In response to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Recommendation P-09-1, the Department of Transportation (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) initiated a comprehensive study to identify actions that could be implemented by pipeline operators to significantly reduce longitudinal seam failures in electric resistance weld (ERW) pipe. The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of Phase II of the project with focus on the study objectives and results.

Phase II of the project consisted of five tasks with the following objectives relevant to the ERW and flash weld (FW) process: 1) develop and optimize viable hydrotest protocols for ERW/FW seam defects 2) improve the sensors, interpretive algorithms, and tool platforms in regard to In-Line-Inspection (ILI) and In-the-Ditch-Methods (ITDM) to better ensure structural integrity by developing and optimizing concepts to address problems in detecting and sizing, 3) bridge gaps in defect characterization in regard to types, sizes, geometries, and idealizations, to increase pipeline safety through improvements needed to implement both ILI and hydrotesting, 4) validate existing failure prediction models and, where gaps preclude validation, refine or develop these models needed to assess and quantify defect severity for cold welds, hook cracks, and selective seam weld corrosion (SSWC) (the primary ERW/FW seam threats) for failure subject to loadings that develop both during hydrotests and in service, and 5) develop software to support integrity management of seam welds with enough flexibility to benefit from the experience gained during this project.

The reports generated during the course of the project are publically available and are located on following PHMSA website:

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