Lessons Learnt Overcoming Challenges in Pipelines in the move to De-fossilization
Proceedings Publication Date
Dr. Mike Kirkwood
Mike Kirkwood, David Stordeur, Neil McKnight
Part of the proceedings of

As the industry transitions to renewables and de-fossilization of the energy sector, products are being introduced into pipelines that are significantly different than historical oil and gas. Pipelines will remain a relevant and efficient way to transport energy over long distances, but this energy, and associated byproducts, could take some form other than crude, petroleum products and natural gas. Hydrogen, biofuels, ammonia, carbon dioxide, steam and hot water are the talk of the pipeline industry but, are these products new?

For many years, operators of transmission and distribution pipelines have focused on the development of expertise to safely operate crude, petroleum products and natural gas pipelines. Operating a pipeline with other products will bring some new challenges but it may not be necessary to start from a blank page - these products are not completely new to the pipeline industry.

This paper will share some experiences of pigging, inspection, intervention and isolation in some of these new products. Each product has its own characteristics that make it difficult to work with but, over the years, technology and processes have been developed to ensure that these pipelines can be cleaned, inspected, accessed and repaired. The paper will also present the experiences in developing these solutions and how this knowledge can be applied to current and emerging applications today.

The paper will present the historic development of the solutions and use real-world applications to illustrate how these tools and techniques can be applied today. Areas where additional development is still needed will be highlighted and current industry response will also be discussed. The aim of this paper is to share previous learning to ensure that the move to de-fossilization happens safely.

Key Words

De-fossilization, Energy Transition, Emerging Fuels, Hydrogen, Carbon Dioxide, Ammonia, Pigging, Inspection, ILI, Intervention, Isolation, Repairs

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