Modern pipeline maintenance requires advanced corrosion prevention systems in order to prolong service cycles and to ensure reliable and sustainable operation features. Corrosion is one of those occurrences that will affect the safe and efficient running of the pipeline with the costs for shut down, lost production, product loss, environment contamination and loss of customer confidence running into millions of Euros.
Coating degradation problems that lead to the creation of a corrosion risk within the design life of a pipeline can mainly be attributed to one of the following causes: (1) an inappropriate specification for the coating material and/or coating process; (2) poor surface preparation and/or application; and (3) interaction with the operating environment like humidity, salts, winds, temperatures. Poor surface preparation and coating application continues to create problems with premature degradation, particularly loss of adhesion resulting in disbondment.
Besides the traditional applied protective coating systems which make use of chemical crosslink reactions for guaranteed corrosion protection, one might consider a totally contradictory approach in order to protect metal pipelines against the penetration of humidity and air.
The latest amorphous viscous elastic polymer pipeline coating technology having no specific chemical functionality exhibits new and unique aspects for sustainable corrosion protection. The new coating system is an extremely low cost innovative approach for rehabilitation and coating of field joints. This technology has been developed for use as the external coating of pipelines. This technology has been designed and tested specifically to fit the special field application requirements of buried oil and gas pipelines, and it exhibits properties that are contrary to traditionally specified systems and in most cases far exceeding them. 1 Properties and the tape-like application of the elastomer will be described. Possibilities to use elastomers as part of pipeline maintenance will be discussed.
What are the limits and chances for materials that are not hard at all but tough enough to do the job?