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Research Update August 2017
Earlier this month, research project RP6.2-05 ‘High voltage holiday testing of dual layer FBE’ commenced after Deakin’s research team and industry advisors met to reach the final agreement on the basic scope of the work. This research project will examine changing the allowable holiday testing voltage that dual layer fusion bonded epoxy (FBE) coatings can be subjected to when exposed to moisture, thereby simulating the possible state of such coatings when tested after departing the coating applicator sites. The project outcomes are designed to save pipeline coating repair costs by recommending appropriate holiday testing voltage and will provide benefit to the Australian pipeline industry through advising inputs into standard AS/NZS 3862.
Also this month, researchers from University of Wollongong commenced project RP6.3-12 ‘Elimination of PWHT for in-service welding’ and Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and industry advisors. This project will study the many different code thickness limits above which the post weld heat treatment (PWHT) is required considering elimination of PWHT in some cases by evidence of the absence of hydrogen assisted cold cracking (HACC).
The outcomes of this project are intended to assist the pipeline industry by reducing the risk of cracking during field in-service welding and will produce benefits for the nation in terms of reduced in-service welding risk, improved safety and security of supply, avoiding catastrophic failures, as well as reduced energy costs for greater international competitiveness.
Research Project RP1-06 ‘Cracking in Polyethylene Pipelines’ which aims in creating greater insight into the polyethylene (PE) pipe degradation and lifespan is closed to finalisation. The research has produced results addressing the deficiencies of using conventional test methods on aged pipes and distinguishing the best characterization techniques of long-term performance of PE pipes.
A proposal for the second phase of this research has been developed this month and is being assessed by APGA RSC members. The research in the proposed next phase will focus on understanding the failure mode of new generation pipe materials by ageing and squeeze-off and will study the links between the pipe regional location and degradation.