LineCat Inspection for Pipelines – Technology Overview, Benefits and Development
Pipelines though usually inert, pose many potential hazards if permitted to deteriorate. The pressure contained within can escape, cause blowouts, cracks could cause spills, environmental damage can ensue, legal cases, media condemnation, personnel safety are just some of the issues that could arise from poorly kept pipelines and piping.
The usage of regular NDT (Non Destructive Testing) methods can help make sure the safe operation of pipelines and offer extra intelligence on what is happening in each area of the pipeline, which might help to produce more informed decisions and take appropriate actions.
An example of this is to do an entire inspection to begin with, gauge the amount of deterioration, identify vulnerable areas, and then inspect the less urgent areas less regularly. For a pipeline it may not be financially possible inspect the entire pipeline all at once, according to its length, however the principle can put on to smaller segments also.
One of the greatest developments for pipeline inspection is released of an Houston lab, using the progression of automated long run pipeline scanning, using LFET (Low Frequency Electromagnetic Testing) and UT (Ultrasonic Testing) technology.
The equipment was bore beyond necessity, each time a prominent petroleum company suffered a loss of containment incident in the scenic and environmentally important North Slope of Alaska. The cause of the leaks came to exist by internal pitting corrosion on the bottom 50 % of transit pipes (0.85m – 34 inch diameter). The pipeline was in charge of the transportation of 400,000 barrels of petroleum every day and immediately had to be shut off.
Due for cross hatch cutter the prospect of massive environmental disaster, press, environmental groups and jurisdictional authorities acted quickly. A Corrective Action Order (CAO) was issued and legally bound the business to perform UT inspection exclusively across the 4 to 8 o’clock sectors of most 11 miles of pipeline.
In practice this turned out to be incredibly slow, and barely feasible, with 108 UT technicians working twenty-four hours a day, it was still estimated to consider 184 days, as a result of various constraints. A case was made available to USDOT for your utilization of alternative technologies. After tests were performed with EMAT (ElectroMagnetic Acoustic Transducer), and LFET, LFET was determined to function as the far better technology and USDOT accepted the proposition for that usage of LFET.
Due to technology already underway for deep water testing of your similar nature, a fast modified rig was put together for that automated scanning using RFET and UT. The rig proved effective and saved technicians from potentially hazardous height, tough to reach areas over water, and exposure.
The rig continues to be progressed into the LineCat, for automated pipeline scanning, and is also still probably the most effective solutions for pipeline inspection.