The planning and design optimization of the Canadian sections of the Alaska Highway Pipeline is now complete and construction has begun on the largest privately financed pipeline project ever undertaken in Canada. In keeping with the magnitude of the project, no pipeline project has been analyzed more thoroughly with consideration being given to pipe size selection, the use of existing systems as opposed to new high pressure systems, compression versus loop pipe, cooling versus additional compression, single versus multiple unit compressors, and electric drive versus gas turbine driven compressors. To describe each and every study in detail would require much more time than is allotted for this presentation and, therefore, I will restrict my discussion to presenting a few examples of the studies done. Furthermore, I will concentrate primarily on the Alberta sections of the system since this is the area for which Nova has responsibility for the design. At the conclusion of this presentation, I hope you will have some appreciation for the magnitude of the project, the scope of the studies done on the design, and basically how we arrived at the design as it now sits.

Project Description

The Alaska Highway Gas Pipeline Project will provide a system for moving approximately 27 TCF of Prudhoe Bay gas to markets in the U.S. west and mid-west and it provides an option for the eventual connection of Mackenzie Delta reserves, estimated at over 5 TCF, via a Dempster Highway route. To expand on that point, the project will be constructed in two phases. The initial phase involves the construction of facilities in Canada and the U.S. for the delivery of Alberta natural gas to the U.S. Exports through the Western Leg are scheduled to begin in May of 1981, and the Eastern Leg flows are scheduled to begin by the end of that year. The Prebuild portion of the project will deliver 2.3 TCF of Alberta gas and will be built at an estimated cost of $662 million for the Canadian portion. The pre build plan involves building about 130 miles of 36" line on the Western Leg between Caroline, Alberta and the U.S. border at Kingsgate, B.C. to connect with a U.S. - built line looping Pacific Gas Transmission facilities to Stanfield, Oregon. From there, additional loops of existing lines will extend to points in Utah and California. The longer Eastern Leg (about 395 miles of 42") will be built from Caroline to Monchy, Saskatchewan to connect with Northern Border facilities supplying mid-west markets. Of the 2.3 TCF of surplus Alberta gas to be moved through Prebuild, 1.6 TCF will be moved through the Eastern Leg over 6 years; and 0.7 TCF through the Western Leg over 7 years. The second phase of the project involves the construction of facilities to be used in conjunction with existing facilities in both Canada and the U.S. for the delivery of Alaskan gas to the U.S. in time for the 1986 heating season.

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