Piping reliability is critical to oil production, oil sands processing, refineries, power plants, pulp and paper mills, and various other industries. Corrosion, including Microbiologically Influenced Corrosion (MIC), is a primary degradation mechanism in pipelines. MIC of pipeline materials has been shown to occur in virtually all water systems and has caused expensive unplanned outages, the need for local repairs, and, in some cases, complete system replacement. The control of biofilm on surfaces is the most effective tool for mitigating MIC. Effective monitoring for biofilms also helps to avoid the overuse of oxidizing biocides. Biocide overdosing will increase corrosion and can produce catastrophic corrosion effects. Optimized treatments require accurate, on-line monitoring of biofilm activity. Plant experience with an electrochemical biofilm sensor with integrated data acquisition and data analysis capabilities for monitoring biofilm activity on metallic surfaces and the use of that tool for optimizing biocide additions in a variety of environments is described.

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