The increasing demand for natural gas will further influence the type of its transportation in the future, both from the strategic and economic point of view. Long-distance pipelines are a safe and economic means to transport the gas from production sites to end users. High-strength steels in grade X80 are nowadays state of the art. Grade X100 was recently developed but not yet utilised. The present-day technical limitations on the production of X120 line pipe namely the steel composition, the pipe forming and the welding are addressed in this paper. Production test results on X120 pipes are presented to describe the materials properties. A low carbon and low PCM steel with VNbTiB microalloying concept is used. In the plate rolling the main attention is turned to the heavy accelerated cooling. The large spring back that occurs during the U-forming step of the UOE process is one of the most complex aspects in forming X120. To handle this aspect FEM calculations were used to modify the forming parameters and to optimise the shape of the U-press tool. For optimising the existing welding procedure with respect to an avoidance of HAZ softening, a low heat input welding technology and new welding consumables were developed.

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