Photo: Tracerco

Tracerco backs riser life extension project in Gulf of Mexico

Tracerco has secured a contract with an operator in the Gulf of Mexico to provide subsea inspection for a life extension project of more than 18 risers.

Under the contract, Tracerco will deploy the subsea computed tomography (CT) scanner Discovery, said to operate along the same general principles as CT scanners used in hospitals.

Discovery will be used to inspect the risers and determine whether they can be extended past their original design life by gathering real-time data on a variety of integrity issues including pipeline corrosion, pitting and wall thinning.

This is expected to allow the operator to work with the local authorities to get their permit extended.

“Tracerco was the first company to develop a subsea CT system and still holds the fundamental patent for the concept of subsea CT scanning dating back to 2011. Over the years since, Discovery has incorporated numerous additional patented innovations for optimizing the system,” said Jim Bramlett, commercial manager North America for Tracerco.

“Discovery provides the integrity insights to know the unknown enabling critical decisions regarding life extension to be made and it does this while the risers are still in full operation. No need to interfere with production.”

According to Tracerco, technologies using CT such as Discovery provide operators with valuable inspection data on the entire pipeline, spanning the range from product to coating and all areas in between. 

It is a non-intrusive external scanning technique and is easily capable of scanning through several inches of pipeline steel with no requirement to remove any protective coating, regardless of thickness and material, the company concluded.

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