Inspection of a non-piggable condensate pipeline

Offshore Palawan, Philippines


The Malampaya deep-water gas-to-power project supplies the Philippines with up to 20% of its electricity. A shallow-water production platform processes the gas, before exporting it through a 504-kilometre offshore pipeline to a gas plant, and sends condensate through a 3-kilometre CEP line to a nearby CALM loading buoy. The CEP line had not been inspected since installation in 2001, and was required in 2014 as part of a pipeline integrity management plan. IRM Systems provided IRM services in the same year to the client.


One of the valves in the condensate pipeline was a reduced bore valve. Without a constant ID, IRM Systems had to come up with an alternative method to perform a pipeline inspection. After conducting feasibility studies, technology reviews and cost-benefit analyses, an inspection tool with an umbilical was selected as the most appropriate solution. IRM Systems were then able to prove competency in isolating the section of pipeline where the inspection tool would be inserted through a blind flange.


A feasibility component to assess what is the best option is always a necessity for our type of work, because they are non-standard issues. We have to tailor to each client, and think OK if we do that then what are the benefits? What are the cons? What are the credible alternatives?

We can do that because we are technology independent. So assume there are three companies able to provide the technology behind the selected solution, we help the client with evaluation, sourcing, and ultimately executing the project.