This paper describes experiences with an improved equation of state (EOS) for ethylene for an existing real time pipeline model. The main scope of the model is leak detection, batch, contaminant and pig tracking. Altogether the pipeline model includes transportation of batched liquid ethylene, ethane, propane, butane and natural gas liquids (NGL). The pipeline is approximately 1900 miles miles long and includes laterals, 33 pump stations, 9 injection/delivery stations and 5 propane terminals. Originally the model used a BWRS EOS for all the above products. At that time a number of false leak alarms were experienced related to pipeline sections containing ethylene. A case study was carried out, specifically for ethylene, to investigate the effect of replacing the BWRS EOS with a modified Helmholtz EOS. The study showed that replacing the EOS on average would improve determination of the ethylene densities by 1.6%–5.6% with an expected reduction in the alarm rate for ethylene cases by approximately 50%. As a result the modified Helmholtz EOS was implemented in the real time model. Results are presented to show the practical experience with the new EOS gained over the last years.

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