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Pisces corrosion and waterproof components for the oil and gas industries

08 March 2021

Intelliconnect (Europe) Ltd has provided a new design of rugged corrosion and waterproof connectors to a UK start-up company, who manufactures a unique system for remote monitoring of the wall thickness of pipelines used in the petrochemical, oil and gas industries.

The end system uses discrete RF modules that are directly connected to specific points on an installation, to provide remotely managed continuous measurement and monitoring of pipeline wall thickness. Traditionally, this activity is carried out manually, with inspection staff regularly having to access the relevant areas over a complete installation or site. This can be a very costly, time-consuming and potentially error-prone procedure.

Brief 

The measuring equipment is designed to be installed indoors or outdoors in a wide range of environments – in oil refineries or on pipelines, from desert to near arctic conditions. The system needed to be waterproof and capable of withstanding ingress of liquids sand and dust. A range of waterproof TNC/MCX bulkhead mount adaptors, waterproof TNC plug connectors and waterproof quadraxial (4-way for signal and data lines) connectors were required – all of which would have to be ATEX approved by the customer. There were also a number of internal cable assemblies requiring ATEX approval, which called for a careful selection of heat shrink sleeves.

Challenges

The project faced the following challenges: 

• An outdoor environment with an operating temperature of up to 200°C, for an ultrasonic thermocouple temperature unit

• It needed to be waterproof to IP68, impervious to liquid, sand and dust and capable of meeting ATEX approval (material selection, cable assemblies)

• A custom connector quadraxial (4-way) design needed to be aesthetically similar to the TNC adaptor design, with the ability to ensure that the correct device was fitted to the correct TNC bulkhead adaptor.

Read the full article in the March issue of DPA.




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