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Cathodic protection design

Cathwell contributes during the entire design phase for cathodic protection of underground pipelines.

Our scope covers concept studies, FEED studies, detailed design, fabrication, installation supervision and commissioning.

On-site survey

On-site survey provides vital basis for designing cathodic protection for buried pipelines. A scope of investigation would typically comprise:

  • Environmental considerations: Pipeline route inspection, soil resistivity profile, corrosivity, interfacial issues, topography, adjacent structure.
  • Integrity assessments: Interference issues, parallel power transmission lines, geomagnetic activity, shared corridor considerations.
  • Isolation and interface: Landfall areas, seawater crossings, terminal areas, pipe terminations and isolation joints.
  • Cathodic protection options: Locations of groundbed and/or linear anodes, test stations, control panels and remote control system.
Two corrosion engineers performing soil resistivity measurements where a pipeline route enter into a fabric terminal area. One engineer sitting with his hands on the measurement instrument and the other standing with his notebook.
Soil resistivity measurements

Corrosion protection philosophy, cathodic protection design specification and other pre-design documentation may be prepared for performance of the cathodic protection detail design.

Detail design

The on site investigation, detailed pipeline information and applicable standards (e.g. TR1161, ISO 15589-1 or similar) form the basis for designing the cathodic protection system; component details, locations of ICCP anodes, proper monitoring and possible remote operation system.

The scope of detail design would generally include material specifications and installation documentation.

ICCP system components

An ICCP system would typically include the following:

  • Control panels
  • Remote control and monitoring system
  • ICCP anodes
  • Reference electrodes
  • Monitoring coupons
  • Sacrificial anodes
  • Cables
  • Remote control devices

You may want to see the range of products for corrosion protecion of pipelines.

Installation & commissioning

Cathwell contributes with documentation of installation, supervision of work, commissioning and system configuration to ensure the system will perform as intended. Isolation joints should be tested as part of the commissioning.

The ICCP system should be controlled and re-adjusted after polarisation (transition from unprotected to protected pipeline surface).

Three sacrificial anodes in white cotton bags filled with backfill installed at the right side of three partly buried pipelines. Two site workers in orange rain coveralls inspecting the installed sacrificial anodes, and a diver is installing weight bags for cabling in the background.
Installation of cathodic protection for buried pipelines

Design request details – what we need to assist you

The following input is generally be of relevance for designing pipeline cathodic protection systems:

  1. Pipeline route and layout sketch, if available.
  2. Trench details (cross section layout).
  3. Pipeline dimensions (length, diameter, pipe branch).
  4. External coating details.
  5. Soil conditions and resistivity along the route.
  6. Surroundings in means of other buried metallic structures crossing or running nearby the pipeline route.
  7. Parallel power transmission lines.
  8. Isolation joint locations.
  9. Requested design lifetime.
  10. Specification to be applied, if any (e.g. TR1161, ISO 15589-1 or similar).

If all the above details are yet not available, we can of course assume and adjust as we go along.

Most design parameters can generally be obtained by pre-design investigations.

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