What is it about?

This paper presents an updated review of the external corrosion and failure mechanisms of buried natural gas and oil pipelines. Various forms of external corrosion and failure mechanisms such as hydrogen-induced cracking (HIC), hydrogen embrittlement (HE), corrosion fatigue (CF), stress corrosion cracking (SCC), and microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC) for oil and gas pipelines are thoroughly reviewed. The factors influencing external corrosion and possible forms of environment-assisted cracking (EAC) of pipeline steels in the soil are also reviewed and analyzed in depth.

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Why is it important?

The corrosion on the exterior surface of oil and gas pipelines that can induce significant damages over their lifetime is often given less consideration as compared to the internal corrosion for which most protection is provided in practice. The damages caused by the external corrosion together with the internal material flaws can provoke sudden catastrophic failure of pipelines. Hence, controlling corrosion of the exterior surface of the oil and gas pipelines for their integrity assurance is deemed necessary.


The existing monitoring tools for the external corrosion assessment and the models for corrosion prevention and prediction, failure occurrence, and remaining life of oil and gas pipelines, are analyzed. Moreover, the articles on external corrosion management, reliability-based models, risk-based models, and integrity assessment including machine learning and fuzzy logic approaches, are also reviewed. The conclusions and recommendations for future research in the prevention and prediction of external corrosion are presented at the end.

Professor Milos B. Djukic
University of Belgrade, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: External corrosion of oil and gas pipelines: A review of failure mechanisms and predictive preventions, Journal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering, April 2022, Elsevier, DOI: 10.1016/j.jngse.2022.104467.
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