The New 2016 Pipeline Operators Forum (POF) Specification; A Vendors Experience
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The POF has been supporting the pipeline industry to share & build good practices to improve the quality of pipeline integrity management for several years. The POF specifications for In-line Inspection of Pipelines is a well-known document that is provided to the industry and has become the default standard for those who provide ILI services. In 2016, a major update to this influential document. Was issued. This paper presents a vendor’s response to these changes & how it has provided a direction in the development of tools in the near term & in the future. POF provides vendors with a road map on how to deploy ILI tools & also how to report the data. The 2016 version added some new requirements & this paper addresses those in light of current, developmental & future technologies. These include requirements for, pinhole defects, grooving & slotting defects, crack-like defects, interacting threats, defects based on integrity & not just shape, strain-based assessment of dents, mechanical damage as opposed to metal loss, seam manufacture type & identification of the long seam and more. It is hard to envisage a single tool with all these capabilities but this may not be a unsurmountable challenge. This paper presents a vendor’s approach to meeting these demanding requirements in as fewer tools as possible. So why would this be important? Clearly the most obvious reasons would be cost savings in running fewer tools but there are other benefits, including better anomaly characterization; automatic alignment of anomalies; higher accuracy; detection of more onerous & interacting anomalies; & other sources of key integrity information such as changes in material, strain, etc., which will lead to a much better understanding of complete pipeline integrity. The paper will also present some case studies where these benefits have been realized.
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