It addresses issues of common interest concerning the technical integrity of gas transmission pipelines, in the areas of pipe manufacture, pipeline design, construction, operation and maintenance. Research results and guidelines are made available to the wider pipeline industry and are incorporated in national and international standards.
Today EPRG has a distinct structure aimed at addressing the issues of common interest concerning the technical integrity of gas transmission pipelines in the areas of pipe manufacture, pipeline design, construction, operation and maintenance. The organisation has a plenary group that contains one member from each of EPRG’s member companies. Under this plenary group it has three working/technical committees that work in accordance to specific research/development areas – Materials and Manufacturing, Corrosion and Corrosion Protection and Design and Operation.
The first of these technical committees undertakes projects in areas such as the measurement and specification of strength and deformation of welded pipes and fittings for on and offshore applications, measurement and specification and control of fracture initiation and propagation in pipelines and improving strength, toughness and weldability. In the area of corrosion, technical experts work on topics such as selecting the best steels and materials for resistance to corrosion and developing corrosion-resistant coatings, while the last technical committee, Design and Operation is geared towards such issues as the assessment of weld defects and the establishment of standards and the continued safe use of older pipelines.
The European Pipeline Research Group (EPRG) has recently added two more new members – the Finnish pipeline operator Gasum and the Spanish pipe manufacturer STS Tubular Group - to its list of members. EPRG now has 20 member companies, based in nine European countries; collectively they are responsible for line pipe manufacturing capacity of around four million tonnes/year and around 120,000 km of operational high-pressure gas transmission pipelines in Europe.
Gasum Oy owns and operates the Finnish natural gas transmission system. The system was first constructed in the 1970s, and has been extended in later years. It includes three compressor stations and approximately 1200 km of high pressure gas transmission pipelines across the south of the country. Gas is supplied for electricity generation and district heating, as well as for other industrial, commercial and domestic applications.
STS Tubular Group is based in Alegría-Dulantzi, northern Spain, and specialises in the manufacture of large-diameter spirally-welded steel pipe up to Grade X80. With a current annual capacity of 250,000 tonnes, STS supplies much of the line pipe for the Spanish gas transmission system. STS also has a coating plant, applying external and internal coatings for gas, water and other applications.
The new memberships were announced at the 18th Joint Technical Meeting on Pipeline Research involving EPRG, the Pipeline Research Council International and the Australian Pipeline Industry Association, held in San Francisco in May 2011. Gasum, STS and the other EPRG members have every confidence that the enlargement of the Group will bring many mutual benefits.
EPRG member companies:
- BP, UK
- Corinth Pipeworks, Greece
- Enagas, Spain
- ENI, Italy
- Europipe, Germany
- Fluxys, Belgium
- Gasum, Finland
- Gasunie, Netherlands
- GDF SUEZ, France
- National Grid, UK
- Open Grid Europe, Germany
- Salzgitter Mannesmann Grossrohr, Germany
- Salzgitter Mannesmann Line Pipe, Germany
- Shell, Netherlands
- SNAM Rete Gas, Italy
- STS Tubular Group, Spain
- Tata Steel, UK
- Tenaris Dalmine, Italy
- Total, France
- Vallourec & Mannesmann, France
For further information please visit: www.eprg.net