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Two Contrasting Internal Corrosion Scenarios Assessed by Liquid Petroleum–Internal Corrosion Direct Assessment (LP-ICDA) for the Innovative Development of a Dynamic Pitting Factor

[+] Author Affiliations
Patrick J. Teevens, Zhenjin Zhu

Broadsword Corrosion Engineering, Ltd., Calgary, AB, Canada

Ashish Khera

Allied Engineers, New Delhi, India

Abdul Wahab Al-Mithin, Shabbir Safri

Kuwait Oil Company, Kuwait City, Kuwait

Paper No. IPC2012-90184, pp. 369-378; 10 pages
  • 2012 9th International Pipeline Conference
  • Volume 2: Pipeline Integrity Management
  • Calgary, Alberta, Canada, September 24–28, 2012
  • Conference Sponsors: International Petroleum Technology Institute, Pipeline Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4513-4
  • Copyright © 2012 by ASME


This paper details the complete four-step Liquid Petroleum - Internal Corrosion Direct Assessment (LP-ICDA) for two operationally different liquid petroleum pipeline systems owned by Kuwait Oil Company. The internal corrosion pipeline wall metal losses were originally predicted using a uniform pitting factor and subsequently upgraded by a dynamic pitting factor. The first case evaluated three, 1959 vintage, non-piggable 40″/38″ telescopic export crude oil pipelines (CR102, CR103 and CR104) with individual corresponding parallel run lengths of 7.7km. All three pipelines run parallel to each other in a common corridor. They are gravity-fed from a storage tank farm resulting in a moderate fluid transit operating velocity. The second assessment was performed on a 6.5 year-old, piggable 36″ crude oil production pipeline (CR088) with an overall distance of 25 kilometers. During the Pre-assessment step, pipeline historical and operational data were collected. Limited historical data was available for the 3 non-piggable pipelines compared to the newer 36″ pipeline which was ultrasonically (UT) inspected via in-line inspection (ILI). In the Indirect Inspection step, the proprietary internal corrosion predictive model (ICPM), enpICDATM, was applied with a uniform pitting factor to predict the amount of degradation at those locations where liquid hold-up, solids accumulation, and in-turn the internal metal losses would be most pronounced. During the Detailed Examination step, “in-the-ditch” UT was utilized to measure and confirm the remaining wall thicknesses of the three gravity pipelines whereas a comparison of the ICPM to the ILI was executed for the newer 36″ × 25km pipeline. In the Post-Assessment step, a comparison between the predicted metal losses and the UT-ILI measured data were carried out. As a result of a gap analysis, dynamic pitting factors were proposed and developed to enhance and update the proprietary model for predicting the metal losses point-by-point within each subregion over the entire pipeline in terms of local pressure, temperature, water accumulation, and solids deposition. Validation of the in-house prediction was performed using the field measurements for gravity pipelines and ILI data for CR088, demonstrating that metal losses predicted by the proprietary model and measured through field tests and ILI data agree reasonably well for both extreme scenarios. Results showed that three gravity pipelines have minimal internal corrosion under a high flow velocity despite having a 51-year operating history whereas severe internal corrosion was identified after a 6.5-year operation for the CR088 pipeline. Hence, selection of a proper operating velocity is crucial for crude oil pipeline operations. Under a low speed condition, localized pitting corrosion dominates whereas uniform corrosion is predominant under a higher flow or “sweep” velocity. Since the pipeline operators were more interested in the worst-case scenarios, i.e. metal loss due to localized pitting corrosion, development of dynamic pitting factors was undoubtedly an innovative improvement of the overall Liquid Petroleum - Internal Corrosion Direct Assessment through capturing the fluctuation of metal losses along the entire pipeline, which can enhance the ICDA methodology toward a higher level of precision and accuracy.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME
Topics: Corrosion , Petroleum



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