The safety and long-term performance of a pipeline can be compromised significantly by geometrical damage such as dents, wrinkles, bulges, ovalization and roof topping. Manufacturing, construction, or external factors during operation such as accidental third-party damage or external loading (e.g. landslides) cause geometric damage.
Deformation can threaten pipeline integrity, particularly when it is combined with other anomalies like gouges, corrosion or weld flaws.
In fact, damage due to external interference remains one of the main causes of pipeline failures globally. Deformation features such as wrinkles or buckles may be associated with areas of high bending strain and pipeline movement, which can be identified with pipeline mapping systems. Severe pipeline deformation can also result in flow restrictions or prevent the passage of pipeline cleaning and inspection tools.
Therefore, having a reliable pipeline deformation management strategy that covers the identification, sizing, assessment, and repair of geometric damage is critical for all pipeline operators.
The most effective way to assess changes in shape is to approach deformation management with a “big picture” mindset. The PETROTECH Company believes that best way to do this is by tackling the challenge from all angles; combining the most advanced pipeline deformation inspection solutions, the knowledge of subject-matter experts and industry best practices gives operators the information they need to make the best possible integrity management decisions. PETROTECH supports operators beyond short-term decision-making and provides management plans and training to enable them to take the right maintenance actions at the right time in order to extend the life, safety and performance of their pipelines.