Liquids pipelines undergo pressure cycling as part of normal operations. The source of these fluctuations can be complex, but can include line start-stop during normal pipeline operations, batch pigs by-passing pump stations, product injection or delivery, and unexpected line shut-down events. One of the factors that govern potential growth of flaws by pressure cycle induced fatigue is operational pressure cycles. The severity of these pressure cycles can affect both the need and timing for an integrity assessment. A Pressure Cycling Monitoring (PCM) program was initiated at Enbridge Pipelines Inc. (Enbridge) to monitor the Pressure Cycling Severity (PCS) change with time during line operations. The PCM program has many purposes, but primary focus is to ensure the continued validity of the integrity assessment interval and for early identification of notable changes in operations resulting in fatigue damage. In conducting the PCM program, an estimated fatigue life based on one month or one quarter period of operations is plotted on the PCM graph. The estimated fatigue life is obtained by conducting fatigue analysis using Paris Law equation, a flaw with dimensions proportional to the pipe wall thickness and the outer diameter, and the operating pressure data queried from Enbridge SCADA system. This standardized estimated fatigue life calculation is a measure of the PCS. Trends in PCS overtime can potentially indicate the crack threat susceptibility the integrity assessment interval should be updated. Two examples observed on pipeline segments within Enbridge pipeline system are provided that show the PCS change over time. Conclusions are drawn for the PCM program thereafter.
- International Petroleum Technology Institute and the Pipeline Division
Pressure Cycling Monitoring Helps Ensure the Integrity of Energy Pipelines
Song, P, Lawrence, D, Keane, S, Ironside, S, & Sutton, A. "Pressure Cycling Monitoring Helps Ensure the Integrity of Energy Pipelines." Proceedings of the 2010 8th International Pipeline Conference. 2010 8th International Pipeline Conference, Volume 1. Calgary, Alberta, Canada. September 27–October 1, 2010. pp. 583-587. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/IPC2010-31394
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