All pipelines and piping systems have valves to stop, separate or divert the product flow. If valves are leaking, it can result to dangerous situations. It is very important that valves are reliable and fit for purpose. There are many reasons why valves fail and can cause internal or external leaks. The most important reasons for failure are:
- Operating outside the design conditions
- Abrasive debris inside the pipeline
- Incorrect assembly or maintenance of the valve
- Wear of the seals
A gradual decrease in pressure usually indicates a leak is present. By isolating the valves, it is possible to pinpoint the problem. Depending on your specific situation, there are a few methods to detect internal and external leaks of a system.
If a seal is damaged the leak causes a noise that, if small enough, cannot be heard by the human ear. TECCURO uses an ultrasonic sound meter that will enhance and isolate the sound in such a way that also small leaks can be measured. Ultrasonic leak detection utilizes high-frequency sound produced by a pressurized gas escaping from a system to identify a leak. One of the biggest complications with an ultrasonic leak detector is the possibility of background interference.
Depending on the gas or fluid, systems which are tested during pre-commissioning are checked with hydrogen or helium as a tracer gas. After the system is pressurized and filled with a mixture, of the tracer gas and nitrogen, a detector will be used to quantify the leaks found. Operational systems can be measured with mobile gas detectors. Nowadays gas detection cameras provide a visual of the leaks in real-time, making it easier to pinpoint the source. Depending on the type of camera hydrocarbons and volatile organic compounds can be transferred into a visual image.
Based on your objective the TECCURO specialists can support you in selecting the right measurements to detect your leaks and keep your pipeline or system operational. Keep energy flowing.