This document presents the application steps of the repair and structural reinforcement system with high-performance polymer and composite material. Without the need to shut-down the offshore platform, this technology is based on ASME and ISO international standards with high safety and applicable in classified areas where hot-work permit is not obtainable.
The methods and procedures are applied and carried out exclusively for each application, after a judicious risk assessment. Recently, a 14" super duplex pipe carrying seawater line, operating at 8 bar pressure, on an oil platform located in Ghana showed active leak. In order to carry a conventional repair, (replacement of the problematic section or conventional hot welding) the shut-down of production would be necessary. Furthermore, the conventional method was not applicable due to the potentially explosive atmospheric conditions. Based on Part 4 of the ASME PCC-2 standard, the repair system was engineered to a 10-year lifespan and carried out with absolute safety. The procedure consists of a surface preparation, leak containment and structural reinforcement on the defective area of the pipe. All the steps in the aforementioned procedure were cold-work type and without the need to shut-down, therefore without loss of production. The equations used to calculate the thickness and length of the repair system with composite material, as well as the risk assessment, were in accordance to the referenced standards.
The repair system was applied with success without the need to shut-down the production and was considered permanent by ABS. The hardness of the composite, measured after 24 hours, indicates full cure of the repair as predicted by the procedure and quality standards. Therefore, the leak was 100% sealed and the area was structurally reinforced in line with the engineering plan and without any loss of production.
The integrity of aging offshore assets is a common global problem due to the constraint of concurrent activities in a production environment. This methodology using composite materials in association with asset integrity management without shutdown production has gained recognition to be a long-term solution. The implementation of the repair and structural reinforcement system with high-performance polymer and composite material provides cost reduction, significant health, safety and environmental advantages as it enables immediate attention for the defect, on top of the benefit to avoid the loss of production.