April 2011 Vol. 238 No. 4


Operators Take Control From Well To Terminal With Integrity/Risk Software Product

In the oil and gas industry, companies that rely on deficient control and management systems are not only risking loss of production and the asset but also putting lives and the environment in danger. A failure to manage these risks can ultimately lead to a sequence of events that may have consequences on a global scale.

Risk can be high, but all seems to be in perfect control to senior management. In that situation, it is “business as usual.” The ultimate outcome depends on how the flaws are revealed, communicated and acted on – by improvement of the systems, or by accident.

Without a clear overview of the integrity of pipelines and components and the risk of failure, management cannot ensure appropriate action is taken to ensure safe operation and follow-up status as work progresses.

Manage, Track And Act
DNV Software’s SilverPipe software manages integrity and risk of the entire infrastructure of onshore pipelines and facilities, and is equally fit for long haul lines, in-field installations and distribution networks. SilverPipe is used for safe and cost-efficient operation of complete oil infrastructures from well to downstream terminals and gas transportation networks.

The software’s built-in capabilities for managing company integrity strategies and detailed integrity plans give integrity managers a powerful tool to stay on top of the situation and to ensure that inspections and assessments are executed as planned.

DNV says its customers report increased efficiency as the software delivers one system that covers an overview of the whole integrity cycle, supporting all activities that manage integrity and risk. A total configurable package supports company best practices and gives managers a situation map and risk log that includes company-specific work processes. GIS and inspection database integrations ensure seamless access to existing pipeline information.

Risk Dashboard
The system’s risk dashboard provides what DNV describes as an unrivaled overview of the user’s asset during its life cycle, including documenting risk and the decision-making process, control of integrity plans, and systems that allow managers to ensure that projects deliver as planned. It offers full traceability of integrity management events and decisions, streamlining controlling and improvement activities from well to terminal.
The robust and documented interfaces between life-cycle data management and integrity assessment tools ensure consistency and quality of calculations and make integrity decisions documented and auditable.

The assessment tools are based on 50 years of experience in delivering software to the industry and cover calculations for strength assessment, code compliance and QRA as well as calculators for risk based inspection planning (RBI) for components and tank systems.

The software can be interfaced with DNV’s Phast suite of software for dispersion modelling, hazard analysis and QRA. With more than 1,000 customers globally, Phast is the most validated and functionally comprehensive risk-analysis software available for managing the risks associated with hazardous installations.

SilverPipe has built-in support for ASME, API and DNV codes including pre-configured threats. The overall risk is aggregated, reported and used to optimize long-term integrity plans. Separate assessment of pipelines, components and hotspots by qualitative and semi-quantitative approaches is the basis for risk aggregation.
Phased implementation of comprehensive systems is the route to take. It is often a challenge for companies to get started with comprehensive risk and integrity management systems. It certainly requires careful planning, a phased implementation plan and a trained staff. Through the provision of a modular software approach, powerful data import mechanisms, interfaces to existing company systems such as ERP, GIS and document systems — as well as offering a skilled integrity management staff — DNV helps companies implement best integrity practices and ensure sustainable and reliable integrity processes.

Documenting and tracking risk decisions are essential. SilverPipe uses the risk matrix and best engineering concepts to enforce company policies and uniform conduct of work. Through pre-defined report templates, the periodical reports to authorities and other stakeholders are produced consistently and cost-effectively. It closes the loop between assessment, inspection and mitigation with full traceability of integrity management events and decisions.

Simplicity in graphics, including color-coded real-time status, keeps operators continuously informed. Life-cycle management solutions help operators manage information, identify risks and make qualified decisions using configurable and scalable engineering software, accessing all relevant asset data, current and history.

Reduce unplanned shutdowns with timely response to integrity issues. Keep track of history as well as the current situation. Optimize one’s inspection program with the results of risk-based inspection studies.

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