Reasons for Pipeline Pigging
Pipeline Pigging operation is performed to:
- Maintain a reliable and acceptable performance of the pipeline in terms of safety and product delivery at an economical cost.
- Provide a defined margin of safety for operating the pipeline at its designated pressure.
- Provide timely information on all pipeline defects such that repairs can be carried out according to a managed schedule.
There are several kinds of flaws and defects in pipelines that can lead to pipeline failure, the main families being;
- Metal loss
- Cracks or crack-like defects
- Laminations and other mid-wall defects
- Geometric anomalies
There are basically three reasons to pig a pipeline
- To separate dissimilar products.
- To remove undesirable materials.
- To perform internal cleaning, inspections, and maintenance.
WHY IS THE PIPELINE UNPIGGABLE?
Understanding the reason why a pipeline is not piggable is essential to identify and engineer an appropriate solution. We can perform a holistic review of the pipeline design, construction, and operational data to determine how piggable and hence identify any factors that would prevent pigging or pose a significant risk to a successful pig run. Concerns regarding pipeline piggability include but are not limited to the following:
- No pig traps
- Restricted access
- Pipeline fittings (i.e tye or wye)
- Bore restrictions
- Diameter or wall thickness changes
- Operational conditions
CAN THE PIPELINE BE MADE PIGGABLE?
After determining if a pipeline is piggable, a range of solutions can be identified to enable pipeline pigging and establish the technical and financial feasibility. These solutions may include:
- Pipeline modification
- Temporary piping and pig traps
- Bidirectional pigging
- Pig design modification
- Use of non-conventional inspection technologies
HOW AND WHEN TO PIG?
At Cainergy we can offer a range of operational support when it comes to the planning and execution of pipeline pigging projects, including full project management service or discrete engineering scopes, including;
- Pig design review
- Development of pigging strategy
- Inspection technology review
- Pigging risk assessments
- Contingency planning
- Development of maintenance requirements for pipeline facilities prior to pigging
- Development of pigging procedures