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4 New Ways to Beat Corrosion

Corrosion can place a big financial hole in profits and wreak havoc on the environment. However 2015 brings some promising new technologies to the forefront. From earth robots to NASA space technology, 2015 could change the way we detect oil and gas pipeline corrosion.
Here are 4 new ways to beat corrosion:
1. Mobile Corrosion Labs and Cathodic Protection
The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) has created mobile laboratories to fix pipeline corrosion at its source using a technique called “cathodic protection”. The technology works by making the pipeline the cathode of an electrochemical cell causing a sacrificial anode to corrode instead of the pipeline. The corrosion experts put a coat of titanium coated with a layer of mixed rare-earth oxides over the anode to delay its wear.
2. PG&E 3D Toolbox
PG&E have revolutionized corrosion detection with the production of the 3D toolbox. The 3D toolbox, which is as simple to use as a digital camera, captures images to identify and measure dents, cracks or corrosion on the outer surface of pipelines.
According to PG&E, “the data is automatically fed into calculation tools to generate an assessment within minutes, a process that normally would take hours or even days to complete.” The beauty of this tool is that it only takes a few seconds to capture images and multiple views of the pipe can be produced in minutes allowing PG&E engineers to get into action quickly if corrosion is detected.

3. PG&E Mars Rover Technology
PG&E is working with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to test a laser-based technology to locate natural gas leaks from pipelines. The technology, which was previously designed to find methane on Mars, is a handheld device featuring laser-guided sensors that are hypersensitive to methane. The device is expected to be released for commercial use this year.

4. Miniature Robots
PG&E is testing a miniature robot with mini magnetic wheels to patrol the outside of pipelines in search for corrosion. According to PG&E, the “tethered robot, equipped with high-definition cameras, is designed to travel down through tight, rounded vents to the space between the pipe and casing to record the condition of each covered segment.
Small enough to fit inside a person’s hand, the robot has been tested in various locations in California and if successful and once commercialized, could save companies time and money in corrosion detection.


TNphoto Tatsuya Nakagawa
Tatsuya Nakagawa is the VP of Marketing and co-founder of Castagra Products, a storage tank and wastewater coatings manufacturing company that is highly acclaimed for its sustainable coatings, cold weather tank and secondary containment coating applications, and its durable frac tank coatings. Castagra is used by the world’s top oil and gas field services companies.