Leakage from pipelines
The structural integrity of pipelines used to transport petrochemicals, biofuels, waste or other liquids over long distances is essential to minimise adverse environmental impacts. Underground electrical lines also require the use of a coolant, which is typically injected with a tracer gas such as a perfluorocarbon to make it easier to identify leaks.
Factors causing pipeline leakage are numerous, and include:
- Landslides and earthquakes.
- Severe weather.
- Unauthorised extraction.
- Corrosion or metal fatigue.
Continuous monitoring of pipelines is therefore essential in order to minimise leaks of hazardous materials. Alongside methods based on identifying discrepancies in pipeline flows, chemical monitoring can also be used to precisely identify the section of pipeline affected and allow rapid remedial action to be taken.
What Markes can offer
Pumped or passive sampling directly onto sorbent tubes can be carried out using a specialist soil sampler such as Markes’ VOC-Mole, with analysis by thermal desorption (TD)–GC–MS (for example, using Markes’ UNITY or TD-100 thermal desorbers).
Thermal desorption equipment such as Markes’ TT24-7 near-real-time continuous sampler can also be employed in mobile laboratories for rapid assessment at the site of a leak.
- For more information on the application of TD technology to contaminated land, see Application Note 029.