Enbridge’s (“The Company”) Transportation South pipeline (“The Pipeline”) is over 550 miles (900 km) long and has twelve compressor stations with a daily throughput of approximately two BCF primarily feeding the Vancouver, British Columbia and US Pacific Northwest. While operating this pipeline, especially during the construction season, there are challenges to the gas controllers and planners to maintain the system’s capacity when confronted with pipe and compressor outages, pressure limitations, crossover velocity limits and tool runs. This process is further complicated when there is the potential for multiple events occurring at the same time. The Company had its own in-house Excel spreadsheet-based modeling tool that could be used to define a single event combination and perform simulation. However, each event combination required a new spreadsheet which had to be manually set up and run. This methodology also required operator intervention to handle potential system and horsepower limitations as well as manual compilation of the results. Gas controllers and planners needed a more efficient and automated process running multiple capacity models that would not only reflect the various combinations of events accurately, but also quickly allow for a better understanding of the possible effects on the system.

This paper will cover the Company’s transition to a new maximum capacity modeling approach. With this new solution, all the outage combinations can be set up in a single spreadsheet which is then used to run multiple simulations simultaneously, with the results for each simulation combined and presented in a format that is easy for the Gas Controllers and others to understand. This new methodology significantly reduced the turnaround time, and with easier data entry and packaging of the results, allowed for more event combinations to be evaluated. This new solution reduces the reliance on human judgement for operational planning and decision making, increases the reliability of the modeling process, and notably improves the safety and performance of the pipeline system.

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