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American Journal of Engineering Research (AJER)

2015

American Journal of Engineering Research (AJER)


e-ISSN: 2320-0847 p-ISSN : 2320-0936
Volume-4, Issue-8, pp-64-74
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Research Paper

Open Access

Computer Aided Design (CAD) for Failure Analysis in a Crude


Oil and Gas Carbon Flow line
ALAO Kehinde T. 1, OLALERE Olusegun A.2,ADEYI Oladayo3,
OLADAPO Micheal A.4
1, 4

(Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.)


2
(Department of Industrial & Production Engineering, University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria)
3
(Department of Chemical Engineering. Landmark University Omu-Aran, Kwara State, Nigeria)

ABSTRACT: The failure analysis in flow lines comes to relevance in order to prevent the menace attached to
failures; financial losses, dangers to workers, and production breakdowns. Hence the materials used must be of
good mechanical properties, low cost and of wider availability.
The pressure distribution and stress analysis were estimated by varying the diameter and pressure drop in the
pipe. These were subsequently obtained from a set of mathematical models computed and displayed through the
use of a simulated computer aided design auto inventor-based software.
The results obtained from the Computer aided design showed the stress induced in pipe during failure. By
varying pressure the maximum operating pressures increases at constant diameter of pipe, with a corresponding
increase in pipe stress. It also shows the rate at which liquid flow through the pipe at varying maximum
operating pressures and diameter together. From result obtained also, the wall thickness of the pipe should not
be less than 0.25 inch (6.35mm)
This study helps to analyze oil pipeline failures in Nigeria with the aim to undertake a desk study to evaluate the
procedures for maintenance and contingency plans for addressing oil pipeline failures in Nigeria.
Keywords:Crude oil, computer-aided-design (CAD), failure analysis, pipeline (flow line), pressure drop
I.

INTRODUCTION

The failure of components and materials of most machines and machineries is one of the most dreaded
situations in any producing establishment due to the buoyant nature of the study. Hence there is a need for a
proper monitoring with utmost scrutiny in the design and production of pipes/flow lines used in oil and gas
industry in order to prevent distortion in oil and gas production. Distortion in production as regards piping is
generally induced by the failure of these pipes meeting up with proper design codes and criteria. They are
therefore said to be failing or to have failed, depending on the severity or discrepancy from design criteria
before the ultimate mode of failure-rupture. Pipelines are commonly made of carbon steels due their good
mechanical properties, low cost and wider availability. However, in spite of good properties exhibited by carbon
pipes, their resistance to corrosion is relatively low. Normally, as an oil well ages, the production of oil starts to
decline whereas water and gas flow rates tend to increase. The presence of high corrosive agents such as CO 2,
H2S and chlorine compounds dissolved in the fluids can therefore accelerate corrosion process inside the
pipeline. Hence, the impact of changes in fluid composition on a pipeline should be anticipated during
maintenance program. Oil leaks have been recently reported to occur at a horizontal crude oil subsea pipeline
after 27 years in service. During operation, crude oil was pumped from subsea wells into the horizontal pipeline
and crude oil was then flowed out from the pipeline directly into a long radius elbow section which turned the
crude oil flow vertically allowing the flow to pass through a riser for further processing in the platform [1].
Hence, failure analysis comes to relevance in order to prevent the menace attached to these fractures,
financial losses, dangers to workers and personnel, production breakdowns and also the likelihood to spark up
an epidemic. Failure analysis and design helps to maintain and give the piping systems drawing a predictive
forecast and thus a preventive maintenance strategy against possible causes of failures such as corrosion, sand

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erosion (depleting thickness of pipes from the inside), excessive stress in pipes, fluctuating pressure effects,
fatigue etc. These effects have posed perennial difficulties to the oil and gas industry, hence the untiring efforts
to always find new, workable techniques and methods into analyzing the flow line to designing possible
solutions.Furthermore, the enormous dividends generated from the oil and gas industry has helped put more
concern into the close monitoring of the pipes efficiency over a good period of time and thus reducing possible
hazards to a barest minimum. This research work will be encompassing; evaluation of crude oil flow parameters
such as pipe thickness, working pressure, oil flow pressure, temperature, stresses in pipes etc. and their relation
to each other using the carbon steel pipe alone as our case study.

II LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1

Preamble
Major pipelines across the world transport large quantities of crude oil, natural gas, and petroleum
products. These pipelines play a crucial role in providing needed fuels for sustaining vital functions such as
power generation, heating supply, and transportation. However, due to the hazardous properties of these
products transmitted, a ruptured pipeline presage serious environmental problems. This problem is further
compounded by the fact that many developing countries have not yet established proper guidelines and
standards for the design, construction, and operation of major oil pipelines. This study helps to analyze oil
pipeline failures in Nigeria with the aim to undertake a desk study to evaluate the procedures for its maintenance
and contingency plans for addressing oil pipeline failures in Nigeria. The risk associated with pipeline in terms
of safety of people, damage to the environment and loss of income has been a major concern to pipeline
integrity managers. Agbaeze (2000) mentioned his view on how to improve pipeline Integrity Management,
opining that pipeline operators can realize many benefits by implementing a data integration approach that will
enables integrity managers, risk assessment specialists and pigging engineers to view and analyze combined
information from disparate surveys and to increase the value of data by shaving it across the entire corporation
[2].
There have been a number of studies conducted by researchers on causes of oil pipeline failures in the
oil and gas industry. Ikporukpo and Chris, (1998) examined the causes of pipeline leaks versus pipeline
ruptures and the proportion for each. In failures resulting in product loss, leaks constituted 86.8 % of failures
and ruptures 13.2 %. Corrosion is the predominant cause of leaks. According to his findings, third party damage
is the leading cause of line ruptures. Since 1994, 191 hits were recorded, and these are not included as they did
not result in either leaks or ruptures. The hits equaled 47 % of all recorded third-party incidents for the years
1994-1997, demonstrating that approximately half of all third party incidents resulted in a pipeline failure.
Reference showed that about 50 % of third-party incidents resulted in loss of pipeline products [3]. The number
of internal corrosion failures for multiphase pipelines and discovered that internal corrosion failures increased
steadily while the number of external corrosion failures held steady. They stated for sour gas pipelines, internal
corrosion is the major cause of failure [4]. External corrosion failures have declined in recent years, possibly as
the result of improved coatings and increased inspection. Of the sour line failures, about 86 % were leaks and 14
% were ruptures. They used the latest technology in the fields of internal electronic inspection, metallurgy,
coatings, cathodic protection, and chemical inhibition. Nwankwo et al., (2012) and Odusola (2012) extensively
studied the effects of internal corrosion failures for natural gas pipelines which have generally been increasing.
Some "other" category which include high vapour pressure liquids, low vapour pressure liquids, fuel gas, and all
others showed failure rates to be relatively few and the causes to be relatively random. Ilman (2014) worked on
subsea crude oil steel pipeline oil leakage whose failure was caused by electrochemical corrosion combined with
mechanical process known as flow induced corrosion [1].
2.2
Flow of crude oil and causes of leaks and ruptures in flow lines
Oil pipelines transport liquid petroleum products from one point to another. There are generally three
types of oil pipelines:
Gathering lines: travel short distances, collect unprocessed oil products from wells and deliver them to
oil storage tanks. Pipes range from 4 to 12 inches in diameter
Feeder lines:move product from oil storage tanks and processing plants to the transmission pipelines.
They are generally bigger than gathering lines, but smaller than transmission lines.
Transmission lines:can be up to 48 inches in diameter and transport oil and associated products from
producing to consuming areas, including across provincial and international boundaries. The oil is
piped to refineries where it is refined into petroleum products.

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Source: Amec Paragon, (2013)


Figure 1: Represent the flow line, gathering line and the transmission line
Internal corrosion, external corrosion, external intervention (for example: hit by a truck or back-hoe),
soil displacement such as landslides, material defects, and system malfunctions (for example: operating over
design pressure) can cause leaks and ruptures. Based on incidents reported to the National Energy Board (2010),
the majority of leaks are related to pump stations and valves, rather than the body of the pipeline. In general,
corrosion accounts for about 20% to 30% of pipeline leaks.
2.3

Failure Analysis
The flow line itself can be classified to be a pressure vessel in that it works under certain service
pressure requirement and hence a vessel because it is enclosed and used as a leak proof transport medium from
one end to another. Vessel failures can be grouped into four categories which describe why a vessel failure
occurs; failure can also be grouped into types of failures, which describe how the failure occurs. Each failure has
a why and how to its history. It may have failed through corrosion fatigue or because the wrong material was
selected. The different Categories of Failures were analyzed by Ilman and Kusmono (2014).
Failure due to material: Selection of flow line materials is important so as to prevent reaction of the
hydrocarbon element with the internal surface of the flow line thus, preventing corrosion and to be able
to withstand other external factors. When selecting material, consideration must be given to materials
with good market availability, documented fabrication, service performance, operating condition,
corrosion monitoring possibilities and compatibility to other materials to be used.
Failure due to design: For the design of a pipeline, the overall thickness, addition of intermediate leak
proof sheath, increasing the moment of inertia to withstand pressure and also selecting cathodic
protection system design to prevent corrosion etc to make the overall flowline last longer.
Failure due to fabrication: When fabricating, favourable combination of weldability, strength,
corrosion resistance together with the condition of the environment in which the pipeline will be
installed must be carefully considered. Also, when fabricating, the material must be subjected to
pressure testing to detect failures related to welding, strength etc.
Failure due to service: Regularly scheduled inspections, evaluations and testing by qualified personnel
are critical part of preventing failure. Their purpose is to prevent, predict and readily detect
discharges/leakages. So active and regular service check must be done on this flow line to prevent
failure.

III RESERCH METHOD AND MATERIAL


The research work involved a full understanding of what failure is all about. To this effect there is the need to
have an overview of the root cause of failure, the methods used in this study involves the following;
1. Library and online research
2. Questionnaire survey
3. Oral interview
4. Physical observation and mathematical model
5. Computer Aided Design
3.1
Field Survey
In order to examine the root cause of failure, several cases of failure that have occurred were critically looked
into. Selected team of field workers, inspection officers were posed with questions based on failure in flow lines.
Some of the questions asked are highlighted below.

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How long was the part in service?


What was the nature of the stresses at time of failure?
Was the part subjected to an overload?
Was the part properly installed?
Was it subjected to service abuse?
Were there any changes in the environment?
Was the part properly maintained?
What was the service/ normal pressure of the crude oil coming from the well and going out of the well?
How and where did the failure occur?
What is the primary cause of the failure (lack): corrosion, dent, human sabotage inadequate service
demand etc?
What existing failure analysis instrumentation do they have or work with?

Field testing permitted the evaluation of the effects of materials, design and fabrication variables on
performance of the under-controlled conditions, by combining the information from tests with the results from
analysis; a clear picture of the causes of failure was obtained.
While studying failure, care was taken to avoid destroying important evidence. Detailed studies usually require
documentation of service history (time, temperature loading environment etc) along with chemical analysis,
photomicrographs and the likes.
3.2
Computer Aided Design (CAD)
Use of computer programme C++ and Auto Inventor was extensively used in this project work. C ++ was used to
analyze data gotten from industry to give a better operating pressure with a perfect diameter and to monitor the
pressure drop along the pipeline. The solid work design shows the effect of stress caused on the pipe due to
variation of operating pressure and diameter of the pipe.
3.3. Mathematical model for stress analysis through computational method`
The flowline thickness varies from different sections to another due to variation in pressure and temperature.
The thickness of the flow line from the well to the flow station and finally to the refinery or terminals must not
be minimum to the one needed for a specified pressure and temperature.

PD
C
2( SE Py )

tm

(1)

Where,
tm= Minimum flow line wall thickness (in) allowable on inspection
P=Maximum internal service pressure gauge (1b/in2)
D=Outside diameter of pipe (in)
S=Maximum allowable stress in material due to internal pressure (1b/in2) )
E=Quality factor
Y=A coefficient, values for which is in the standard code
C=Allowance for threading mechanical strength and corrosion (in) with values listed in the standard code.
3.3.1 Stresses in Members
The stresses in members are shown in equations (2) and (3) below.

(2)
(3)

Where,

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Km= spring constant of member


Fm= tensile force in the bolt S
Um= the amount by which the member is extended when it is loaded from zero to f m
Sm=Stress in member
Am=Area of the member
3.3.2
Pressure drop in pipelines
The pressure drop in pipe, due to friction is a function of the fluid flow-rate, fluid density and viscosity, pipe
diameter, pipe surface roughness and the length of the pipe. It can be calculated using the following equation
below

Pf = 8f ( )
(4)
2
Pf = Pressure drop, N/m2
f = Friction factor
L = Pipe length, m
di = Pipe inside diameter, m
= fluid density, Kg/m3
u = fluid velocity, m/s

IV RESULT AND ANALYSIS


4.1

Data Presentation
For an effective assessment of the failure in flowline, a computer software progamme was written using
C++, and values were generated for the analysis. These programmes were used to implement the sets of
equations that were supplied. Data generated were analyzed and a design simulation was shown using AutoCAD
inventor. Hence, applicable/workable failure indices were obtained, practical enough to predict the possible
period which failure may occur, conditions under which it may occur and period of tolerance before the ultimate
mode of failure rupture.
4.2

Parameter values
The following data were collected from various oil fields/oil companies within the country. These data
are those analyzed and results presented in subsequent sections.
Table 1: Data of Parameter Values from Oil Field
Type of system Hazardous liquid
Accident type: Pipe failure and leak
Material release: Crude oil API 35.6
Maximum operating pressure (MOP)
Outside diameter of pipe (D)
Specified minimum yield strength (S)
Normal wall thickness of pipe (T)
Design factor (quality factor E) (F)
Maximum depth of corroded area
(C)
Pit depth percentage (C/t)
Constant for maximum allowable
Pressure (G)
Safe maximum (derated) pressure for corroded area (Pd)
Fluid velocity(U)
Friction factor (f)
Year in Service period of pipe is between (1993 2001)

Value

Units

800
12.750
42,000
0.25
0.72
0.080
32.0
3.003
11,100
0.4
0.07
6

Psi
In
Psi
In
In
%
Psi
m/s

Years

Source: ICPI, Abuja (2012)


From the data provided

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4.3
Calculations and Analysis
Using stress analysis through computational method
Using equation 3. And analyzing the data through C ++ application
t m=

2 +

+C

(5)

Making S the subject of the formular;


S=

2( )
2 m

(6)

MOP P = 800 Psi

D = 12.750 in
tm = 0.250 in
E = from the data table(F Design factor) = 0.72
Y = 0.4
C = 0.080
Calculation from our C++ application shows the amount of stress exacted on the pipe during the time of failure as
41222.22ib/in2

Plate 1: C++ programmed showing the calculation of stress exacted on the pipe at 800 psi

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The analyzes of the stress induced in the pipe by varying both pressure and diameter at a constant maximum
operating Pressure of 800 Psi is given in table 2 below.
Table 2: Results Generated at Constant pressure and varying pressures and diameters
MOP
Diameter of pipe (in)
Stress induced in the pipe (ib/in2)
800

28967.3202

800

10

32235.2941

800

11

35503.2679

800

12

38771.2418

800

12.75

41222.2222

Table 3: Results Generated at a constant diameter of 11 inch


MOP
Diameter of pipe (in)
Stress induced in the pipe (ib/in2)
700

11

31065.3594

750

11

33284.3137

800

11

35503.2679

850

11

37722.2222

900

11

39941.1764

Table 4: Results Generated at a constant diameter of 12 inch


MOP
Diameter of pipe (in)

Stress induced in the pipe (ib/in2)

700

12

33924.8366

750

12

36348.0392

800

12

38771.2418

850

12

41194.4444

900

12

43617.6471

Table 5: Results Generated At a constant diameter of 12.75 inch


MOP

Diameter of pipe (in)

Stress induced in the pipe (ib/in2)

700

12.75

36069.4444

750

12.75

38645.8333

800

12.75

41222.2222

850

12.75

43798.6111

900

12.75

46375.0000

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50000
40000

36069.4444

38645.8333

41222.2222

43798.6111

2015

46375

30000

MOP

20000

Diameter of pipe (in)


Stress induced in pipe (ib/in)

10000

900
12.75

850
12.75

800
12.75

750
12.75

700
12.75

Figure 2: Stress induced in a pipe of diameter 12.75 inch and MOP of 700 Psi 900 Psi
45000
40000
35000
30000
25000
20000
15000
10000
5000
0

31065.3594

33284.3137

35503.2679

37722.2222

39941.1764

MOP
Diameter of pipe (in)
Stress induced in pipe (ib/in)

900
11

850
11

800
11

750
11

700
11

Figure 3: Stress induced in a pipe of diameter 11 inch and MOP of 700 Psi 900 Psi

50000
40000
33924.8366

30000

36348.0392

38771.2418

41194.4444

43617.6471

MOP
Diameter of pipe (in)

20000

Stress induced in pipe (ib/in)


10000

900
12

850
12

800
12

750
12

700
12

Figure 4: Stress induced at a constant diameter of 12 inch and MOP of 700 Psi 900 Psi.

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Plate 6: Simulation of the effect of pressure at 6.2052 MPa (900 psi) on an 11 inch pipe

4.4

Pressure drop calculation

Using equation 3.6 and using the C++ application


Pf = 8f ( )

(7)

f = 0.07 s
L = 1000m (1Km)
di = 10.25 in
= 847 for API 35.6
u = 0.4 m/s
The pressure that will be drop in the pipe in a distance of 1000m/1km will be 21.11 psi, therefore at
about 38 km at most, there should be a pressure booster in place to increase the pressure back to the maximum
operating pressure. Plate 7 shows the pressure drop calculation from the C ++ programme.

Plate 7: C++ Programme showing the pressure drops in a pipeline

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V. DISCUSSION
From the computer aided design (CAD) of the stress induced during failure, results were obtained by
varying both the pressure and diameter shows that at constant maximum operating pressure, the diameter of the
pipe diameter increases due to the density of the liquid stress induced. Hence, at constant diameter of 11 inch
(279 mm), 12 inch (305 mm), and 12.75 inch (324 mm), the higher the maximum operating pressure, the higher
the stress induced in the pipe.
The figure 2 shows the graphical representation of the stress induced between a diameters of 9inch-12inch at
constant maximum operating pressure of 800 psi (5.5158 Mpa) while figure 4.3 is the graphical representation
of stress induced at a constant diameter of 12inches and a maximum operating pressure of 700 psi (4.8263 Mpa)
- 900 psi (6.2052 Mpa). However, this varies the rate of stress difference at separate maximum operating
pressure value with graphical authentications.
The rate at which liquid flow through the pipe at varying maximum operating pressures and the representation
of stress induced at a constant diameter of 12.75 inches and maximum operating pressure of 700 psi 900 psi
were illustrated in figure 5.
The Plate 2 and 3 shows the simulation of the effect of pressure at 800 psi (5.5158 Mpa) on a 10 and 12 inch
pipe. This was extracted from the auto desk inventor, showing the increment of the pressure distribution in the
pipe. The design showed the pressure distribution in the 10 inch pipe and 12 inch pipe. For the 12 inch pipe, the
pipe experiences much pressure at the opening and edge. And plate 4, 5, and 6 show the simulation of the effect
of 700 psi, 800 psi and 900 psi on a pipe of 11inch diameter. It shows the pressure distribution in the pipe and
also shows that stress is much concentrated at the edge/opening of the pipe.

VI. CONCLUSION
The pressure distribution and stress analysis were estimated by varying the diameter and pressure drop in the
pipe. These were subsequently obtained from a set of mathematical models computed and displayed through the
use of simulated computer aided design auto inventor-based software.
The computer aided design showed the effect of the data analyzed (pressure and diameter) on the pipe and also
showed the overall effect on the pipe through simulation of the parameters given.
A level of dependence were obtained from the model and the results revealed their corresponding stress
according to the given operating parameters. Furthermore, it was authentically observed that at a pressure of 800
psi (5.5158 Mpa), the 10 inch (254 mm) -11 inch (279 mm) diameter pipe will be the most suitable for use, due
to the pressure distribution observed through the Auto Inventor design software.
Therefore, this study can be successfully employed in the selection of pipelines as it is interchangeably used in
this research work, as well as for other types of pipe specifically for crude oil, as long as the fluid properties for
the type of fluid to be carried and operating parameters are known. This study helps to analyze oil pipeline
failures in Nigeria with the aim to undertake a desk study to evaluate the procedures for its maintenance and
contingency plans for addressing oil pipeline failures in Nigeria

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