In this unique case, the challenging assets are two 6” feeder lines that supply fuel to airplanes at the Geneva Airport through a hydrant system from a tank farm. This system is largely considered unpiggable due to low points where water is separated and removed on a weekly basis. The last section of pipe going to the tanks, located on the airport grounds, is located in close proximity to airplanes. Furthermore, these lines cross airport taxi lanes, which consist of extremely thick concrete. These pipelines’ integrity must be assessed in order to establish an integrity management plan and avoid the costly construction associated with the replacement of these feeder lines.
The objective of the inspection of these assets was to identify the integrity status of the pipeline by measuring internal and external corrosion. The challenges for this case were abundant, including the following factors:
- No traps were available
- Only one point of access was feasible
- Limited negotiability due to the presence of miter bends
In addition to these unique pipeline traits, the customer required a series of boundary conditions to be met, including; no interference with airport operations, no contamination of product, no daytime-hour access on site, and full inspection coverage was required.
ROSEN solution officers worked closely with the customer to tailor a solution package that would allow for the successful inspection of these feeder lines. Technical clarifications resulted in an agreement to use a medium propelled bidirectional UT inspection system. The pipeline was also isolated from the system, as jet fuel supply was guaranteed via the second parallel line. The solution package consisted of a variety of adaptations, including:
- The installation of a temporary trap
- System tracking as the tool passed critical installations
- Propulsion method created by using pumps from the hydrant system
- A loop installed at the tank farm allowing the tool to be propelled back using the pumps from the hydrant system
- Flow controlled through a reduced diameter ball valve and flow meter
ROSEN solutions officers had recently completed the development of the world’s shortest 6” bidirectional UT inspection system, and this was a great opportunity for its debut. The project was executed within the agreed time frame and without any accidents or incidents. Additionally, the quality of the data collected met the expectations of the customer.
The tailored approach required minimal construction, with only minor temporary pipe modifications required. In addition, tool launching and receiving were done by hand, avoiding the need for equipment. Furthermore, no digs were required.
Complete data sets allowed for a full understanding of the pipeline condition and the ability to take measures for its integrity management. This ensures compliance with safety standards and regulations.
The bidirectional approach ensures fail-safe measures were taken into consideration, and the tool could be reversed at any time if needed. Securing the safety of the asset, operators, and surrounding environment.