 B.M. 2 B.M. 1 B.M. 2 B.M. 1 B.M. 2
1 1 1 1 1 1
2 2 2, 1 2, 1 2, 1 2, 1
2 1 No reference 2, 1 1
3 3 3,2,1 3,2,1 3,2,1 3,2,1
3 2 No reference 3,2,1 2,1
3 1 No reference 3,2,1 1
4 4 4 4, 2, 1 4 4, 3, 2, 1
4 3 No reference 4 3, 2, 1
4 2 No reference 4 2, 1
4 1 No reference 4 1
5 5 5 5,2,1 5 5,2,1
5 4 No reference 5 4
5 3 No reference 5 3
5 2 No reference 5 2
5 1 No reference 5 1
6 6 6 6, 2, 1 6 6,5,4,3,2,1
6 5 No reference 6 5,4,3,2,1
6 4 No reference 6 4,3,2,1
6 3 No reference 6 3,2,1
6 2 No reference 6 2,1
6 1 No reference 6 1
7 7 7 7 7 7
7 6 No reference 7 5,6
7 5 No reference 7 5
7 4 No reference 7 4
7 3 7 3,2,1 7 3,2,1
7 2 7 2,1 7 2,1
7 1 No reference 7 1
8 8 8 8 8 8
8 7 No reference 8 7
8 6 8 6,4,2,1 8 6,5,4,2,1
8 5 8 6.2,6.1,5,4,2,1 8 5,4,2,1
8 4 No reference 8 4
8 3 8 3,2,1 8 3,2,1
8 2 8 2,1 8 2,1
8 1 No reference 8 1
9 9 9 9 9 9
9 8 No reference 9 8
9 7 No reference 9 7
9 6 No reference 9 6
9 5 No reference 9 5
9 4 No reference 9 4
9 3 No reference 9 3,2,1
9 2 No reference 9 2,1
9 1 No reference 9 1
10 10 10 10 10 10
10 9 No reference 10 9
10 8 10 8 10 8
10 7 No reference 10 7
10 6 10 6,4,2,1 10 6,4,2,1
10 5 10 6.2,6.1,5,4,2,1 10 5,4,3,2,1
10 4 No reference 10 4
10 3 10 3,2,1 10 3,2,1
10 2 10 2,1 10 2,1
10 1 No reference 10 1
11 11 11 11,1 11,1 11,1
11 10 No reference 11 10
11 9 No reference 11 9
11 8 No reference 11 8
11 7 No reference 11 7
11 6 No reference 11 6
11 5 No reference 11 5
11 4 No reference 11 4
11 3 No reference 11 3,2,1
11 2 No reference 11 2,1
11 1 No reference 11,1 1

As you can see, there were a lot of changes, noticed by the “No Reference”. I have put the most significant ones in bold text. The most relevant one is the group 11 ones. American grade carbon steels (like A106 Gr. B) belonged in group 11, and that wouldn’t allow you to weld an S235 or S275 steel, because these were from group 1. With this new revision of ISO 15614-1 you will be able to use your old PQRs made from group 11 steels, to weld EN/ISO grade carbon steels.

Range of qualification for Butt Welds, T-Joints, Branch connections and Fillet Welds – Material Thickness

The first point to address is something that wasn’t mentioned in previous versions of ISO 15614-1. The deposited thickness is the variable that should be used to determine if you’re qualified for a specific production thickness.

If you are qualified for a specific welded thickness range, production welds must be within this range. When you have dissimilar sizes welds, the following rules apply:

  • PQR qualified on 30 mm or bigger plate/pipe test piece:
    • In this scenario, one of the base materials can be of any thickness, but one of the base materials must be contained within the approval range of the PQR
    • Example that will be acceptable:
      • Welded Thickness approved: 18 to 64 mm
      • Base Material 1: 32 mm
      • Base Material 2: 200 mm
  • PQR qualified on test piece smaller than 30 mm:
    • Both base materials have to be contained in the approval range

Table 7 values – Butt Welds

ISO 15614-1 Butt Weld 2017

For Level 1 PQRs, if you are used to work with ASME IX you will recognize these values. The list is the same. As for Level 2, there is a significant change for companies that do thin plates/pipes (less than 3 mm).

  • BEFORE: If the Test Piece plate is smaller than or equal to 3 mm, you are qualified to 0,7t to 2t
  • NOW: If the Test Piece plate is smaller than or equal to 3 mm, you are qualified to 0,5t to 2t

Table 8 values – Fillet Welds

ISO 15614-1 Fillet Weld 2017

Approval range values remain unchanged for the Fillet Welds with the exception of a small note that says: In case of different material thicknesses, the range of qualification of both thicknesses of the test pieces shall be calculated separately.

 

 

 

8.4.3 Type of Weld

The biggest noticeable difference in this section is point (i).

  1. i) welds made from both sides with or without gouging qualify welds made from one side with backing;

Essentially all your both sides PQRs are now eligible to weld from a single side, provided they use backing.

ISO 15614-1 (2017) also became slightly less restrictive with point (j).

  1. j) When impact or hardness requirements apply, itis not permitted to change a multi-run deposit into a single run deposit (or single run on each side) or vice versa for a given process;

Before, it was not allowed to change from multi-layer to single-layer in any situation, and now this only applies when there are Impact Requirements.

8.4.3 Filler Materials

There is a significant change on the approval range of filler metals. In the previous version of ISO 15614-1 you weren’t allowed to change the trade name of the electrode (111 process), wire (114,136,132 processes), or wire/flux (12 processes) if there were any sort of impact requirements. In the new version of ISO 15614-1 (2017) you can now change the trade name of the electrode, so long as the WPS is only used on applications for requirements above -20ºC

8.4.8 Preheating

Another significant change on this standard. In the previous version the preheating temperature from the test piece would become the minimum approval range. In ISO 15614-1 (2017) a 50ºC decrease is now possible on the written WPS.

8.4.8 Interpass Temperature

Like the preheating, there’s also a 50ºC change in this parameter. The maximum interpass temperature approved is 50ºC above the one used on the test piece. But only for steels other than groups 8 (Stainless Steels), 10 (Duplex Steels), and 41 to 48 (Nickel Alloys).

8.5.2.3.2, 8.5.2.3.3, 8.5.2.3.4 – Welding Machines

ISO 15614-1 (2017) now features specific rules for transfer modes, including the specialized waveforms like CMT, STT transfers and the like.

For this new version, whenever you have one of these special processes, the approval range is only for the same manufacturer of the power source. If it’s just regular pulsed welding, the manufacturer is not an essential variable and as such may be changed on the WPS, but should still be registered.

Final Thoughts

These are the main changes on ISO 15614-1 from the previous version. Everything that is related to Level 1 PQRs is completely new, so I would recommend you would verify these yourself. They are a bit extensive but ISO 15614-1 is a lot clearer than the previous revisions.

Overall, if you have any specific question, you may hit me up on Linkedin to discuss additional details.

Visit us at http://weldnote.com (WeldNote, Welding Management Software)

-Tiago Pereira
CEO at WeldNote, Welding Management Software