Department: Features

U.S. Producers of Carbon Steel Flanges File Trade Petitions Against India, Spain and Italy

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Two leading producers of carbon steel flanges, Weldbend Corporation and Boltex Mfg. Co. have filed petitions with the U.S. Department of Commerce and U.S. International Trade Commission charging that unfairly priced and subsidized imports of carbon steel flanges from India, Spain and Italy are causing material injury to the domestic industry. The antidumping and countervailing petitions seek the enforcement and compliance of Indian, Spanish and Italian manufacturers with U.S. and international trade laws. Boltex and Weldbend charge that unfairly traded imports of carbon steel flanges from India, Spain, and Italy are causing material injury to...

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Different Perspective on Custody Transfer Measurement

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Custody transfer measurement in the petroleum industry has been described many ways. It’s been called “an accuracy in measurement both the buyers and sellers can agree upon,” or sometimes described as “the best that can be achieved to meet the contract conditions.” There are many other descriptions as well. But in reality it is simply “the search for the truth.” Ever since liquids have been bought and sold, people have searched for better ways to measure volume on the fly with increased accuracy. A big advancement for liquid measurement in the petroleum industry was the...

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What Lies Ahead for Oil Prices

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Oil prices are measured in 42-gallon barrels. The history of this tradition dates back to 1866, soon after Edwin Drake drilled the first oil well in the United States in Titusville, PA in 1859. In 1866, a group of independent oil producers met in Titusville and decided that the 42-gallon barrel was the best way to transport oil. At that time, barges floated barrels of oil down the Allegheny River to Pittsburgh on the way to be refined into kerosene. The adoption of this standard for oil measurement stuck, and today oil is still measured...

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Tracking Pipeline Production and Inventories

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Since the collapse of oil and gas prices after August 2014, North American pipeline companies have been under pressure to cut costs. For example, Cushing marketplace pipeline earlier this year dropped its already discounted rate for shipping light crude, by another 10% to $2.50 a barrel. The Alerian Energy Infrastructure Index, a composite of 50 North American energy infrastructure companies engaged in pipeline transportation, processing and storage of energy commodities, has declined steadily since summer 2015, reflecting pressure on pipeline company margins and, currently pipeline companies are either reducing distributions or threatening to do so....

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SwRI Engineer Earns IHSM Award for Significant Contributions

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Darin L. George, a principal engineer in Southwest Research Institute’s (SwRI) Mechanical Engineering Division, is the recipient of the 2016 Laurance S. Reid Award given by the International School of Hydrocarbon Measurement (ISHM). He was honored at a ceremony held May 10 in Oklahoma City. The annual acknowledgement recognizes an outstanding individual for making significant contributions to hydrocarbon measurement or control. The award is given in memory of Laurance S. Reid, a petroleum industry consultant and longtime professor of chemical and petroleum engineering at the University of Oklahoma. Reid, who died in 1986, served as...

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Natural Gas Vehicles: Accurately Measuring Tank Fills

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

With the discovery and development of vast domestic gas shales in the United States over the past decade, this expanding energy resource has led to broader appeal of natural-gas-fueled vehicles (NGVs). Vehicle manufacturers are increasing the number of their NGV offerings, and the natural gas refueling infrastructure in the nation continues to expand. This article focuses on measurement challenges associated with refueling NGVs with compressed natural gas (CNG). Fueling Infrastructure As of February, the industry group Natural Gas Vehicles for America reported there was about 153,000 NGVs on U.S. roads, representing less than 1% of...

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Smart Gas Meter Market Worth USD 2.27 Billion by 2021

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Research and Markets has announced the release of the “Smart Gas Meter Market – Global Trends & Forecast to 2021” report. The smart gas meter market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 7.24% from 2016 to 2021 to reach USD 2.27 Billion by 2021. Government policies and mandates in developed economies and accurate billing and improved customer service are the major factors driving the market. The report segments the smart gas meter market on the basis of end-user into residential, commercial, and industrial. Residential customers are the largest end-users of smart gas meters,...

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Automating Hydraulic Simulations of Large Number of Scenarios

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

As PG&E and other utilities perform unparalleled levels of safety-related work on gas transmission systems, frequent and complex pipeline system outages occur throughout the year. This safety work also carries the potential of pressure reductions due to previously undetected system anomalies in the pipeline systems. Each of these system outages, or pressure reductions, requires the gas system be hydraulically analyzed under a multitude of scenarios to ensure safe system operation and reliable customer service. The number of scenarios requiring analysis quickly grows as system hydraulics are assessed for factors such as varying temperatures (demands), operating...

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PG&E Testing Safety Drones to Inspect Gas and Electric Infrastructure

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is testing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), commonly referred to as drones, to enhance the safety and reliability of its electric and gas service. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has authorized PG&E to use drones to assist with inspections of electric and gas infrastructure. PG&E is conducting two separate testing programs to explore the feasibility of using safety drones to monitor electric infrastructure in hard-to-reach areas and to detect methane leaks across its 70,000-square-mile service area. These aircraft are small and controlled by human operators through remote commands. Drones are...

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SEMS: A Solution to Eliminate or Reduce Accidents, Improve Safety

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

A worker makes a mistake on an offshore platform that causes equipment damage or maybe even an oil spill. More often than not, the employee will be retrained or fired, but will that solve the circumstances that led to the incident in the first place? In my view, the mistake was the result of a management system failure and until the root cause is addressed, the same mistake could happen again. The oil and gas industry and regulators recognize the importance of the management system in creating a culture where employees are properly trained and the...

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EIA Projects 48% Increase in World Energy Consumption by 2040

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s EIA International Energy Outlook 2016 (IEO2016) projects world energy consumption will grow by 48% between 2012 and 2040. Most of this growth will come from countries that are not in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), including countries where demand is driven by strong economic growth, particularly in Asia. Non-OECD Asia, including China and India, accounts for over half the world’s increase in energy consumption over the projection period. Concerns about energy security, effects of fossil fuel emissions on the environment and sustained, long-term high world oil prices...

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Meter Data Management May Evolve to Offer Multivariate Systems

July 2016, Vol. 243, No. 7

A recent Leaderboard Report from Navigant Research examines the strategy and execution of 11 leading meter data management systems (MDMSs) vendors, providing industry participants with an objective assessment of these companies’ relative strengths and weaknesses in the global MDMS market. With billions of data points logged each day from more than 500 million installed smart meters, the demand for enhanced MDMSs is growing. Competitive vendors in this market are now investing in major upgrades, offering data analytics and enhanced support for utility operations as well as advanced capabilities. According to a new Leaderboard Report from...

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