New pipeline to feed China’s petrochemical industry

China National Petroleum Corporation has commenced welding on a crude oil pipeline which starts in Lanzhou, passes through the Gansu, Shaanxi, and Sichuan provinces, and ends in Pengzhou, northwest of Chengdu.

The Lanzhou – Chengdu Pipeline will traverse 878 km of some of China’s most challenging terrain, including the Qinling Mountains. A large number of tunnels will be used during the installation of the pipeline, with the longest tunnel nearing 3 km in length.

The 24 inch diameter pipeline will comprise of X65 spiral submerged-arc-welded (SSAW) pipe, have a design pressure between 8 and 13 MPa, and have the capacity to transport 20,080 bbl/d of crude oil.

China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has said that ensuring the progress and quality of construction and the safe operation of pipeline once in service are the major challenges for the pipeline construction team.

A significant challenge in engineering the pipeline was the complexity of the geological features along the pipeline route.

A number of gas transmission pipelines are being built in parallel with the Lanzhou– Chengdu Pipeline including the 129 km Chengdu – Chongqing Pipeline.

CNPC says that the Lanzhou – Chengdu Pipeline will promote the construction of a petrochemical base in Sichuan as well as stimulate regional economic development.

The project is expected to be put into operation in 2012.

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