Saudi Arabia Oil Refinery 400mm GRP Pipeline External Surface Damage Repair
When construction work at an oil refinery in Saudi Arabia revealed an underground 400mm GRP pipe to be suffering from external surface damage, the opportunity was taken to repair the line, restoring its integrity by strengthening the weakened areas to lessen the chances of future leaks.
Case Study Overview
Site Oil refinery
Location Saudi Arabia
Pipe Type 400mm GRP pipeline
Repair Type Surface restoration
Products Superfast Steel Epoxy Putty
The underground 400mm GRP pipe was excavated during ongoing construction work at the oil refinery. The external surface of the line was discovered to be damaged, suffering from heavy scoring in two areas.
Although the pipe was not yet leaking, the refinery were concerned that the weakening of the exterior would lead to a future breach. If that happened, then the line would have to be excavated again for repair or possible replacement at considerable expense and inconvenience.
The refinery therefore decided to strengthen the line and restore its integrity by repairing the weakened areas whilst the pipe remained accessible. This would lessen the chance of leaks occurring after the pipe had been reburied.
Superfast Steel Epoxy Putty was chosen for the application because of its fast work time and the relatively small areas requiring repair. Multiple 114g Superfast Steel Sticks were used, where the putty is supplied in a pre-formatted stick with resin on the outside and hardener through the middle.
Chunks of putty were cut from the stick and kneaded by hand. Once the putty had turned to a uniform colour to indicate successful mixing and whilst still soft, it was pushed down onto the pipe and smoothed over the scored areas.
Within 10 minutes, Superfast Steel began to harden. Once fully cured, it permanently embedded into the imperfections in the line, creating a new waterproof layer as hard as steel over the weakened sections of GRP pipe.
Applying Superfast Steel to all areas of damage took under two hours to complete. The refinery could have further reinforced the line using SylWrap HD Pipe Repair Bandage, but they did not want to excavate further down to create the required clearance under the pipe needed to apply the wrap.
Had the area of damage been larger or deeper, then Industrial Metal Epoxy Repair Paste would have been used. Industrial Metal is trowel applied and offers a longer work time, allowing more epoxy to be mixed and spread over significant sections of weakened pipes requiring rebuild.
Following the surface damage repair, the pipe was reburied. Several years later and there had been no reported breaches of the line, indicating that Superfast Steel had done its job in strengthening the pipe.
Fast working epoxy putty used to repair areas of surface damage and restore integrity of pipes
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