Although composite materials are used to repair and reinforce a variety of anomalies in high pressure transmission gas and liquid pipelines, there continues to be widespread debate regarding what constitutes a long-term composite repair. The United States regulations require that composite repairs must be able to permanently restore the serviceability of the repaired pipeline, while in contrast the Canadian regulations take a more prescriptive approach by integrating the ASME PCC-2 and ISO 24817 composite repair standards along with a requirement for establishing a 50-year design life.
In this paper the author provides a framework for what should be considered in qualifying a composite repair system for long-term performance by focusing on the critical technical aspects associated with a sound composite repair. The presentation includes a discussion on establishing an appropriate composite design stress using the existing standards, using full-scale testing to ensure that stresses in the repair do not exceed the designated composite design stresses, and guidance for operators in how to properly integrate their pipeline operating conditions to establish a design life. By implementing the recommendations presented in this paper, operators will be equipped with a resource for objectively evaluating the composite repair systems used to repair their pipeline systems.