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A new type of flow-based pipeline protection system (PPS) for the Gjoa field in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea will reduce pipeline costs and increase gas-transport pressure.

The process on which PPS is based has been developed and patented by Statoil.

Bjorge Safety Systems AS (BSS), the Norwegian agent of the company Hima Paul Hildebrandt, has implemented the PPS with the HIMA H51q safety system.

From 2010, the Gjoa field will export gas to the existing Flags pipeline to the UK (St Fergus) via a 130km-long connecting pipeline.

The export pressure in Gjoa is higher than the permitted pressure in St Fergus.

Since the Flags pipeline receives gas from many fields in the North Sea and there is a danger of gas hydrate formation at the Gjoa pipeline connection point, it was not feasible to put the PPS for Gjoa on a slave system in St Fergus.

The new PPS is a single-ended solution installed on the Gjoa platform.

Besides monitoring the pipeline-entry pressure, it also measures the flow and temperature in the pipeline.

All parameters are collected in the Hima safety-control system.

The ELOP II tool creates a flow profile that is simulated in a dynamic model to forecast the requisite shut-down scenarios and target values.

In the process the software uses various shut-down scenarios depending on the actual flow, pressure and temperature values.

The new PPS makes it possible to operate at a higher pressure and with higher flow rates in the pipeline.

The diameter of the Gjoa pipeline could then be reduced from 720 to 680mm, saving about EUR10m (GBP8.99m) for the Gjoa licence partners.

Hima Paul Hildebrandt

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