The oil pipeline leak detection system (LDS) provides for quick detection of leakage and determines where and when it occurred. Timely detection can significantly reduce the reaction time of emergency services and, as a result, significantly reduce the environmental damage from spillage.
The leak detection system is a software and hardware package that processes information from sensors located on the pipeline in real time to detect leakage as well as pinpointing its time and location.
The system uses several leak detection methods:
- pressure wave analysis
- volumetric balance analysis
- pressure profile analysis
Pressure wave analysis is used for the quick identification of small leaks with high precision.
The concept behind this method is to analyze the propagation of waves of pressure drop in the pipeline. To monitor the pressure waves, the supervised telemechanics station is equipped with two LDS pressure sensors that are connected to the leak detection unit.
The unit analyzes the signals from the sensors, detects the pressure drop waves and determines their direction and transit time. Using a GPS receiver for synchronization makes it possible to record the moment of passage of the wave with great precision. Information about detected waves is delivered to the control point via the telemechanics system. Based on the nature of the wave propagation in the pipeline, the LDS server analyzes the information received and determines that there is a leak, the time of its occurrence, and its exact coordinates.
Volumetric balance analysis and pressure profile analysis are parametric methods. They use information from flow and pressure sensors located on the pipeline and do not require the installation of any additional equipment. These methods make it possible to detect the occurrence and location of medium to large leaks based on analysis of the change in certain technological parameters.