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An Investigation of External Corrosion At Ambient Temperature On Thermally Insulated Pipes Under Ageing Conditions

Corrosion under insulation (CUI) is among the key damage mechanisms in the hydrocarbon industry which mainly manifests localized corrosion on thermally insulated equipment, tanks, piping, and pipelines. CUI is a highly frequent degradation in the oil refining facilities where reportedly 40-60% of failures in the piping result from CUI. In addition, small bore piping (i.e., nominal pipe size, NPS < 4 inch. or 100 mm) are even more prone to CUI and reportedly up to 81% of failures in these piping caused by CUI.

Product Number: 51323-19350-SG
Author: Ahmad Raza Khan Rana, George Jarjoura, Graham Brigham, Syed Umair Niaz Bukhari
Publication Date: 2023
$20.00
$20.00
$20.00

Corrosion under insulation (CUI) refers to the external corrosion on the metallic pipe/ equipment
body subjected to thermal insulations. CUI manifests localized corrosion (mainly) and has
always been a driver behind failures on thermally insulated pipelines. Despite the advent of
numerous measures namely protective coatings, and hydrophobic insulations, the issue of CUI
remains an inevitable reality for the pipelines especially those which undergo submerging
conditions from the rainwater in the culverts, being buried under the snow piles, water flooding,
etc. All these moisture intrusion events result in the soaking of insulation thereby exploiting the
CUI risks. This study addresses the ambient temperature CUI behavior of a thermally insulated
carbon steel pipe to mimic the out-of-service (normally happens during maintenance shutdowns,
mothballing, etc.) behavior of thermally carbon steel pipeline(s). The insulated pipe assembly
was submerged under the water for a two day’s period followed by exposure to outdoor
conditions for one year. The insulated assembly was checked for corrosion behaviors using
confocal laser microscopy, and x-ray diffraction; followed by the interpretation of corrosion
modes and kinetics.

Corrosion under insulation (CUI) refers to the external corrosion on the metallic pipe/ equipment
body subjected to thermal insulations. CUI manifests localized corrosion (mainly) and has
always been a driver behind failures on thermally insulated pipelines. Despite the advent of
numerous measures namely protective coatings, and hydrophobic insulations, the issue of CUI
remains an inevitable reality for the pipelines especially those which undergo submerging
conditions from the rainwater in the culverts, being buried under the snow piles, water flooding,
etc. All these moisture intrusion events result in the soaking of insulation thereby exploiting the
CUI risks. This study addresses the ambient temperature CUI behavior of a thermally insulated
carbon steel pipe to mimic the out-of-service (normally happens during maintenance shutdowns,
mothballing, etc.) behavior of thermally carbon steel pipeline(s). The insulated pipe assembly
was submerged under the water for a two day’s period followed by exposure to outdoor
conditions for one year. The insulated assembly was checked for corrosion behaviors using
confocal laser microscopy, and x-ray diffraction; followed by the interpretation of corrosion
modes and kinetics.

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Product Number: 51300-00771-SG
ISBN: 00771 2000 CP
Author: Yvanna M. Ireland, P.Eng., Aida Lopez, MSc, P.Eng.
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