A comprehensive and integrated suite of computer software routines has been developed to simulate the flow of liquids in pipelines. The fluid properties module accommodates Newtonian and non-Newtonian liquids or mixtures including corrections for changes in properties with temperature and pressure. The hydraulic model calculates pressure drop in single or looped pipelines based on the diameter, route (length) and profile data provided. For multi-product pipelines the hydraulics module estimates energy loss for any sequence of batches given the size and fluid properties of each batch, and the velocity in the pipeline. When the characteristics of existing or proposed pipeline pumps are included, location and size of pumps can be optimized. The effect of heat loss on pressure drop is predicted by invoking the module which calculates the fluid temperature profile based on operating conditions, fluid properties, pipe and insulation conductivity and soil heat transfer data. Modules, created to simulate heater or cooler operations, can be incorporated to compensate for changes in temperature. Input data and calculated results can be presented in a format customized by the user.
The simulation software has been successfully applied to multi-product, fuel oil, and non-Newtonian emulsion pipelines. The simulation and operation of a refinery products pipeline for the transportation of propane, butane, gasoline, jet and diesel batches will be discussed. The impact of high vapour pressure batches (i.e., propane and butane) on the operation of the pipeline and on the upstream and downstream facilities will be examined in detail.