Reliability analysis has become widely used as a method of accounting for uncertainty in the sizing of metal loss features in pipeline integrity management programs. As inline inspection (ILI) technology for crack detection becomes more widely available, the opportunity to use reliability methods in a manner similar to that already adopted for metal loss features presents itself. Nevertheless, the technical challenges to the application of reliability analysis of cracks are distinct from those that are relevant to the reliability analysis of metal loss features. Calculating the time-dependent threat of failure due to fatigue or corrosion fatigue must address different parameters than it would for metal loss features, and consequently this presents new challenges in developing statistical analysis tools. Such challenges include predicting operational pressure cycling, accounting for uncertainty in ILI crack sizing, and characterizing crack growth behaviour type. This paper provides an overview of some important parameters to be considered in reliability-based fatigue or corrosion fatigue analysis with some examples of how they have been addressed in work to date by Dynamic Risk Assessment Systems, Inc.

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