Pipeline movement refers to any change in the position or orientation of a pipeline. This can include changes in the vertical or horizontal position, as well as changes in the angle or curvature of the pipeline. Pipeline movement can occur for several reasons, including:
Soil settlement: Changes in the ground or soil supporting the pipeline, such as due to subsidence or erosion.
Thermal expansion and contraction: Changes in the temperature of the pipeline, causing it to expand or contract.
Ground movement: Movements in the ground due to earthquakes, landslides, or other geological events.
External loads: External forces acting on the pipeline, such as from construction or excavation activity.
Pipeline movement can have serious consequences, including:
Leaks: Movement of the pipeline can cause damage to its surface, leading to leaks.
Reduced flow capacity: Movement of the pipeline can cause changes in its orientation, reducing its flow capacity.
Pipeline rupture: Severe movement of the pipeline can cause it to rupture.
To minimize the risk of pipeline movement, pipeline operators must implement a comprehensive pipeline integrity management program that includes regular inspections, maintenance, and monitoring of pipelines. This can help to identify and address potential threats to the pipeline before they result in movement.
In the event that pipeline movement is detected, it is important for pipeline operators to assess the severity of the movement and determine the appropriate course of action. This may involve reinforcing the pipeline, relocating a section of the pipeline, or shutting down the pipeline to prevent further movement.
Overall, pipeline movement is a serious concern for pipeline operators, and it is essential for them to prioritize safety and implement measures to prevent and address movement in pipelines.
It’s for a reason that we are amongst Germany’s Top 100 innovators. Because our mission is to overcome these inspection challenges and, together with our clients, continuously improve the safety and reliability of all pipelines.