Due to an ever increasing endeavor for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades, with a gradually increasing demand for energy world-wide and despite a society which is becoming more and more civilized and industrialized, the actual challenge in handling this problem is intensified by decreasing sources of energy, a global economic recession as well as energy market instabilities.
Replacing fossil energy sources such as oil with alternative energy concepts is at best difficult because of the high initial investment costs needed installing alternative energy concepts.
As an answer to the problems faced, the industry offers several solutions ranging from advanced technologies with a high efficiency ratio such as fuel cell and hydrogen energy, up to and including alternative new or renewable energy sources such as solar, hydro and wind power.
One of the major solutions for the transitional period to economical and reliable renewable energies is considered to be the use of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
To accommodate for these requirements, Salzgitter Mannesmann Line Pipe has continuously developed highly sophisticated materials in the form of bainitic pipes for the transportation of gaseous or liquefied medium at ultra-low temperatures.
In the first part of this presentation paper the process route as well as the material and pipe properties will be shown and explained. In cooperation with our construction partner Fernwaerme-Technik (FW), the bainitic pipes were used to construct a special multi-pipe system for the conveyance of liquefied natural gas (LNG) at a temperature of −162 °C. The pipe system as well as results from the field testing is presented below and tests have been conducted on this system for three years using liquid nitrogen. It can be shown, that not only the low temperature pipe material requirements for transportation of LNG are fulfilled, moreover it offers further potential as an alternative for the replacement of expensive austenitic steels applied at temperatures down to −196°C.