The Use of Advanced Geohazard Management Software to Incorporate Real-Time and Near-Time Data into Decision Making
Proceedings Publication Date
Dr. Alex Baumgard
Alex Baumgard, Katie Burkell
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The increase in available real-time or near-time weather and earth sensing data and the expanded use of remotely accessed geotechnical instrumentation has resulted in a step change over the last decade in how pipeline operators can manage the integrity of their pipelines related to geohazards. The age-old techniques of watching SCADA readouts combined with periodic line inspections by helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft have now been supplanted by the use of real-time flood monitoring and seismic alerting, the ease of obtaining highly precise ground monitoring through Lidar and InSAR, and the use of new geotechnical and geophysics tools with significantly reduced costs of remote telemetry.

To effectively use this wealth of real-time and near-time data, geohazard management software for pipelines has evolved to integrate and visualize this data in ways that drive better, faster insight and perform automated analytics to highlight change dynamically. With the newer generation of geohazard management software, operators can efficiently leverage immense amounts of data while still focusing their attention on the most important areas of their pipeline system. Across a pipeline network, for example, the newer generation of software can highlight areas where snowpack or precipitation is greater than normal, identify watercourse crossings where flooding is occurring, outline where forest fires have recently occurred, or alert on areas where the ground surface has moved. Realtime instrumentation can be remotely interrogated to determine when the situation started to change, how fast it is changing, and can be analyzed with other data sources such as from Inline Inspection (ILI) tool strain data and Lidar change detection – all in one place.

This paper will present case histories demonstrating how these newer technologies can be successfully incorporated into geohazard management programs through software that provides continuous data integration, insight and analytics, and active monitoring and alerting of geohazards.

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