Gas pipeline systems are not necessarily designed and constructed in such a way that modern inline inspection methods can be used successfully. This applies in particular to older lines constructed around the second half of the last century. The consequences of this are expensive problems for many pipeline operators because the mechanical configurations of many pipelines deem it impossible to use common inspection solutions. These pipelines are challenging because individual solutions have to be found to ensure the functionality of the lines.
Another factor that creates challenging pipelines is the idea of rationalization, which many operators see as imperative in their present and future actions. Merging different pipeline segments for cost-effectiveness, resulting in multi-diameter systems, leads to additional levels of difficulties in terms of inspecting the pipelines and ensuring their operational safety.
A third important source of influence for challenging pipelines are the conditions associated with a particular pipeline. Difficult soils, rock formations, low pressure levels or similar complications influence the inspection possibilities and require technology suppliers to deliver innovative solutions to complex challenges.
In this issue of Pipeline Technology Journal we present a multitude of interesting case studies regarding challenging pipelines and their safe and profitable operation. However, ptj is not the only platform that present solutions in this respect. The annually Pipeline Technology Conference (ptc) displays solutions for challenging pipelines too.
The inspection of challenging pipelines is only at the beginning of its development. Pipeline Technology Conference (ptc) and Pipeline Technology Journal (ptj) are international platforms where developments can be discussed.
Dr. Klaus Ritter,
President EITEP Institut
Editior in Chef ptj