Boiler system is one of the most critical systems for a utility plant. A utility plant had experienced high percentages of boiler downtime owing to boiler tube sheet cracking failures. Investigations carried out revealed high stress at the tube-to-tube sheet joint in the boiler fire-side entrance. Tube-to-tube sheet joints at the boiler fire-side entrance had been fabricated by strength welding and without any expansion. The strength welded joint had created undue stress leading to cracking of the weld joint by thermal expansion. A higher quality expanded joint consisting of expanding, flaring and seal welding the fire-side entrance was implemented during the re-tube process. The utility plant has now zero downtime due to boiler tube failure. This article summarizes the description and history of failures with the boiler at the utility plant; investigations and corrective actions carried out; and the present improved condition of the boilers.
Corrosion, either internal or external, along with other types of defects on pipelines eventually lead to leaks without proper treatment. This gives rise to several issues, including environmental and safety hazards, and in case of pipe leaks in a plant, a loss of the efficiency of the process or, ultimately, failure of the process. Replacing the corroded pipelines (piping) can be difficult, costly and time consuming especially for plant. A required shutdown causes major economic loss. Thus, instead of a replacement of the defected pipelines, the installation of online repair is a better option.
Repairs of pipelines include metallic and non-metallic repairs. Metallic repairs generally require welding or hot works which is not suitable for online repair of pipes containing hydrocarbons. In such cases the use of non-metallic composite repairs is the optimum solution. A non-metallic composite repair system is a system used to reinforce structures using a fiber equipped with a thermoset epoxy system. The epoxy system consists of a hardener and a resin which, after mixing, become solid through a polymerization reaction after a short duration of time, a process that is called curing. Depending on the temperature, the duration of time changes in an inverse relation. The higher the temperature, the smaller the duration of time needed for curing. This system can be used to reinforce pipelines with both external and internal corrosion and it can be used on Straight Pipes, Tees, Elbows, Flanges and weld joints. The repair system can also be installed online without the need for a shutdown in a short amount of time and a small requirement of labor intensity, making it cost effective. It is also environmentally friendly. In this paper we are going to present cases that were resolved by our company that demonstrate how successful these non-metallic composite repairs are and how diverse their applications can be
In alignment with the corporate road map, the Southern Area Gas Producing Facilities (SAGPF) of Saudi Aramco has led an initiative of replacing a traditional carbon steel flow-line with reinforced thermoplastic pipe (RTP) on a trial basis. The candidate flow-line was selected after identifying several metal loss indications via an in-line-Inspection tool. The objective of this experimental pilot was to examine the performance of nonmetallic pipeline for a conventional gas well. It is noteworthy that this trial-test is considered to be the first of its kind in Saudi Aramco —the use of RTP in a permanent flow-line installation at a conventional gas well. This technical paper will primarily discuss several important elements of the project. Firstly, it will highlight an overview on the overall corrosion damage mechanism within the conventional gas wells’ piping network and existing controlling measures. Secondly, it will highlight the advantages of this technology deployment in the oil and gas industry. Additionally, it will discuss the implementation of RTP flow-line installation, in which it will present the construction phase, commissioning, operational performance, and the successful criteria of this trial test.