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Making Offshore Pipeline Cleaning Easier

Ensuring constant product flow through pipelines from offshore platforms to shore requires a maintenance procedure called pigging. It involves the insertion of a device — called a pig — into the pipeline to clean residue from the inner walls and prevent wax formation.

GD Engineering®, an SPX company, offers a technology that allows the deployment of multiple pig launchers on unmanned platforms.

Remote Launching

Placed inside the pipeline, the “pig” device cleans residue from the inner walls of the pipeline sections. Oil flowing through the line pushes the pigs along. The GD Engineering solution enables cost-effective, single-line pigging operations to be carried out as part of the regular pipeline maintenance program.

GD Engineering also worked in conjunction with one of the world's largest providers of products and services to the energy industry to design a multiple pig launching system for deepwater applications. The launcher eliminates the need for round-trip pigging and expensive dual-flow lines to connect satellite fields to host facilities. Individual pigs can be sequentially launched into a pipeline from a remote onshore control room, allowing facilities to provide remote pipeline cleaning and maintenance.

GD Engineering recently supplied fully automatic multiple pig launchers for horizontal-type installations in New Zealand and for vertical-type installations in Romania.