Mapping Existing Pipelines

Since the beginning of the first natural gas delivery system in 1859, gas has been delivered to the consumer market via underground pipelines. During the early years of production, producers used surveyors to create pipeline maps and identify gas line easements. However, over time these maps became obsolete and unusable.  Over the years mineral leases and gas production have been developed, produced and traded among operators without the creation of accurate records, loss of markers and accurate maps of the existing gas lines. In the field, one would rarely find any kind of gathering system right-of-way markers, especially if the pipeline was cut through a pasture or large area of land.

Current methods for mapping include using GPS waypoints where pipeline sections are indexed, categorized, and identified by references within their computer systems.  This method of identifying sections within pipeline systems is useful for the producer to maintain compliance with routine regulatory inspections required by State regulatory agencies.

Often, losing pressure in a gathering system is the first indication of a potential leak, particularly in an old pipeline system, that is the result of corrosion, a crack, bad welding, or a faulty section. A gas leak is problematic because it can mean the loss of thousands of dollars in marketable gas production as well as an environmental liability. Thus, it becomes critical to find a leak as quickly as possible. Depending upon the gas pressure at the wellhead and pressure recorded along the way, gas leaks can be located with the right equipment/sensors to sniff methane gas in the air above a leak. Even so, location of a leak may require several days, especially in the absence of an accurate pipeline map.

To determine quickly if there is a gas leak within a pipeline section, InSpectrum uses a combination of various technologies to locate and map and then customized software to analyze the collected data. For future mandatory inspections, InSpectrum utilizes the captured waypoints to index, categorize and assign an identification to the pipeline section. The GPS tagging and georeferencing enables InSpectrum to conduct future inspections autonomously through the captured waypoints. Using current technology, InSpectrum is able to inspect several miles of oil and gas pipelines per day.

InSpectrum identifies and remaps gas pipeline gathering systems, transmission pipelines and area distribution lines. All data collected during flight operations will be delivered to the operator via VPN or other encrypted means as designated by the operator. During our client missions, InSpectrum will

  • use customized technology to locate and map an existing pipeline and to index, categorize, process and map each section;,
  • process the data for leak detection or hydrocarbon seepage;
  • provide a report to the operator and deliver all data for their files and records; and
  • convert all data files to SCADA in the appropriate data interchange format, geotiff so into another data format can be used to import data into individual systems.

Please contact InSpectrum for additional information and for scheduling a mission.



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