All You Need To Know About Pipeline Leak Detection System

13-12-2021 Aesthetix

Pipeline systems are one of the most valuable and key transport support systems in any country. Having a well-functioning pipeline system can immensely help various industries and sectors across the country from waterways, gas, oil, biofuel to sewage, slurry and steam. Such an important system needs to be foolproof, leakage proof and resistant to damage and external impacts. This is where a pipeline leak detection system comes in handy.

Traditionally, pipeline leak detection systems can be divided into three categories - internal, external and visual. Internal leakage detection systems make use of measurement sensors to determine the level of fluid inside the pipes. The 3 subcategories of internal pipeline leak detection systems are:

  • Volume balance, pressure/flow monitoring, pressure point analysis and the negative pressure wave method
  • Computational Pipeline Monitoring (CPM), Real-Time Transient Modelling (RTTM), etc.
  • Data analysis methods using statistical methods

External pipeline monitoring involves the use of equipment and sensors located externally to the pipe to measure any leakages or escaped fluid if any. External monitoring systems usually involve hydrocarbon sensing fiber optics, vapor sensing tubes, acoustic sensors, temperature sensing cables, liquid sensing cables, chemical vapor sensors and optical methods, to name a few.

Visual monitoring systems involve human intervention and the physical inspection of the pipeline, either by way of drones or helicopters, driving alongside the pipeline route or with the help of other visual sensors.

Of all three methods, visual leak detection systems are considered the most effective as it requires the direct involvement of humans, thereby reducing the probability of missing out on leakages or damages, if any. However, it is also considered the most expensive method of the lot for the same reason.

Pipeline leak detection systems have since evolved to its more upgraded version, the Extended Real-Time Transient Model (E-RTTM). Using leak pattern identification and computational pipeline monitoring technology, E-RTTM helps monitor and protect pipeline, long or short, from the risks of leak and/or damage, on a real time basis. It uses measured conditions to calculate the flow profile of the pipeline, including flow, pressure, temperature, and density. E-RTTM helps measure the different pressure points and temperature in the inlets and outlets of the pipeline, integrate it in real time to a centralised monitoring system and create a standard for understanding the normal working conditions. All this can be useful to detect leaks, theft, damage, etc. as and when it occurs, i.e., in abnormal conditions.

The recent developments in IoT and cloud based technologies have also resulted in the evolution of advanced pipeline leak detection systems like IoT based Remote Monitoring Systems. With this, pipeline operators can detect pipeline leaks in real time, locate the source, deploy resources for managing the leaks and monitor the progress without undue delays. An IoT based remote monitoring system can be advantageous to a large extent as it allows:

  • Minimisation of losses
  • Real time update on nature and extent of leak
  • Timely maintenance
  • Tracking pipeline corrosion and abrasion
  • Prevent damage to people and property both inside and outside the company, thereby protecting company’s reputation 

In this age of smart technologies and digital revolution, pipeline leak detection systems too have undergone a tremendous change from their previous avatars. If your company is looking to upgrade your pipeline leak detection system, you need to engage a high performing team to provide you with the right resources and tools to manage and monitor your pipeline in the most effective and efficient way. And who better than Aesthetix, the leading IoT and cloud based monitoring system provider to take care of your pipeline and its needs.

With integrated control systems managing transport, infrastructure and projects simultaneously, Aesthetix can provide you with the latest cutting edge technology in pipeline management, offering real time monitoring of its working. Connect with Aesthetix today to talk to our experts and get a free quote on implementing a pipeline leak detection system in your company.

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