TransCanada and Enbridge have pledged funding to evaluate
cutting-edge technologies to enhance external leak
detection at the Edmonton research facility in Canada,
using a new pipeline simulator developed by Enbridge and
known as the External Leak Detection Experimental Research
(ELDER) test apparatus.
The partnership also illustrates the dedication and
cooperation by both companies to significantly invest in
innovation and technology
with a common goal.
Further enhancing safety and operational excellence will
provide benefits the entire pipeline industry and directly
address the publics concerns over responsible
TransCanada and Enbridge will share equally in the new
knowledge and advancements that can be applied directly to
improve leak detection in their respective operations.
Enbridge has said repeatedly as a company that we
dont compete in the area of safety, and this
partnership with TransCanada represents clear proof of that
approach. Enbridge has invested considerable time and
resources into building a world-class leak detection
testing apparatus, but we believe that working together
with committed partners to discover the best technology
on the market is in
everyones best interest, says Kirk Byrtus,
Enbridges vice president of Pipeline Control.
Pipelines have an excellent record of safety and
efficiency delivering oil and gas, and TransCanada
continues to strive for zero leaks or safety incidents on
our pipelines, says Vern Meier, TransCanadas
vice president of Pipeline Safety and Compliance.
Joining forces with Enbridge and other partners to
test new methods for detecting leaks is an important step
toward realizing this goal. New technologies must be proven
to work before they are implemented on large-scale
The ELDER apparatus is the first tool of its kind in scale
and was purpose-built by Enbridges Pipeline Control
Systems and Leak Detection (PCSLD) team, along with project
research partner C-FER
Technologies of Edmonton, Canada, to evaluate external leak
detection technologies in a setting that very closely
represents the actual conditions where liquids pipelines
This JIP represents a total funding commitment of
$4-million, including $1.3-million from TransCanada,
$1.6-million from Enbridge, and $1.1-million from the
Alberta Ministry of Innovation and Advanced Education.
Enbridge had previously invested $3-million over two years
to develop and build the ELDER apparatus with C-FER
Engineers from Enbridge, TransCanada, and C-FER
Technologies will be performing a series of tests in 2014
on four external leak-detection technologies including
vapor-sensing tubes, fiber-optic distributed temperature
sensing (DTS) systems, hydrocarbon-sensing cables and
fiber-optic distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) systems.
From the selected technologies, an optimal technology
for external leak
detection on liquids pipelines will be further developed.
At present, the JIP involves only TransCanada and Enbridge,
but it remains an open-ended arrangement. Other pipeline
operators and energy industry leaders are invited to
participate as committed partners.