Pipeline clamp demand surges amid energy security concerns

Siobhan Doyle

Increased concerns about energy security and the desire to support net zero targets through innovative decommissioning projects are driving up demand for subsea clamps and connectors, according to pipeline technology specialist Stats Group.

In an era of heightened global energy demand and geopolitical uncertainties, safeguarding the integrity of pipeline networks stands as an imperative task. Recognising this challenge, Stats Group, a provider of pressurised pipeline isolation and maintenance services, has responded proactively to client concerns by introducing the SureConnect standardised range of mechanical connectors and clamps.

Andy Norrie, representing Stats Group, emphasised the critical role of SureConnect in addressing industry needs, stating, “We all recognise that energy security is currently a pressing concern for national governments and global operators, and that it is prudent to plan for emergency situations which are beyond their control.”

The SureConnect range, designed for planned maintenance and swift response to emergencies, offers operators and contractors a versatile solution to ensure minimal interruption to energy supplies. 

Recent successful applications of SureConnect mechanical connectors include a pipeline flange repair in the UK North Sea, an 18-inch hot tap clamp for a pipeline tie-in in the Bass Strait offshore Australia, and a hot tap clamp for tying in a new gas lift line to an existing pipeline in the Norwegian Continental Shelf.

Norrie highlighted the industry's current stocking challenges, noting, “Typically, the industry does not hold significant stock of large diameter/high pressure connectors or repair clamps - and with lead times sitting at around 16 weeks-plus – it makes sense to put in place contingencies should an asset be compromised, and production is threatened.”

SureConnect offers a standardised product range with flexibility to adapt subsea connectors to meet specific client requirements, considering factors such as design codes, pressures, materials, and flange specifications.

Norrie stressed the significance of quick and effective repairs in the pipeline network, stating, “Any interruption to the flow of oil and gas through the international pipeline network can have a significant impact on the energy supplies for millions of people and can result in the suspension of industrial activities.”

Beyond emergency repair functions, SureConnect products find application in various subsea pipeline scenarios, including tying in new lines to existing infrastructure and capping redundant pipelines during decommissioning. 

According to Norrie, this aligns with the industry's commitment to supporting net-zero goals and the increasing interest in innovative decommissioning projects worldwide, as well as the repurposing of existing infrastructure for hydrogen and Carbon Capture Usage and Storage readiness. 


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