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Third-Party Damage

Third-party damage is a leading cause of damage to pipelines resulting in dents, cracks, gouges, etc. This damage, if not addressed, can eventually lead to pipeline failure.

TDW offers a full suite of solutions to help pipeline owners and operators find, assess, and repair third-party damage. In the Offshore Pipeline industry, these services enable operators to:

  • Ensure the pipeline is clean prior to deploying any inline inspection technology.
  • Inspect the pipeline and provide details on integrity concerns.
  • Pinpoint damage and prioritize repairs.
  • Restore the pipeline to operating condition.
  • Save time and money through minimally invasive technologies.
  • Avoid bleeding down the entire pipeline.
  • Quickly and safely mitigate risk to personnel and the environment.

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Pigging assists Offshore Pipeline operators in assessing non-emergency third-party damage by cleaning the online or offline pipeline prior to evaluation with inline inspection (ILI) tools, helping to improve data capture and giving operators the most accurate information about necessary repairs.

In addition, as isolation operations are often necessary to facilitate the repair of third-party damage, pigging prior to the isolation is essential to success. By removing built-up liquids, contaminants, and deposits on the pipe wall, operators can help ensure first-time success and a flawless isolation – which translates into a quicker turnaround and less downtime.

  • VANTAGE® V cleaning pig – Multi-use pig designed to remove both hard, crust-like and soft, gummy deposits, as well as ferrous materials.
  • WCK cleaning pig  – Removes contaminants and deposits that increase resistance to flow.
  • REDSKIN™ foam pig  – Used for light cleaning; one version incorporates a urethane cleaning wrap with bypass groove that effectively removes paraffin and other soft deposits that could lead to corrosion.
  • UNISPHERE™ pig – Provides heavy-duty removal of liquid hydrocarbons and water from pipelines and piping systems.

Technical assistance is available from TDW subject matter experts for special circumstances or if the path to a solution requires consultation.

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By using highly accurate inline inspection (ILI) technology to detect and characterize dents – often caused by third party damage – with interacting threats, TDW helps Offshore Pipeline operators avoid multiple inspection runs and unnecessary excavations, saving time while lowering operational risks and costs.

  • Multiple Dataset (MDS) platform – Combines multiple technologies to generate comprehensive, critical information in a single tool run. Utilizes all available technologies to detect and prioritize interactive threats associated with third party damage.
  • SpirALL® Electromagnetic Acoustic Transducer (EMAT) – Using a unique sensor/magnetizer configuration, guided ultrasonic (sound) waves are transmitted into the pipe wall through direct contact, allowing EMAT to inspect natural gas and liquids pipelines. If there is a presence of axial cracking caused by third party damage, EMAT collects data related to axial cracking – i.e., stress corrosion cracking (SCC), hydrogen induced corrosion (HIC), fatigue cracks, etc. – and correlates those results with MDS.
  • Magnetic flux leakage (MFL) – High resolution technology detects and sizes volumetric corrosion features such as metal loss in dents, optimized for liquids pipelines.
  • Gas magnetic flux leakage (GMFL) – High resolution technology detects and sizes volumetric corrosion features such as metal loss in dents, optimized for natural gas pipelines.
  • Deformation (DEF) technology – High resolution geometry inspection detects minute bore reductions.
  • XYZ mapping (XYZ) – Supplies highly accurate location information about every defect reported by pairing global positioning system (GPS) coordinates with inertial mapping.

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In the Offshore Pipeline market, risk reduction is of utmost importance. TDW offers safe, proven hot tapping and plugging (HT&P) solutions for a wide array of pipeline defects and maintenance challenges from dents to corrosion to valve failure.

TDW technicians, who have a long track record of successful offshore projects around the globe, ensure that the work entrusted to the company is done efficiently with minimal interruption to product flow.

Whether operators need an emergency pipeline intervention or topside maintenance during a planned shutdown, HT&P offers safe and proven solutions for getting the project completed. The process incorporates a high pressure pipeline fitting, valve, tapping machine, and isolation equipment – all working together to provide a safe and proven isolation solution. Once the area of pipeline that needs work has been safely isolated and evacuated, the line modification can be performed.

TDW isolation technology plays a critical role in this process and, when combined with a temporary bypass, allows repairs to be performed without the need to stop product flow. The STOPPLE® Train Plugging System, for example, uses double block and bleed technology to help increase efficiency and safety during pipeline maintenance and repair. The system is able to create a double block and bleed seal through a single fitting – reducing costs associated with fittings, valves, welding, and inspection services. The bleed port affixed on the line ensures that any product that bypasses the first seal is contained and evacuated through the bleed port, which creates a safe zone in high-consequence areas.

Whether operators are purchasing equipment to perform their own HT&P jobs or turning to TDW to execute the service, they can rely on the TDW line of equipment and consumables. The Subsea 1200RC tapping machine, for example, is a topside-driven hot tap machine that can be safely operated down to a depth of 3,000 meters (9842.5 feet). The machine has proven to be a highly reliable shallow and deep-water solution.

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Non-intrusive inline isolation technology makes it possible for Offshore Pipeline operators to safely repair third-party damage on a section of a high-pressure pipeline without the need to bleed down the entire line.

When included as part of an Emergency Pipeline Repair System (EPRS), non-intrusive inline isolation can be executed immediately after catastrophic damage, minimizing environmental and safety fallout.

  • SmartPlug® isolation technology – Double block and monitor (DBM) non-intrusive inline isolation technology from TDW minimizes platform downtime by eliminating or drastically reducing the need to blow down the pipeline segment during repair, minimizing the release of hydrocarbons. This system also makes it possible for hydrostatic testing to take place immediately after isolation, and is tracked, positioned, controlled, and monitored through the SmartTrack™ system.