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DESIGN CRITERIA

TRANSPORT AND GATHERING PIPELINES

INSPECTIONS WITH INTELLIGENT PIG

14059.PLI.COR.PRG

Rev. 0

March 1998

0 Emission CORM CORM CORM March 98


REV. DESCRIPTION COMP. VERIF. APPR. DATE
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14059.PLI.COR.PRG
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FOREWORD

Rev. 0 No. Sheets 28


March 1998
Emission

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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CONTENT

1 GENERAL

1.1 Scope
1.2 Normative references
1.2.1 European normative references
1.2.2 Normative references of ISO, IEC and national organizations
1.2.3 Normative references of other organizations
1.2.4 Internal normative references

1.3 Definitions

2 PURPOSES OF INTELLIGENT PIG INSPECTION

2.1 Pipeline integrity assessment


2.2 Corrosion monitoring

3 INTELLIGENT PIG TYPES

3.1 Classification of intelligent pigs


3.2 Magnetic flux pigs
3.3 Ultrasonic Pigs
3.4 Eddy Current Pigs

4 GUIDELINES ON INTELLIGENT PIG TYPE SELECTION

4.1 Corrosion morphology


4.2 Fluid type
4.3 Pipe geometry
4.3.1 Diameter
4.3.2 Curves
4.3.3 Pipeline thickness

4.4 Purpose of the inspection


4.5 Pipeline location
4.6 Extraneous matters in the pipeline
4.7 Comparison between the instruments

5 RESULTS OF THE INSPECTION

5.1 Results
5.2 Interpretation of results

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6 CRITERIA FOR INTELLIGENT PIG INSPECTION

6.1 Probabilistic approach to intelligent pig inspections


6.2 Pipeline integrity assessment
6.2.1 Evaluation parameters
6.2.2 Criteria

6.3 Monitoring of corrosion - New pipelines


6.3.1 Evaluation parameters
6.3.2 Criteria

6.4 Monitoring of corrosion. In-service pipelines

7 GUIDELINES FOR THE VERIFICATION OF INSPECTION


FEASIBILITY

7.1 Verification criteria

8 DOCUMENTATION

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1 GENERAL

1.1 Scope

This document provides criteria for intelligent pig inspections of carbon and low
alloy steel pipelines for liquid and gas hydrocarbons, with particular attention to
the aspects related to corrosion, internal and external.

In this document, as intelligent pig is intended a device of any kind able to move
freely inside a pipeline pushed by the transported fluid, suitable to execute
measurements of thickness loss due to corrosion and to detect existing defects of
the pipe. This document does not cover the so called “cable-operated intelligent
pigs” or, in general, other methods for the internal inspection of pipelines.

The aims of this document are the followings:


– to identify the scope of the inspection;
– to illustrate the features of various types of available devices and their
advantages and drawbacks;
– to provide guidelines to select the type of instrument related with the scope of
the inspection;
– to provide guidelines for the planning of inspections with intelligent pigs.

Furthermore, requirements for the inspectionability of pipelines are mentioned.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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1.2 Normative references

1.2.1 European normative references

No European normative references exist on the argument of this specification.

1.2.2 Normative references of ISO, IEC and national organizations

ISO 8044 “Corrosion of Metals and Alloys - Vocabulary”

1.2.3 Normative references of other organizations

ASME B31G “Manual for Determining the Remaining Strength of


Corroded Pipelines”

ASME B31.4 Pipeline Transportation Systems for Liquid


Hydrocarbons and Other Liquids

ASME B31.8 Gas Transmission and Distribution Piping Systems

EFC N° 16 Guidelines on Material Requirements for Carbon and


Low Alloy Steels for H2S Containing Oil and
Gasfield Service”. The Institute of Materials

NACE MR0175 “Sulphide Stress Cracking Resistant Metallic


Materials for Oilfield Equipment”

NACE RP0175 Control of Internal Corrosion in Steel Pipelines and


Piping Systems

NACE RP0775 “Preparation and Installation of Corrosion Coupons


and Interpretation of Test Data in Oil Production
Practice”

1.2.4 Internal normative references

06806.PLI.MEC.SPC. “Modalità di esecuzione del “Pigging” di condotte


on-shore”

06805.SLI.OFF.SPC. “Modalità di esecuzione del “Pigging” di condotte


offshore”

02555.VAR.COR.PRG. “Internal Corrosion. Corrosion Parameters and


Classification of the Fluids”

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This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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1.3 Definitions

Chloride Stress Corrosion Cracking - CSCC


Formation of cracks caused by stress corrosion in a water and chloride ions
containing environments (02555.VAR.COR.PRG).

Corrosion
Physicochemical interaction between a metal and its environment that results in
changes in the properties of the metal and which may often lead to impairment of
the function of the metal, the environment, or the technical system of which these
form a part (ISO 8044).

Corrosion product
Substance formed as a result of corrosion (ISO 8044).

Corrosivity
Ability of an environment to cause corrosion in a given corrosion system (ISO
8044).

Corrosivity class
It is an attribute conventionally assigned to each type of fluid in order to point out
the most significant corrosivity features. For the fluid designated: liquid
hydrocarbons and multiphase (I.L.), gas hydrocarbons and gas with condensates
(I.G.), the corrosivity classes are defined as follows (02555.VAR.COR.PRG):
− N. non containing CO2 and H2S
− C. containing CO2
− S. containing H2S
− CS. containing CO2 and H2S.

Crevice Corrosion
Corrosion associated with, and taking place in, or immediately around, a narrow
aperture or clearance (ISO 8044).

Defects
Defects include: geometric anomalies of the pipe, with a purely mechanical origin
or pre-existent (for instance indents, folds, ovalities); geometric anomalies or
porosities associated with welds, damages to the pipe caused by corrosion (for
instance losses of metal); cracks.

Dummy tool
A device that simulates, for dimensions and mechanical features, an intelligent pig.
Before inspection, it is launched with the following scopes:
– to verify the feasibility of the inspection;
– to clean the pipe from deposits or corrosion products that could interfere with
the measurement.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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Hydrogen Induced Cracking - HIC


A type of “stepwise cracking” in steel for pipes or laminated products; cracks on
the same plane have the tendency to join with cracks in near levels forming steps
through the metallic wall, reducing its mechanical resistance
(02555.VAR.COR.PRG).

Inspection
A process carried out through measurements, controls, tests or other methods fit
to determine the state or the conditions of a pipe with respect to prescribed
standards.

Pipeline integrity
The condition of a pipeline, with respect to its capability of containing and
transporting the fluid, defined in terms of full functionality.

Intelligent pig
A pig able to notice existing defects of the pipe due to corrosion through
measurements of thickness.

Maximum Operating Pressure (MOP)


It is the maximum operating pressure at which a pipe, or a part of it, can be
operated.

Pig
A device able to move freely inside a pipe pushed by the fluid it transports.

Pitting Corrosion
Corrosion resulting in pits, i.e. cavities extending from the surface into the metal
(ISO 8044).

Predicted corrosion rate


It is the corrosion rate, usually expressed quantitatively (in mm/y) and/or
qualitatively (with an assessment), determined: (a) after the corrosion study,
applying all the available knowledge and tools; (b) through laboratory tests,
simulating the real conditions; (c) on the basis of field corrosion monitoring data
applicable to the case under study (02555.VAR.COR.PRG).

Sour conditions
Conditions, usually with H2S presence, that cause Sulphide Stress Cracking
occurrence in susceptible materials (NACE MR0175).

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Stress Corrosion Cracking - SCC


A process resulting form the combined action of corrosion and tension mechanical
solicitation due to residual or applied stresses; it causes the formation of surface
stress corrosion cracks; cracks are usually perpendicular to stress direction
(02555.VAR.COR.PRG).

Sulphide Stress Cracking - SSC


Formation of cracks caused by stress corrosion, with a significant contribution of
H2S as a corroding agent (02555.VAR.COR.PRG).

Type of fluid
In the present document the following types of fluid are considered: liquid
hydrocarbons (I.L.); gas hydrocarbons and gas with condensates (I.G.).

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
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2 PURPOSES OF INTELLIGENT PIG INSPECTION

The inspection of a pipeline with an intelligent pig usually has one of the following
purposes:
– to assess the integrity of the pipeline;
– to monitor the internal and external corrosion conditions of the pipeline.

The selection of the most suitable type of intelligent pig and the decision criteria to
perform the inspection are also related with intelligent pig inspection purpose.

2.1 Pipeline integrity assessment

The inspection with intelligent pig of pipelines for integrity assessment is


performed to check that there are no defects able to compromise its correct
service. It may be carried out at any time during the operating life and repeated
periodically.

The inspection with intelligent pig for integrity assessment finds its most significant
application with in-service pipeline. In comparison with the traditional hydraulic
test, the inspection with intelligent pig offers the following advantages:
– interruption of production is not required;
– information are provided about the seriousness of the defects. The hydraulic test
does not give information about the level of pipe defectiveness; moreover, even
if the result of the test is positive, the test itself could have induced a sub-critical
growth of existing defects;
– it locates the position of the defects.

The following steps are foreseen for the pipeline integrity assessment:
– inspection with intelligent pig for existing defects survey;
– elaboration of the results in order to evaluate their acceptability.

The elaboration of the results, that is beyond the scopes of this document, may be
conducted, for example, in accordance with the ASME B31G standard. It assesses
the seriousness of the defects in relation to their depth, length and to the Maximum
Operating Pressure (MOP) of the pipeline.

On the basis of the results of the inspection and their subsequent elaboration, it is
possible, for example, to recalculate the MOP and, if necessary, to downgrade the
pipeline.

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2.2 Corrosion monitoring

In the present document, corrosion monitoring is intended as the intelligent pig


inspection of a pipeline in order to estimate the average corrosion rate.

The most significant application of corrosion monitoring with intelligent pig


inspection regards the case of new pipelines transporting a corrosive fluid, in order
to assess, in the early operating steps, that the methods adopted to mitigate
corrosion are really suitable.

The corrosion monitoring with intelligent pig requires at least two subsequent
inspections:
– a first inspection, to be performed just after the pipe has been laid, or during the
early operating phases, establishes the reference inspection;
– subsequent inspections, conducted after a period of time variable from case to
case, usually not less than one year, allow, by means of a comparison with the
reference inspection, to determine the average corrosion rate in the positions
where defects have been found.

The monitoring of corrosion requires instruments able to detect small thickness


losses due to corrosion and with a good level of measurements repeatability (± 0.5
mm for the measurement of thickness losses) so that it is possible to use the results
of at least two inspections conducted in different times to evaluate the average rate
of corrosion in the period.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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3 INTELLIGENT PIG TYPES

3.1 Classification of intelligent pigs

On the basis of the method of measurement and of the level of resolution of the
measurements it is possible to classify intelligent pigs, presently available, in four
classes:
– low performance magnetic flux pigs;
– high performance magnetic flux pigs;
– ultrasonic pigs;
– eddy current pigs.

New types of intelligent pigs, working with ultrasonic probes, have been recently
developed for the location of cracks; however, they are not covered in this
document because still in a validation phase.

3.2 Magnetic flux pigs

Magnetic flux pigs are equipped with big magnets used to induce, in axial
direction, a magnetic field on the pipe walls. In presence of anomalies in the wall
thickness, for example a corrosion pit, the magnetic field is perturbed and its flux is
deflected. By recording the changes of the flux density dispersed along the pipeline
it is possible to go back to existing anomalies.

The measurement of residual thickness is obtained through a comparison of


collected signals with those produced by a standard defect and so is an indirect
measurement.

The magnetic field may be produced by means of electromagnets or permanent


magnets. The latter, compared to the first, are characterised by a low level of
energy consumption and are suggested for the inspection of very long pipelines.

To detect all existing defects, the magnetic field has to completely saturate the wall
of the pipe. This, considering the limitations imposed by the pipeline on the
maximum dimensions of the magnet, limits the use to pipelines with wall thickness
below a threshold value, decreasing with the rise of the pipe diameter.

For pipelines with a diameter greater than 16” (400 mm) the limit thickness of the
tube is about 20 mm; for pipes with smaller diameters the diameter/thickness ratio
is assumed as reference parameter and it must be greater than 20.

Usually, the measurement of dispersed flux density is performed with induction coil
probes, having the advantages of being sensitive, temperature invariant and with
low level of energy consumption.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
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Magnetic flux pigs are divided in high and low performance pigs. The main
differentiating factor is the ability of high performance magnetic flux pigs to
distinguish between external and internal defects. In order to do this, probes for the
detection of internal defects employ the eddy current technology or Hall effect
probes. The latter, by measuring the absolute value of magnetic fields (while the
traditional method measures the flux gradient), allow also the measurement of the
average residual thickness.

Magnetic flux pigs may be used without distinction for pipelines transporting oil or
gas.

Generally, they detect localised corrosion attacks better than uniform ones.

Magnetic flux pigs have a low ability to detect, and to correctly evaluate the
dimensions of defects situated by or near (up to a few centimetres) girth welds and
curves.

They are presently available for pipes with a diameter greater or equal to 6” (152
mm) and are compatible with curves whose minimum radius is 3 times the external
diameter of the pipe.

3.3 Ultrasonic Pigs

Ultrasonic pigs are instruments equipped with ultrasonic transducers positioned at


a fixed distance from the wall of the pipe. The transducers emit sonic impulses
perpendicular to the pipe walls that are reflected partially by the inner wall and
partially by the external wall. The measurement of the time interval between the
two sound echoes allows to go back directly, with good repeatability and high
reliability, to the measure of the thickness. However, the two echoes cannot be
distinguished if the residual thickness is too small or the thickness of the pipe is less
than a limit value. Actually with these devices it is possible to inspect pipes with a
thickness greater than 4 mm and smaller than 50 mm.

Ultrasonic pigs need, in order to work, the presence of a liquid phase between the
transducers and the wall of the pipe. With regard to this it should be noticed that
the presence of deposits (for example paraffin) hinders the acquisition of readings.
This imposes that:
– in case of pipelines transporting gas, the pigs has to be launched inside a liquid
slug;
– before conducting an inspection an accurate cleaning of the pipeline has to be
carried out.

Presently, they offer the chance to evaluate, besides conventional defects like
thickness losses, also internal defects of the material like lamination cracks,
provided they exceed a minimum dimension (20 mm).

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Devices are available on the market for pipelines with a diameter greater or equal
to 6” (152 mm), compatible with curves whose minimum radius is 3 times the
external diameter of the pipe.

3.4 Eddy Current Pigs

Eddy current pigs are based on the measurement of the current induced in the walls
of the pipe by a magnetic field, varying in time according to a sinusoidal law,
produced by suitable magnetisation circuits mounted on the pig itself.

The small dimension of these devices allows to inspect pipes with a diameter of 3”
(76 mm) and with curves up to 95°, with a radius of curvature equal to 1.5 times
the external diameter of the pipe. Nevertheless these devices may be used only with
a pipe thickness between 3.2 and 7.1 mm, and are able to give only an absolute
measurement of residual thickness, with no distinction between external and
internal corrosion.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.
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4 GUIDELINES ON INTELLIGENT PIG TYPE SELECTION

The selection of the optimal method for the inspection of a pipe is based on the
comparison between the performances of the devices (feature and limitations) and
the requirements of the inspection in connection with functional, security and
economic factors. The most important aspects to be considered are:
– the expected corrosion morphology;
– the fluid type;
– the pipe geometry;
– the purpose of the inspection;
– the location of the pipe;
– the presence of extraneous matter within the pipe.

4.1 Corrosion morphology

Corrosion forms may be divided into the following fundamental types, according to
the attack morphology:

General corrosion: it occurs on the whole surface of the metal in contact with the
environment; it can be uniform, with a generalised and regular loss of metal on the
exposed surface, or non uniform, with corrosion penetration varying from area to
area.

The following classes may be used to express the penetration rate of general
corrosion forms (internal normative reference 02555.VAR.COR.PRG):
– negligible: < 50 µm/y
– low: < 50 ÷ 100 µm/y
– moderate: 100 ÷ 500 µm/y
– severe: 500 ÷ 1000 µm/y
– very severe: > 1000 µm/y

This classification, applicable to evaluate the corrosion rate expected during the
design or observed on operating structures, is different from the one proposed by
NACE RP0775. The latter, more conservative, is oriented at the evaluation of
corrosion as measured by monitoring systems, particularly by weight loss coupons.

Localised corrosion: it occurs on a limited portion of surface exposed to the


environment. The morphology of localised corrosion changes considerably,
depending on material and environment. The entity of damage does not depend on
the total quantity of oxidised metal.

Ultrasonic pigs are suitable to detect general corrosion attacks. Magnetic flux pigs,
on the contrary, are more sensitive to localised defects.

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Eddy current pigs provide the measurement of residual thickness, with no


distinction between external and internal corrosion, and are suitable to detect
general corrosion.

4.2 Fluid type

Ultrasonic pigs need the presence of a liquid phase to allow an adequate contact
between the probe and the metallic wall. Therefore, the launch of pigs into
pipelines transporting gas or multiphase systems has to be conducted within a
liquid slug.

If water is employed as circulation liquid for the pig, possible corrosive effects of
the water shall be adequately prevented, for example by treating it with corrosion
inhibitors or by having the inspection followed by circulation of a slug of corrosion
inhibitor.

In case of H2S containing fluids (“sour” conditions), all metallic components of the
pig shall comply with the requirements of NACE MR0175.

4.3 Pipe geometry

The pipeline geometry shall be carefully considered in order to avoid block risk of
the intelligent pig inside.

The most important parameter to be taken into account are:


– the diameter and its internal variations;
– curves, with special regard to their angular width and radius of curvature;
– the pipe wall thickness.

4.3.1 Diameter

Pipelines with a diameter between 3” (76 mm) and 6” (152 mm) can be inspected
only with eddy current pigs.

Pipelines with a diameter greater than 6” (152 mm) can be inspected with every
type of intelligent pigs.

The uniformity of the pipelines internal diameter shall be carefully considered.


Another important factor are the discontinuities in correspondence of welds.

The Contractor shall verify, in each occasion, the feasibility of the inspection in
connection with the extent and the type of restrictions existing along the pipeline.

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4.3.2 Curves

Generally it is possible to inspect pipelines whose curves have a radius greater


than 3 times the external diameter and angular width smaller than 90°.

For pipelines with curves of a smaller radius, the inspection can be conducted with
suitably modified devices. The Contractor shall verify, in this cases, the feasibility
of the inspection..

4.3.3 Pipeline thickness

Selection among various types of available intelligent pigs depends on the wall
thickness of the pipeline to inspect.

It is possible to employ eddy current pigs with pipelines whose thickness is


between 3.2 and 7.1 mm.

It is possible to employ magnetic flux pigs with pipelines whose thickness is below
a limit value, depending on the pipe diameter. Generally, with diameters greater
than 16” (400 mm) the limit thickness of the pipe is 20 mm; with diameter smaller
than 16” (400 mm) it is calculated with the following relationship:

Th_max = D/20

where:
Th_max: maximum inspectionable thickness with a magnetic flux pig, in mm
D: nominal diameter of the pipe, in mm

It is possible to employ ultrasonic pigs with pipes whose thickness is between 4


and 50 mm.

4.4 Purpose of the inspection

Depending on the specific purpose of the inspection, different requirements for the
inspection tool are needed with respect to the quality of the readings. Particularly,
for pipeline integrity assessment, tools shall be employed suitable to detect all
defects with a depth greater than a minimum threshold (as defined for instance by
ASME B31G); therefore fairly sensitive and accurate measuring devices are
required; on the contrary, to monitor corrosion it is necessary to detect all
thickness losses with accuracy.

Tools based on deviated magnetic flux method are better suited to answer the
requisites of pipeline integrity assessment, while ultrasonic tools are recommended,
in addition to integrity assessment, also for corrosion monitoring.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
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In case of corrosion monitoring, inspections subsequent to the first shall be carried


out using the same type of device employed in the first one.

4.5 Pipeline location

High precision and sensitivity are recommended for the inspection of sealines. For
buried pipelines, the selection of the inspection method is primarily based on
economic criteria and therefore the preferred options are those one that minimise
the inspection costs and the subsequent verification through sample excavations.

4.6 Extraneous matters in the pipeline

Extraneous matters in the pipeline to inspect may block the passage of the pig,
piling up in front of the tool itself, and cause reading problems. Their removal is
therefore one of the most important operations for the preparation of the
inspection.

Extraneous materials may include:


– steel objects and scrap: for example welding electrodes;
– gross fragments;
– fine particles: for example sand;
– paraffins;
– corrosion products;
– scales.

The accuracy level required for the cleaning of the pipe also depends on the type of
tool.

Removal of steel scrap, performed in the preliminary phase of the inspection using
magnetic cleaning pigs, is especially important for magnetic flux and eddy current
pigs.

Ultrasonic pigs require a more accurate cleaning, in particular the removal of


deposits, to allow the direct contact between the pipe wall and the measuring
probes.

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Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
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4.7 Comparison between the instruments

Table 1 shows the most relevant features of the tools considered in this document.

Tab. 1 - Comparison between the instruments

Type of Pig low performance high performance ultrasounds eddy current


magnetic flux magnetic flux
Parameter
Purpose of the integrity integrity monitoring integrity
inspection assessment assessment (integrity assessment
assessment)
(monitoring)
Corrosion general localised (general) general general
morphology (localised)
Defects detection internal internal/external internal/external (residual
thickness)
Fluid type all all all1 all
Max. temperature 50 °C 50 °C 50 °C 40 °C
Min. temperature z 4 °C 4 °C 4 °C
Max. pressure 150 bar 150 bar 120 bar 50 bar
Min. diameter 152 mm (6”) 152 mm (6”) 152 mm (6”) 76 mm (3”)
Max. thickness 20 mm 20 mm min. 4 mm min. 3.2 mm
D/Th > 20 D/Th > 20 max. 40 mm max. 7.1 mm
Recommended 1 m/s 1 m/s 1 m/s 0.25 m/s
speed
Minimum speed 0.3 m/s 0.3 m/s 0.8 m/s
Maximum speed 3 m/s 3 m/s 2 m/s
Min. curvature 3×D 3×D 3×D 1.5 × D
radius
Max. curve angle 90 ° 90 ° 90 ° 95 °
Required cleaning medium medium high medium
Type of intrusive intrusive intrusive intrusive
measurement indirect indirect direct indirect
1
The launch of a liquid slug is required in the case of gas

Legend: D = External diameter


Th = Thickness

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5 RESULTS OF THE INSPECTION

5.1 Results

The Contractor is responsible to issue the data collected in the inspection in the
form of a file stored on a magnetic computer support (floppy disk or equivalent).

The Contractor is also responsible for the supplying of a document that gathers and
highlights:
– all data regarding the inspection;
– all detected anomalies;
– the distinction between the signals related to normal features of the pipe or its
fittings (welds, joints, flanges, valves) and the ones related to corrosion defects
detected in the inspection;
– the statistical distribution of corrosion defects with respect to their depth;
– the statistical distribution of corrosion defects with respect to their length;
– the statistical distribution of the number of corrosion defects for linear kilometre
of pipe;
– the interpretation of results with the information of the confidence intervals for
the results obtained.

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5.2 Interpretation of results

The interpretation of results is performed by the Contractor, using appropriate data


processing software.

Defects shall be ordered according to their depth relatively to the thickness of the
pipe.

The classification is made by grouping together the defects for depth intervals.
Usually a number of four damage classes are considered, whose limits are defined
case by case, according to the depth distribution of detected defects. An example
of definition of damage classes follows:

class qualitative damage thickness reduction


evaluation percentage
1 low < 20
2 moderate 20 - 40
3 severe 40 -60
4 very severe > 60

In any case, the Customer reserves the right to ask further or different
classifications.

Data regarding subsequent inspections of the same pipeline shall be properly filed
with easy accessibility.

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6 CRITERIA FOR INTELLIGENT PIG INSPECTION

In this section evaluation parameters and criteria to take decisions about


performing or not an inspection with intelligent pig and to identifying the priorities
in presence of more than one pipeline are illustrated.

Reference is made to the “purposes of the inspection” as defined in Chapter 2.

The activities leading to the decision to carry out an inspection with intelligent pig
are reviewed from the viewpoint of risk analysis according to a probabilistic
approach.

6.1 Probabilistic approach to intelligent pig inspections

The evaluation of the advisability to conduct an inspection with intelligent pig may
be traced back to risk analysis. It consists of:
– the prediction that any damage or break of the pipe might occur; in particular
with reference to damages and breaks caused by corrosion;
– the evaluation of consequences in case of damage or break.

The prediction of the corrosive event, in connection with all the parameters
affecting the phenomenon, may be adequately expressed as probability that the
event occurs.

On the contrary, a deterministic prediction either is not possible, because of the


complexity of the system to describe, or leads to pessimistic and therefore
conservative previsions.

A probabilistic approach, recommended in all the cases of evaluation of inspections


with intelligent pig, covers a typical application in the control of integrity of a
group of pipes. In this case it is necessary to plan a series of inspections according
to a program based on the actual priorities of the inspection, as they result from
risk analysis.

The decision to proceed with intelligent pig inspection of a pipe, lastly, shall be
confirmed in the cost/benefits analysis of the operation. It consists in a comparison
between the costs, direct and indirect, that would be paid if the inspection were not
performed and the chance of a failure accepted, and the costs of performing the
inspection. The inspection costs include:
– mobilisation and demobilisation costs;
– inspection costs;
– the costs of possible digs and visual inspections conducted to verify the results.

The cost of damages results from the product of the probability that a given
corrosive event has to happen and the cost of its consequences.

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6.2 Pipeline integrity assessment

The decision to perform the inspection may be taken at any moment of the
operating life of the pipeline and does not require a comparison with previous
inspections.

As already mentioned, it covers its most significant application with pipelines


whose age is close to their design life.

6.2.1 Evaluation parameters

The decision to conduct the inspection requires the acquisition of the following
data.

6.2.1.1 Pipeline data

They include:
– pipeline age;
– residual life;
– features of the pipeline material: chemical composition; mechanical properties;
– welding procedures; non destructive tests results;
– compliance with references normative and with design data;
– corrosion mitigation methods.

The historical review of the operating phases of the pipeline shall be conducted,
with particular attention to:
– evolution of operative parameters (temperature and pressure);
– changes intervened in the flow rates;
– changes intervened in the fluid composition, particularly in the water phase flow
rate and in the chemical composition (CO2 and H2S molar fractions in the gas
phase, chemical composition of the water phase);
– corrosion events occurred;
– possible pipe inactivity periods and measures adopted to control corrosion.

6.2.1.2 Data regarding internal corrosion

These data include:


– transported fluids and their chemical composition, particularly for the water
phase;
– fluidodynamic conditions: prevailing flow patterns; phases flow rates;
– internal corrosion monitoring data.

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6.2.1.3 Data regarding external corrosion

These data include:


– environment corrosivity - soil or sea water;
– monitoring data of the cathode protection system;
– monitoring data of coating conditions.

The evaluation of corrosion probability for pipelines in contact with soil or sea
water shall be carried out following specific studies.

6.2.1.4 Context and economic data

Data concerning the context are used in the evaluation of the entity of
consequences in case of leakage.

Consequences include:
– the costs for the repair of the failure; the loss of production; other possible
indirect damages;
– social costs: damages to individuals; damages to the environment.

Other important parameters are:


– the location of the pipeline: onshore or offshore;
– for onshore pipelines, the population density in the surrounding area;
– the features of the fluids, in connection with risk for people and environment;
– the times and costs of repair in case of failure;
– the flow rates and the unitary value of production.

6.2.2 Criteria

Some of the main aspects to consider when trying to identify the priorities of
inspection operations are reported, as guidelines, here below.
– Pipelines operating from more than 10 years; they are in conditions in which
corrosion defects, that grow continuously in time, could reach critical
dimensions.
– Offshore pipelines. The costs for offshore repair operation are usually very high.
– Pipelines for the transportation of corrosive or untreated fluids.
– Offshore pipelines located near risk areas for the environment or the population.
– Large size pipelines with significant flow rates.

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6.3 Monitoring of corrosion - New pipelines

The inspection with intelligent pig for the monitoring of corrosion is based on the
comparison between two subsequent inspections; its most significant employment
is with new pipelines, in order to verify the adequacy of the adopted internal
corrosion control systems.

The inspection for the monitoring is therefore identified by:


– the decision to perform the first inspection, i.e. the blank;
– the frequency of subsequent inspections.

6.3.1 Evaluation parameters

Evaluation parameters are the same reported for the integrity control.

The analysis is targeted at aspects concerning internal corrosion, while usually


external corrosion has no a significant role in the decision about performing the
inspection.

6.3.2 Criteria

For new pipelines, the execution of a preliminary inspection at the beginning of


operations shall be evaluated during the design phase of the pipeline.

The execution of a preliminary inspection is recommended in the following cases:


– Offshore pipelines for transportation of untreated fluids - non stabilised oil; wet
gas; multiphase systems - from platform to treatment plant, every time the
internal corrosivity is expected to be severe or very severe.
– Onshore pipelines for transportation of untreated fluids - non stabilised oil; wet
gas or multiphase systems from production wells - to treatment plant, operating
in contact with fluids whose corrosivity is severe or very severe or with a high
corrosion probability and located near risk areas for the environment or the
population.

Subsequent inspections shall be performed after a period of 1 to 5 years, in


connection with the features of the pipe and the corrosivity of the fluids.

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6.4 Monitoring of corrosion. In-service pipelines

The inspection with intelligent pig for the monitoring of corrosion may be used
also on in-service pipelines to accomplish more tasks at once:
– to verify the pipeline integrity;
– to evaluate the effectiveness of internal corrosion mitigation systems, specially
after changes in the composition of the fluids, particularly changes in water flow
rate, and in the chemical compositions (CO2 and H2S molar fractions in the gas
phase, chemical composition of the water phase);
– to monitor the corrosion status of the pipeline, following the detection of
pipeline defects, in order to gather data that allow predictions about the
evolution of the defects and to plan the possible repair operations.

As in the previous case, the inspection for corrosion monitoring is identified by:
– the decision to perform the first inspection, as reference, that allows to obtain
also data for the evaluation of the pipeline integrity;
– the frequency of subsequent inspections.

As regards evaluation parameters and criteria, refer to Chapters 6.2 and 6.3.

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7 GUIDELINES FOR THE VERIFICATION OF INSPECTION


FEASIBILITY

Scope of this chapter is to provide, even to non experts, general criteria useful for
the execution of the feasibility verification of an inspection with intelligent pig,
prior to that one conducted by the Contractor. Only general guidelines are referred
to here below without carrying out a detailed analysis of single activities.

It is task and responsibility of the Contractor to conduct, in every case, an accurate


control of all the problems connected to the execution of the corrosion inspection
with intelligent pig.

For the procedures of execution of the intelligent pig inspection, see the internal
normative references 06806.PLI.MEC.SPC and 06805.SLI.OFF.SPC.

7.1 Verification criteria

The verification of the feasibility of the inspection shall be carried out considering
the guidelines and the requirements mentioned in Chapter 4.

As for operating conditions see Paragraph 4.7.

As for the features of the pipeline and its fittings, the pipeline can be inspected with
the following characteristics:
– internal diameter uniformity, as showed in paragraph 4.3.1;
– curves as showed in paragraph 4.3.2;
– valves with an internal diameter equal to that of the pipe;
– T connections with a diameter smaller than 75% of the nominal diameter for
pipes up to 30” (762 mm) and T connections with a diameter smaller than 50%
of the nominal diameter for pipes with a diameter greater than 30” (762 mm).
Otherwise, T connections with guide bars;
– fittings that do not obstruct the passage of the pig in the pipe.

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8 DOCUMENTATION

As for the results of the inspection are concerned, the Contractor shall provide the
following documentation:
– file of measurement data as shown in Chapter 5.1;
– printout of the results as shown in Chapter 5.1.

–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Il presente documento è RISERVATO ed è di proprietà dell'AGIP. Esso non sarà mostrato a Terzi né sarà utilizzato per scopi diversi da quelli per i quali è stato inviato.
This document is CONFIDENTIAL and the sole property of AGIP. It shall neither be shown to third parties nor used for purposes other than those for which it has been sent.