Pipeline Integrity Congress – ReCap

Posted on 30. Nov, 2014 by in pipeline, Uncategorized

The attendees and speakers at the Pipeline Integrity Congress covered all aspects of crude pipeline transport.  There was a mix of academics, operators, and contractors- or suppliers, each of us with a different viewpoint.  As typical of a conference organized by European managers, there was time to hear a talk, discuss it, then have a break in the exhibition hall with refreshments, then convene for a few talks, break for a sponsored lunch, have talks and tak a break, have talks and discussion, and have a sponsored supper.  It made for an exchange of ideas.  The group was large enough to fill the room, but not so large that you couldn’t get with each other.  As usual, I knew perhaps 1-2 people when I got there, but left with business cards.  The equipment and techniques, i.e. the use of a combination of HP WaterJetting and Ultra High Pressure WaterJetting to remove the coatings prior to conventional abrasive blast cleaning to get back to the “traditional” surface – I first saw in Wharton Texas in the 1980’s.  Cleaning and inspecting and physically looking at long sections of pipelines is not practiced in the USA.  We look at thousands of small bell holes or short sections.  I assert that these pipelines are old; at some point you will have to look at them.  Why not now? Why let them continue to leak or, in the worst case, blow up.  Let’s get the best of both worlds- removal of coatings by WaterJetting as the pre-cleaning, followed by clean abrasive blasting.  Slowly but surely this equipment [ that originated in Canada] and technique migrated to Canada for the Trans Canadian Pipeline, and to Russia and Europe.  My co-author Sidney Taylor spends most of his time overseas, not in the USA.

The university professors spoke about how you can see inhibitors line up on the surface, and what makes them break down, or what is the beginning of corrosion, and how to stop it.  AC Corrosion was presented along with Cathodic Disbondment.  The techniques of pigging, treatment with biocides, and maintenance of rectifiers and transducers- what is the best potential to maintain;  the theft of buried copper strips for anodic protection, all came under discussion as well as lots of comments about PHMSA auditing and regulation.


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