Water, Sewage & Effluent January-February 2017 - Page 35

production . The drivers in the food industry remain strong .
The oil sector is the third key industry where the technology appears to have a strong pull . As with the water sector , the low risk of using ice to clear pipes is an attractive proposition for an industry that operates with an inherently hazardous and valuable liquid product .
Following testing for one of the world ’ s largest oil companies , projects are now being studied that will inevitably stretch the technical limits of the technology . This includes projects involving delivery of ice pigging on oil platforms , the decommissioning of sub-sea oil pipelines , and cleaning pipes in some of the remotest parts of the world .
The experience with ice pigging is that many industries usually describe themselves as conservative , risk-averse , and slow to change — and probably with good reason . At the same time , the same industries often show great interest in innovation as a means of saving money , time and effort . The challenge is to recognise the paradox that this presents , remain patient with early adopters , and have the legs to stay in the game long enough until the innovation becomes the norm . u
Going global : ice pigging is now being used in 11 countries , including Australia , Spain and the UK .
About the author
Matthew Stephenson is ice pigging unit director for Suez .
“ The challenge is to recognise the paradox that this [ ice pigging ] presents .”
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