Leakproof pipeline design created by University of Calgary researchers
By Kyle Bakx, CBC News
In a basement laboratory at the University of Calgary, a pair of researchers say they have a solution to one of the key problems facing the oil and gas pipeline industry — spills.
The researchers say their system, which combines real-time monitoring and an outer layer around a pipeline, would better protect the environment and save the reputation of the industry by eliminating leaks — though it would come at a higher cost.
“We have a fully functional prototype that illustrates completely the feasibility of the technology,” said Martin Mintchev, an engineering professor at the University of Calgary.
Their design surrounds a pipeline with a larger pipe, made of steel or plastic. A space between the pipeline and the outer layer contains any leaks, and that’s also where a wireless monitoring system can immediately detect any spills, pinpoint the location and gauge the severity.
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The challenge now, said Mintchev, is “the will of the industry to innovate and invest in environmental protection issues.”
Written by By Kyle Bakx, CBC News