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Composite repair minimises processing downtime

Published:  14 October, 2020

The timely application of the LOCTITE Composite Repair System to a damaged petrol vessel allowed a petrochemical facility to continue processing for several months until a new vessel could be installed. The company responsible for this solution is a leading pipeline repair specialist, Hydratight.

During the planned shutdown and routine plant inspection at the processing site, a potential problem with the petrol vessel was identified, specifically reduced wall thickness and stress corrosion cracking. Due to the long lead time of up to three months for the procurement of a replacement vessel, Hydratight was asked to repair it to preserve productivity in the intervening period.

To minimise downtime, ensure vessel integrity and safeguard health and safety, Hydratight proposed the LOCTITE Composite Repair System as a short-term solution. Central to this method is a resin-based composite material reinforced with fibres. It is similar in design to materials developed by Henkel that are successfully serving manufacturers of rotor blades for wind power generation or lightweight components for the automotive industry.

The large size of the petrol vessel - 3500mm diameter, 15500mm length with a surface area of 200m2 - and several protruding pipes made this a significant project for both Hydratight and its partner, Henkel. Upon contract award, the timeline available for preparatory engineering, material procurement and manpower mobilisation was accelerated, allowing Hydratight to complete the vessel repair within two weeks.

The ISO/TS 24817 and DNV GL certified LOCTITE System comprises four products and is suitable for the repair of both non-through wall and through wall defects, covering all repair classes 1-3.  In addition to straight pipes, the system can be used to repair other components such as bends, tees, reducers and flanges.

The system allows corroded pipes to be repaired in situ, without any interruption to operations and even with high internal pressure.  Also, the quality achieved by the repair can increase the lifetime of steel pipelines by up to 20 years.


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