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New Leak Location Approaches for Gas Pipelines Using Acoustic Waves

[+] Author Affiliations
Cuiwei Liu, Yuxing Li, Qihui Hu, Wuchang Wang, Yazhen Wang, Xuejie Li, Minghai Xu

China University of Petroleum (East China), Qingdao, China

Paper No. IPC2018-78327, pp. V003T04A013; 7 pages
  • 2018 12th International Pipeline Conference
  • Volume 3: Operations, Monitoring, and Maintenance; Materials and Joining
  • Calgary, Alberta, Canada, September 24–28, 2018
  • Conference Sponsors: Pipeline Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5188-3
  • Copyright © 2018 by ASME


Natural gas is a vital energy carrier which can serve as an energy source, which is extremely vulnerable to leakages from pipeline transportation systems. The required ignition energy is low. Although the safety of natural gas pipelines has been improved, the average economic loss of natural gas accidents, including leaks, is large. To solve these problems, an acoustic leak localization system is designed and researched for gas pipelines using experiments with methods proposed according to different application situations. The traditional method with two sensors installed at both ends can be improved by a newly proposed combined signal-processing method, which is applied for the case that it is necessary to calculate the time differences with data synchronicity. When the time differences cannot be calculated accurately, a new method based on the amplitude attenuation model is proposed. Using these methods, the system can be applied to most situations. Next, an experimental facility at the laboratory scale is established, and experiments are carried out. Finally, the methods are verified and applied for leak localization. The results show that this research can provide a foundation for the proposed methods. The maximum experimental leak localization errors for the methods are −0.592%, and −7.62%. It is concluded that the system with the new methods can be applied to protect and monitor natural gas pipelines.

Copyright © 2018 by ASME



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