Pipes are an integral application for many major industries like petrochemicals, ports, chemicals, oil & gas, and more. It is important that these applications are maintained appropriately to avoid leakages. In this article, we will talk about why pipeline integrity is important and how cold pipe cutting is better than laser cutting.
As many might know, laser or hot pipe cutting is cutting the pipe using heat, while cold cutting means an open/ split frame pipe cutting machine is used to cut the pipe without heat. The development of cold cutting technology emerged after a series of incidents. One of the primary contributors of these incidents was the presence of hydrocarbons which is a basic building block of energy products in almost every pipeline. The presence of these components creates a potential hazard for pipeline maintenance. Hence, cold cutting was developed to eliminate such hazards and inherent safety advantages.
Why implement cold pipe cutting?
- Safety: As mentioned, the primary reason for developing cold pipe cutting technology is the safety advantages it offers. Safety is also the primary consideration before any pipeline project or operation is planned. This not only includes the safety of the operator but also the tool and application.
- Time: Reducing job time is another key aspect to ensure the productivity and efficiency of the site. Also, since many essential services like water, oil, gas, and others are transported through pipes, completing maintenance operations faster reduces inconvenience for the community.
Benefits of cold pipe cutting
- Prevents HAZ (Heat Affected Zone)
HAZ is created when extreme temperature produced by acetylene or plasma torches is applied on a pipe. The process changes the molecular structure of the metal leading to altering the properties to detrimental effect. Since, cold cutting gives a perfect weld prep, it makes the beveling job easier and achieve pipeline integrity faster.
- Eliminates the grinding process
As mentioned earlier, hot cutting creates an undesirable HAZ which needs to be welded as the next step. This step of hand grinding is time-consuming, hard, and laborious. Since it is not required in cold cutting, it saves both time and labor.
- Faster with less manpower
As many pipes carry hazardous gases or liquids that could damage the environment, it is important to eliminate the chances of spillage. Cold cutting is proven to be the fastest and accurate method involving less manpower ensuring leak-free pipes. Without a doubt, it gives the best ROI to any industrialist.
As many explosion prone industries like petrochemicals, chemical, oil & gas industries are forbidden to use maintenance tools that could generate spark, cold cutting tools are the safest option. Cold cutting is not only a spark-free alternative of cutting pipes but also eliminates the emission of airborne contaminants that are discharged on torching the pipe.
Cold pipe cutting abilities
- Cuts and bevels simultaneously
Cold cutting tools like H&S Split Frames can cut and bevel pipes simultaneously which allows the process to be faster and accurate than the milling process.
- Speed and quality of the cut
H&S Split Frames are designed to be portable i.e. simple to set up and to cut and bevel accurately. As any tool can do destructive cutting, H&S tools only believe in delivering the best ROI to customers by delivering critical cuts for pipeline integrity.
- Versatile onsite
The machining accessories for H&S pipe cutters allows the tool to tackle any onsite hurdles. Accessories including tool holders and heads that allow to not only cut and beveling standard ID and OD mount, but also offer J-bevel, stub, and fin removal.
We hope this article has established the benefits and capabilities of cold pipe cutting over laser cutting. Visit us next time for more knowledge sharing articles.