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1 Copyright 2012 by ASME

CONTINUOUS REAL-TIME PIPELINE DEFORMATION, 3D POSITIONING AND


GROUND MOVEMENT MONITORING ALONG THE SAKHALIN-KHABAROVSK-
VLADIVOSTOK PIPELINE


Carlos Borda
Omnisens
Morges, Switzerland
Marc Nikls
Omnisens
Morges, Switzerland
Etienne Rochat
Omnisens
Morges, Switzerland


Alexander Grechanov
Laser Solutions
Moscow, Russia
Alexander Naumov
Laser Solutions
Moscow, Russia
Valeriy Velikodnev
North European Gas Pipeline
Project Company
Moscow, Russia


ABSTRACT
Operating in remote regions, Russian pipelines not only
are subjected to harsh environmental conditions, but also in
some of their sections to seismic activity. In order to secure
these assets integrity, monitoring is mandatory.
Due to the long distances to be monitored and to the linear
nature of these pipelines, distributed fiber optic sensing is the
only solution to provide remote monitoring operation with
accurate localization of events. In some cases, it can even take
advantage of the telecommunication fibers laid along the
pipelines to minimize installation cost.
A complete and commercially available solution based on
the DITEST Asset Integrity Monitoring (AIM) system
combines strain and temperature measurement over 100s
kilometers at meter spatial resolution with dedicated fiber optic
cables specifically developed for strain, temperature and
ground movement measurement to provide continuous
information on any abnormal pipeline behavior, including leak,
intrusion, excessive tube deformation and seismic activity.
This scalable monitoring solution was adopted to monitor
the most critical areas of the Sakhalin-Khabarovsk-Vladivostok
pipeline route, which crosses 32 Active Tectonic Faults (ATF)
zones. A combination of pipeline deformation monitoring,
ground movement detection and leak detection is used to
monitor these critical pipeline regions. The early knowledge of
abnormal events allows the pipeline owner/operator to take
preventive mitigation measures in response to these critical
geohazards.
NOMENCLATURE
AIM: Asset Integrity Monitoring
ATF: Active Tectonic Faults
BOTDA: Brillouin Optical Time Domain Analysis
DITEST: Distributed Temperature and Strain Sensing
Technique
FO: Fiber Optic
FIMT: Fiber In Metal Tube
IEC: International Electrotechnical Committee
ITU: International Telecommunication Union
SAT: Site Acceptance Test
SBS: Stimulated Brillouin Scattering
SCADA: Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition
SMC: Strain Monitoring Cable
SSL Stainless Steel
SW: Software
TMC: Temperature Monitoring Cable
INTRODUCTION
The growing demand for energy supply leads operators to
explore other markets and construct new massive
infrastructures. Pipelines are key elements of the energy supply
chain and are subject to harsh environmental and geological
hazards. In addition to this, seismic activity adds an extra
challenge that becomes a serious threat to pipeline integrity.
Such is the case of the Sakhalin-Khabarovsk-Vladivostok
pipeline, which will enable gas supply to extensive industrial
Russian customers in several Far East regions (such as the
Khabarovsk, Primorsky Krais, Jewish Autonomous District and
Proceedings of the 2012 9th International Pipeline Conference
IPC2012
September 24-28, 2012, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
IPC2012-90476
2 Copyright 2012 by ASME
Sakhalin District). Moreover, this long pipeline becomes a key
element of the international export route to the Asian-Pacific
countries.
This Siberian transmission pipeline is subject to
considerable geohazard likelihood. Apart from swamp areas,
soil freezing and thawing as seasons change, the pipeline also
endures several unstable ground areas due to high seismic
activity (Sakhalin Island), as well as to Active Tectonic Faults
(ATF) zones in its route.


FIGURE 1 SAKHALIN-KHABAROVSK-
VLADIVOSTOK PIPELINE ROUTE MAP

Due to the length and size of this gas pipeline, point
sensors are not sufficient. The fiber optic based DITEST AIM
(Distributed Temperature and Strain Asset Integrity
Monitoring) has been selected, due to its scalability, as one of
the main monitoring systems in this project. This monitoring
system consists of a central server that collects measurements
generated by Brillouin Optical Time Domain Analysers
(BOTDA) known as DITEST interrogators located along the
pipeline. The gathered measurements are processed against pre-
set alarms levels and alarms are triggered when anomalous
behaviours are detected. Due to the early stage detection of
events, engineers/operators can evaluate the situation and take
preventive measures [2].
Pipeline deformation measurement and 3D positioning are
achieved through sets of cascaded fibre optic strain cable
sensors directly attached to the pipeline and connected to the
DITEST units via optical switches. The sensor cables were
placed at optimum positions in a total of approximately 26 km
of pipeline over the 32 ATF zones. This configuration provides
control of eventual pipeline stressed-deformed condition and its
spatial movement. In addition, surrounding seismic areas with a
total length of 92 km are monitored with strain and temperature
fiber optic sensor cables, which are laid in the ground adjacent
to the pipeline for ground movement detection.

FO MONITORING TECHNOLOGY

Physical principle
The Omnisens DITEST relies on Brillouin Optical Time
Domain Analysis (BOTDA). BOTDA uses stimulated Brillouin
scattering (SBS) in single-mode fibers. Brillouin scattered light
encountered a frequency shift proportional to both temperature
and strain variations. This shift can be measured by analyzing
the interaction in standard optical fibers between a pump
lightwave (pulse) and a counter-propagating probe lightwave
(continuous). Typically, the Brillouin frequency shift at ambient
temperature of ITU G.652 fibers is about 10.85 GHz at 1.55 m
and varies with strain and temperature coefficients of 0.05
MHz/c and 1 MHz/
o
C respectively. This linear relationship
makes it an easy method for sensing mechanical and thermal
effects, whilst the pulse nature of the pump lightwave allows
accurate localization (time of flight measurement) and defines
spatial resolution (pulse duration).

Further details on the measuring unit configuration and
fiber sensitivity to strain and temperature can be found in
Nikls et al. works [4] [5] [6].
For efficient and accurate measurement, the analyzers must
use specifically designed sensing cables.


FIGURE 2 - SCATERED LIGHT REPRESENTATION

Strain measurement cables
Strain Measurement Cables (SMC) are robust fiber optic
cables specifically designed for distributed strain monitoring
applications. Unlike telecommunication fiber optic cables, the
SMC design allows the cable strain to be transferred to the
optical fiber, which in turn can be detected and monitored by
the DITEST interrogators. Mechanical and optical
characteristics of SMC cables are in compliance with IEC 794-
1 Optical Fiber Cables Specifications.
Amid the available strain measurement cables in the
market, the SMC-3 and SMC-4 cable versions were selected for
ground movement and pipeline deformation respectively. Both

Russia
Sakhalin
Japan
China
North
Korea
3 Copyright 2012 by ASME
cable designs are based on a FIMT structure, depicted in
FIGURE 3, where the fiber is embedded in a Stainless Steel
(SSL) tube. Due to their design, the cables are resistant to
crushing and folding and also have excellent rodent protection.
The SMC-3 has a corrugated surface and integrates an
SSL wires armoring, which increases its elastic stiffness EA
(see TABLE 1). Those characteristics turn it into an optimum
candidate for direct burial ground movement applications.


FIGURE 3 - SMC-3 CABLE STRUCTURE

FIGURE 4 illustrates the behavior of SMC-3 and SMC-4
cables. Due to its intrinsic FIMT nature and materials, the
SMC-3 and SMC-4 present a linear elastic region and a
logarithmic elasto-plastic region.


FIGURE 4 STRAIN TEST RESULTS [3]

The elasto-plastic region is not an issue for ground
movement applications (SMC-3) since during the development
of ground movements the strain level is expected to increase
monotonically [3]. However, this imposes strain limitations to
the linear response range for pipeline deformation monitoring
cables (SMC-4), for which bidirectional movements are
possible. In addition, SMC-4 cable must be sufficiently robust
and compatible with installations requirements and must have
negligible elastic stiffness compared to the rigidity of the
pipeline. The SMC-4 low elastic stiffness EA and the high yield
limit
y
(see TABLE 1) turn it into a first choice sensor for
pipeline deformation monitoring.

TABLE 1 - CABLE PROPERTIES [3]
Cable type SMC-3 SMC-4
Metallic protection Yes Yes
Diameter d 6.8mm 3.2mm
Surface Corrugated Smooth
Elastic stiffness EA 500kN 56kN
Yield limit
y
2000 6000

Ground movement detection
Geohazards or ground movements are recognized by the
pipeline industry as major threats to pipelines. A variety of
natural geohazards, namely geotechnic, hydrotechnic and
tectonic can significantly affect the integrity of pipelines [7][1].
The BOTDA technique for geotechnical monitoring is based on
the measurement of strain along a sensing fibre, or strain
measurement cable (SMC). And strain is effectively the
parameter that can be monitored to detect a landslide [8][9].
Depending on pipeline and hence SMC orientation, three
directions of soil displacements can induce a measurable strain
increase, as illustrated in FIGURE 5. These soil motions are
identified as longitudinal and lateral displacements, the third
displacement being a combination of the others two.


FIGURE 5 - SCHEMATIC REPRESENTATION OF
LATERAL DISPLACEMENT INDUCED STRAIN ON
FIBRE OPTIC CABLE

SMC Longitudinal displacement induced by ground
motion along the pipeline axis is detected with a high
efficiency. In fact, very small displacement can be detected in
the axial direction as the fiber strain response is longitudinal [5]
[9]. In the case of a lateral motion, the soil displacement must
be transferred into an axial strain on the SMC [5][9]. In fact,
when a landslide occurs, the shear interface between the
sections which do not move and the section of land which
slides down is submitted to strain as illustrated in FIGURE 5.
The conversion from lateral displacement to fiber longitudinal
strain can be understood as follows. Based on the schematics
of FIGURE 5, one sees that the original section d of cable is
submitted to a constant strain c, whereas the rest of the cable
remains strain free. The cable elongation Ad depends on the
lateral displacement L and the strain c is simply given by

( ) 1 1
2
+ =
A
= d L
d
d
c
(1)

Transition zone Transition zone Landslide Stable ground Stable ground
d
L
d+Ad
Cable
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where the ratio L/d provides information about the
magnitude of the cable displacement [1].
Any combination of longitudinal and lateral displacements
can be detected as the DITEST measures both strain induced
motions with sufficient sensitivity. Note that vertical
settlements push down the sensing cable similarly to the lateral
displacement, inducing measurable elongation by the DITEST.
The transmission of strain from the soil to the SMC
improves proportionally to the burial depth and the soil
compaction. Another way to improve even more this
transmission is to use cable corrugation and/or ground anchors.
More details on slippage of the cable at several depths and on
the usage of corrugated surface and ground anchors can be
found in [3].

Pipeline deformation monitoring
ATF zones present considerable geohazard likelihood,
which can produce for instance damageable upheaval buckling
[10]. This can be mitigated through specific protective
measures. One of them is the pipeline laying technique which
enables pipeline relocation in the ground. This relative freedom
of the pipeline is achieved by a dry sandy cushion layer with
incorporated drainage system, which ensures a considerable
displacement freedom to the pipeline, as illustrated in FIGURE
7. In addition to this and in order to forecast pipeline behavior
in such challenging areas, direct strain monitoring of the
pipeline is used. Although more complex and costly, from
installation and data treatment point of view, this technique
becomes more efficient than single ground movement
monitoring, as direct pipeline strain is measured. For this
reason, SMC cables are directly attached to the pipeline.


FIGURE 6 PIPELINE CROSS-SECTION WITH
STRAIN SENSORS AND COORDINATE SYSTEM XYZ

The configuration chosen for the installation consisted of
3 SMC-V4 set at 9, 12 and 3 oclock positions, as depicted in
FIGURE 6, and enables to control the state of deformation of
pipeline walls, which is considered a key parameter for safe
operation of the pipeline.
An additional benefit of such installation technique is the
ability to compute pipeline deformation repositioning in space,
i.e., 3-D modeling.


FIGURE 7 - SMC SENSOR GLUED TO THE PIPELINE
(EXAMPLE OF ATF ZONE SANDY CUSHION LAYER)

The computation of pipeline displacement affected by
ground movements is performed on the assumption that the
pipeline is free of sectional and torsional strains. These
assumptions are based on the following: Firstly, the main
objective of monitoring system is to trace an elementary
problematic segment of strain evolution at its earliest stage
prior to pipeline buckling and associated strain (small
deformation assumption). Secondly, the pipeline geometry and
construction technique used in ATF zones ensures the absence
of torsional strain (design assumption).
The adopted local orthogonal coordinate system is
displayed in FIGURE 6 and FIGURE 8, where X is aligned
with the pipeline axis and Y and Z axis define the plane
perpendicular to the pipeline axis.




5 Copyright 2012 by ASME

FIGURE 8 - PIPELINE ELEMENTARY SECTION
DISPLACEMENT

An elementary section of the pipeline is represented by the
segment AB. Assuming that strain induces a shift of that
segment to points A and B correspondingly, point A
displacement can be represented by the vector

, whose
projections are A
x
, A
y
and A
z
, as presented in FIGURE 8.
The information on strain distribution originated by the
three SMCs designated as c
1
, c
2
and c
3
, and mapped on the
monitoring system allows computing strain elongation of the
pipeline c and its induced curvature k, as follows:

2
2 1
+
= , (1)
( )
1 2
1
2
1
0z 0z
+
D
k
D
+ k = k
z

|
.
|

\
|
, (2)
( )
1 2
1
2
3
0y 0y
+
D
k
D
+ k = k
y

|
.
|

\
|
, (3)

Such computation can be simplified when the monitoring
section of pipeline is approximately rectilinear, which
corresponds to:

1
2
0
<<
D
k , (4)
sin( ) <<1
, (5)

where k
0
is the initial curvature of the pipeline and the
angle o is defined by the pipeline axis and the imaginary line
between the beginning and the end of monitored section.
The conditions described by (4) and (5) are met by the
majority of deformation monitored sections of the pipeline. So,
in this case formulae (2) and (3) are simplified and coordinates
XYZ can be considered unaltered along the entire length of the
monitored section. Thus, knowing the initial curvature of the
pipeline and resolving equations (2) to (5) yields to the
differential equations (6), which enable to compute the
displacement of a pipeline elementary section in the plan
perpendicular to the pipeline axis.

( )
( )

=
A

=
A
1
2
1
2
1
z
2
2
3
y
2
2
+

D
k =
dx
d
+

D
k =
dx
d
z
y
, (6)

To compute displacement in the pipeline axis, the
definition of pipeline tensile strain is introduced, which
represents the ratio of change in length of a pipeline elementary
section:

=
A
'
B
'
AB
AB
. (7)

Deriving to infinitely small differences and using (3), the
following equation for longitudinal displacement is obtained:

2
2 1
+
=
dx
d
x
. (8)

Boundary conditions required for differential equations
(6) and (8) are given by the sensor installation in the ATF zone.
In fact, sensors are installed on a length which significantly
exceeds the area of possible ground movements. Thus, the
pipeline at the edge of the monitoring section can be considered
fixed and consequently as boundary conditions for equations
(6) and (8). By this means, the configuration chosen for sensors
installation enables to compute the pipeline displacement in a
local orthogonal coordinate system solving equations (2) and
(4).
By applying these formulae exposed, one can efficiently
perform pipeline deformation monitoring and 3D positioning.

MONITORING SYSTEM ARCHITECTURE
The foundation soils supporting the pipeline are subjected
to consequent loss of stability. Ground movements are
recognized as the ultimate cause submitting the trunk pipeline
to large strain, which may result in buckling and consequent
disaster [10]. The pipeline structure, being stiffer than the soil
to a certain extent, resists the impact of ground movements so
that displacement or deformation only occurs above exceeding
threshold values. Therefore, ground movement monitoring
enables to record the detrimental effects of ground movement at
an early stage in order to take preventative measures related to
ground reinforcement and pipeline strain relief. It is regarded as
an early warning signal for potential threats to the pipeline
integrity and is less costly than pipeline direct deformation
measurement. Thus it has been implemented on extended
6 Copyright 2012 by ASME
sections of the pipeline route whilst direct pipeline strain
monitoring is restricted to highly critical zones.
Therefore, ground movement monitoring is complemented
by the more sensitive direct pipeline deformation monitoring
for all ATF zones identified along the pipeline route.
The main purpose of the system schematized in FIGURE
9 is to perform:
- Pipeline deformation monitoring with 3D-positioning
- Ground movement detection
- Leak detection in ATF zones
Details on leak detection using distributed temperature
monitoring can be found in literature [9][12]. An example of a
ground movement monitoring and leak detection system is the
proven FO monitoring system currently safeguarding Peru
PLNG pipeline [2].
Pipeline deformation monitoring is achieved through the
measurement of SMC directly bounded to the pipeline, whilst
the change of strain on SMC-3 cables laid in the ground
adjacently to the pipeline will signal ground movement.
Leak detection in ATF zones is accomplished by the
temperature cable installed on the top of the pipeline as
depicted in FIGURE 6. This cable also serves as temperature
compensation for the pipeline strain measurement, thus
increasing the measurement accuracy of direct pipeline strain.
The same principle is used to improve the accuracy of strain
measurement in the ground movement SMC, where
temperature is measured on a standard telecom cable, which
serves for communication and link to GPS transceivers and
point strain-gages.


FIGURE 9 - FO MONITORING SYSTEM
ARCHITECTURE

Strain and temperature measurement are performed by the
DITEST interrogator, where each DITEST covers up to a
maximum of 2 ATF zones. After pre-processing, strain and
temperature measurements are sent to the DITEST AIM server.
The measurements gathered by the DITEST AIM SW are then
post-processed according to previously configured alarm
thresholds, prompting alarms if abnormal developments are
detected.
The DITEST AIM SW platform can be customized in
order to comply with specific project requirements. For the
present case, due to the dimension of the project, it has been
optimized in terms of processing time and interface.

INSTALLATION

Ground movement detection
To avoid the slippage of the SMC sensor in the soil, a
combination of a corrugated cable, SMC-3, and ground anchors
are used. For this project, a pitch of 10 m will be used between
each ground anchor.
The classical version of ground anchors is rigidly fastened
to the SMC sensor. However, for this project, a special anchor
with a latch mechanism has been designed (patent pending).
See FIGURE 10.


FIGURE 10 - GROUND ANCHOR ATTACHED TO SMC-
3 CABLE (PATENT PENDING)

In the case of large ground movements, when excessive
loads close to the tensile limit of the SMC sensor are generated,
the ground anchor snaps off from the SMC sensor, protecting it
from breakup. In more detail, this construction features the
detachment of anchor flange and not the entire anchor.
Eventually, the ground monitoring in this section will become
less sensitive, yet its integrity and functionality are maintained.

Pipeline deformation monitoring
In addition to the SMC requirements related to the sensing
(see previous section), the SMC must also have good chemical
and mechanical resistance, which eases its installation.
The installation technique was developed bearing in mind
a maximum transmission of strain from the pipeline surface to
the SMC and the DITESTs spatial resolution. Therefore, the
measured distribution of tensile/compression strain of the
bounded SMC will be equal to the strain distribution verified
on the homologous pipeline outer generating lines.
A robust bonding of the SMC to the pipeline was achieved
by using a special gluing technique. Since the external layer of
the pipeline protective coating is made of high-density
polyethylene, a dedicated polyethylene hot-melt glue adhesive

DITEST 1
Optical Switch
OS-N
DITEST AIM Server
Display
SCADA
TCP/IP Network
Ground Movement
SMC
Pipeline
Deformation SMC
Temperature fibers
DITEST 2
Optical Switch
OS-N
Ground Movement
SMC
Pipeline
Deformation SMC
Temperature fibers
... DITEST N
Optical Switch
OS-N
Ground Movement
SMC
Pipeline
Deformation SMC
Temperature fibers
7 Copyright 2012 by ASME
was used. Additionally, a polymeric tape bonded over the strain
sensor was used to protect the sensor and increase its adhesion
resistance. An installed section is shown in FIGURE 11.


FIGURE 11 - SMC SENSOR GLUED ON THE PIPELINE


FIGURE 12 - SMC SENSOR GLUED TO THE PIPELINE
(DETAIL)

Installation quality control was carried out with the use of
a DITEST interrogator in addition to standard attenuation
control procedure. These actions were taken after every single
installation of strain sensors on each pipeline monitoring
section. Results confirmed proper installation of the sensors.
FIGURE 13 for instance shows a straight pipeline section with
equal strain level on all 3 sensors (bottom lines) and a flat
line corresponding to the temperature measurement (shown
here below prior to conversion into strain and temperature
units).


FIGURE 13 - PROCESSED BRILLOUIN STRAIN AND
TEMPERATURE MEASUREMENTS

Several methods were developed to perform the
installation of the SMC sensors on the pipeline. A first manual
method using classic hand tools allowed installing up to 200
meters of SMC sensor (or ~70 meters of pipeline) per shift by
team of 3 persons. The described installation technique was
applied for pipeline deformation monitoring of 32 sections of
the pipeline, with a total length of 21 km, i.e., 63km of SMC.
Considering the application of the same technique to
future projects and looking for optimization, semi-automated
and fully automated installation techniques were also
developed.


FIGURE 14 SEMI-AUTOMATED SMC SENSOR
INSTALLING MACHINNE

The semi-automated version depicted in FIGURE 14 is
more appropriate for the installation of short lengths. This semi-
automated gluing station does not imply substantial financial
loads on its transportation and maintenance, whilst significantly
8 Copyright 2012 by ASME
improving the installation quality and simplifying SMC
alignment.
As an alternative, the fully automated gluing station was
designed for large scale installations (see FIGURE 15). The
automated gluing station enables the simultaneous installation
of 3 strain sensors set on the pipeline at the 9, 12 and 3 oclock
positions. The developed device reaches an installation speed of
5 m of pipe per minute, including pipe surface cleaning
treatment, pipe warm-up, hot-melt-adhesion, attachment of
strain sensor with controllable tension, attachment of the
protective polyethylene tape and rolling of the protective tape.
The machine design also addresses complex features such as
auto-horizon and unassisted correction of its position on the
pipeline, preventing falls.
Maintenance of the automated station during installation
consists on a timely renewal of the expended drums, protective
tape and addition of hot-melt glue into the melting furnace of
the gluing machine. This consumables refill may be done
during operation. The final version will also include a
protection to weather conditions for unperturbed installation.


FIGURE 15 - FULLY AUTOMATED SMC SENSOR
INSTALLING PROTOTYPE

CONCLUSION
At the time of writing, the DITEST AIM system is in its
final installation phase whereas pipeline deformation sensor
cables have already been installed on the pipeline and
validated. DITEST monitoring system installation and
configuration will follow shortly. Final commissioning will
consist in configuring the AIM monitoring and alarming
software, which involves zone and alarm configuration, and
finally interface to the operators SCADA system prior to
performing the SAT (Site Acceptance Tests).
The described system constitutes by far the largest fiber
optic monitoring project involving pipeline deformation
monitoring, ground movement monitoring and temperature
measurement. The continuous real-time monitoring of ground
movement, pipeline deformation with 3D positioning and leak
detection capability allows the operator to take actions at the
earliest stage, thus enabling timely risk mitigation and ensuring
pipeline integrity through the understanding of actual pipeline
structural conditions and geohazard threats.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The authors would like to warmly thank the cable
manufacturing company Brugg Kabel AG for the efficient
collaboration throughout the project, as well as Prof. A. Puzrin
and D. Hauswirth at the Institute of Geotechnical Engineering
at the Swiss Federal of Technology in Zurich and Dr. M. Iten
with the company Marmota for fruitful discussions on soil-
cable interaction. Furthermore, the authors would also like to
acknowledge the support of Gazprom VNIIGAZ, Gazprom
Invest Vostok and Giprogazcentr.

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9 Copyright 2012 by ASME
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