Jun 2013
Gas Distribution
Visual & Acoustic Leakage Detection
Jun 2013
Sep 2013
Northern Gas Networks
Graeme Cleeton, Dean Woolley, Ian Whitehead, & Alec Breen
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Network Innovation Allowance
Gas Distribution Networks

Detecting leakage were no immediate obvious solution is available, typically city centre locations, congested highways or locations with particular specific engineering difficulty, repairs can be expensive to undertake requiring significant resources, disruption to customers and can take a long time to resolve. Leakage detection is currently undertaken by using a Wheatstone Bridge based detector to pinpoint the closest location of the escaping gas from the surface. While in the majority of cases this technique can quickly provide good guidance to engineering teams on the exact excavation location point to undertake the repair.

In situations of engineering difficulty these indications can be some distance from the mains escape point, leading to “dry” holes, extended excavations or trial holes to assist in locating the actual leakage point.

To objective of the assessment to reduce the number of long duration escape jobs on the West Yorkshire escape log from 70 to 40 over a 12 week period.

To establish a full cost benefit analysis on the use of this technique. To establish the safety procedures required for deploying this technique and what controls are required to ensure increased safety is maintained To assess the skills and training required to deploy this equipment, with recommendations for full deployment

  • Reduction in reinstatement requirement
  • Measure the impact on NRSWA
  • Measure the impact on Customer – especially around traffic disruption.

Produce a detailed summary report for each job detailing findings, results and outcomes.

All Gas Networks experience engineering difficult long duration gas escape jobs, particularly in highly urbanized locations. Should this project prove successful it could be deployed across all UK Gas Distribution Networks.

The project will result in a detailed report on the 100 jobs undertaken including recommended procedural & Operational Changes. NGN & BBUSL will also develop a communication strategy to ensure this project is shared in industry publications and shared at technical conferences.

The recording of sound emitted from different leakage types will provide a database on acoustic profiles that will be shared within the industry.