The programme aims to enhance current in-line inspection (ILI) tools and develop the next generation of technology to ensure pipeline safety, integrity, and reliability. It is directly aligned with the ongoing initiatives of both the natural gas and hazardous liquids pipeline industries to achieve the goal of zero pipeline incidents. This objective relies heavily on the performance of ILI tools and technologies.
Pipeline Research Council International (PRCI) said that while current ILI technology provides high-resolution data that forms the backbone of most integrity management programs, additional enhancements will be a key aspect for achieving the target of zero incidents, including improvements to sensors and sensor delivery platforms and data processing methods and techniques to better understand the signals/data being collected.
Association of Oil Pipe Lines Chief Executive Officer Andy Black said “Although pipelines continue to be the safest mode of transportation, it is imperative that the industry continues to innovate to ensure the integrity of these key systems to achieve our goal of zero incidents. This goal cannot be met without research and development delivering the next generation of solutions.”
PRCI has commenced the first focused project within the larger programme, investing over $US1 million to evaluate the ability of current ILI technology to determine the pipeline metallurgical ‘fingerprint’. The project is using data from ILI tool runs to determine when there are changes in pipeline materials and/or properties. The analysis and evaluation will take into account a detailed review of historical pipeline manufacturing processes and chemistries as they relate to ILI data sets, as pipe milling and manufacturing processes have changed over the years.Article continues below…
This data will help operators target areas where there may be discrepancies in their knowledge of the as-built system details, and ensure that operators are meeting the requirements for confirming traceable, verifiable, and complete records.