Safety and reliability in gas transmission
NET4GAS uses a wide range of methods to ensure the secure and reliable delivery of gas.
Strict quality requirements have been established to govern the construction of gas lines and other important components of the gas delivery system, and these requirements are closely monitored.
Important data concerning operations, failures and maintenance, as well as diagnostic data about the condition of the equipment is gathered during operations.
Internal pipeline inspections are carried out using a so-called "intelligent pig". This inspection tool passes through the pipeline without interrupting the transmission of gas and is fundamental for pipeline diagnostics. It is pushed through the pipeline by the flow of gas and is capable of detecting most production or construction defects, such as third party intervention or corrosion resulting from insulation damage. In addition to regular inspections, the continuous maintenance and repair of hazardous defects ensure long-term, reliable pipeline operation. Most defects can be repaired by replacing the pipeline’s insulation. In special cases, plastic sleeves are used, or, as a last resort, damaged sections of pipeline are cut out. NET4GAS can perform even the most demanding repairs without interrupting gas delivery. This thorough approach also includes quality inspections of pipeline insulation, localisation of all objects and defects using GIS, and the upkeep of an accurate database from the pipeline’s construction to the present. The PIMS (Pipeline Integrity Management System) guarantees the optimum use of all this information.
Compression stations also play an important role in gas transmission. The safe and reliable operation of these stations is supported by an implemented diagnostic system, which not only helps prevent emergencies, but also facilitates the maintenance and repair of vital equipment. Turbines and compressors are examined using vibrodiagnostics, a method that uses vibration to estimate, measure and evaluate the condition of equipment and detect any potential defects. Tribodiagnostics is used to measure the capacity of turbines and compressors based on lubricant contamination. Boroscopy enables the machinery to undergo an internal inspection without having to be dismantled, while termovision detects potential failures by monitoring unusual temperature increases of equipment. NET4GAS employs these methods as part of a complex system to monitor the technology at its compression stations.
Today diagnostic systems are interconnected with control and information systems, ensuring a focus on maintenance and operational efficiency. All maintenance is carried out based on the systematic monitoring of the reliability of the equipment and an evaluation of operational risks.
With more the 3 500 kilometres of pipeline, not a single accident that would endanger lives, cause substantial damage to property or reduce gas delivery has occurred during NET4GAS’s history of operations. Over the course of almost 40 years, only two significant pipeline incidents were recorded, both of which took place before the introduction of regular internal inspections of gas lines.