API was recently contacted by water utility contractor KIER in the UK. The client had identified possible leaks on a DI newly installed pipeline. Due to the pipeline bury depth and using traditional techniques the client could not pinpoint the leaks exact location.
The pipeline is situated close to a water source and deeply buried.
The pipeline is a 500mm pipe with a test required at 16 bar pressure.
Length of pipe is 1550 metres.
The only water source for pipe testing is via pumped tankers.
The client utilised a utility leakage team and searched for leaks over several weeks with the following methods:
Noise correlators – no leaks identified (not accurate on large diameter metallic pipes)
Listening stick- Pipeline was deeply sited below ground so this technique not feasible
Tracer gas was considered but not implemented due to size of main
This had a major knock on effect, as the client cannot proceed with additional pipe installation, and also this delays the company creating revenue to complete additional projects.
API Successfully identified 3 leaks on 2 sections of the pipeline using PIPA Technology the Pipepod Hydrostatic. The unique system enables a special water safe cable to be installed using a tethered swab technique, up to a distance of 2km navigating bends and fittings. The survey included a total of 14 bends, and the leaks are now repaired and verified by KIER.
The project was an ideal case study for our new and unique Pipepod H system, API also did an amazing job dealing with the difficult terrain and wet weather conditions during the leakage sweeps. PIPA Technology offers a new industry approach to new pipe installation leak detection, and this should be adopted globally in the future.