Pipelines are principal devices for natural gas transportation which are amenable to operational challenges such as leakages. Several methods for predicting leakages in natural gas pipeline have been developed. Some of these techniques detect leakages after several hours while some are prone to false alarms or inaccurate predictions. This study developed a pressure transient analysis model for predicting gas pipeline leakages in real time. The method of characteristics was employed to solve the resultant non-linear gas flow equations without neglecting the inertia term as in previous studies. The system behaviour was simulated after discretizing the pipe length and the differences between observed and calculated variables were used to predict single and multiple leakages. Results were validated using field data.
Key words: Pipeline leakages, natural gas, pressure transient, analytical method, method of characteristics.
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