understanding a pipeline pig detector

pipeline pig detector

when doing a progressive cleaning pig or intelligent pig in a pipeline, workers install a transmitter on the back of the pig. This transmitter functions to transmit signals with distances of up to about 6 meters, but technically it can be up to 23 meters. Here are some types of transmitters that are often used: ITX 251, ITX 503, ITX 504, ITX 804 and ITX 806. ITX transmitters are available for all pipe sizes from 3 “to 56”. For smaller sizes up to 12 “, complete transmitter tools are available. For larger sizes, a bolt-on flange is used for easy mounting of the ITX to any cleaning or inspection tool. Transmitters can operate for quite a long time, which is up to 1000 hours.

  • High signal range (distance up to 23m / 75ft)
  • stainless steel housing so that it can be used on almost all types of fluids
  • can be used on pipes with an operating pressure of 200 bar even on special requests, can be up to 300 bar pressure.
  • can last up to 1000 hours. In some conditions, we can request special conditions so that the transmitter can withstand over 1000 hours.
  • Maximum operating temperature 85 ° C / 185 ° F
  • External on / off switch
  • Easy battery replacement
  • Available for 3 “or larger in-line inspection and cleaning tools
  • Pressure switch activation available on request.
pipeline pig detector
transmitter installed at the back end of a Cup pig
EEPD - electronic pig detector
EPD – electronic pig detector

workers monitor pig travel at a distance of 500 meters each using an instrument called EPD – Electronic Pig Detector. Usually, there are 2 teams that take turns. for example team 1 uses EPD 1 waiting for Pig at a distance of 500 m then team 2 carrying EPD 2 waits for pig or standby at a distance of 1,000 meters. after the pig passed the 500m distance, team 1 moved to the location of 1,500 m and waited for the pig to arrive. Pig monitoring is carried out continuously until the Pig arrives at the pig receiver that can be identified by the red pig signal.

pipeline pig detector
pipeline pig detection schema


Pig tracking work is very important and requires a high level of concentration. if the worker is not observant, then the pig will just pass without being monitored by the tracking team. This incident is very dangerous because the pig can enter the pig receiver but the officer is still waiting for the pig along the pipeline. sometimes the pig runs very slowly, for example, every 500 meters takes 2 hours. but there are also pigs running very fast for example within 10 minutes, the pig has walked as far as 500 meters. This condition is determined by many factors including flowrate, operating pressure, the type of pig being discharged and the type of fluid in the pipe. The tracking officer or team must be able to calculate properly so they can estimate the pig’s velocity and the position of the pig along the pipeline.

pipeline pig detector
pig signal installed on a pig receiver


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