Remote Nondestructive Testing of Unpiggable Pipelines

since 1999
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Magnetic Tomography Method (MTM)
Safety programs for underground and underwater pipelines


Oil, gas or municipal pipeline transportation potentially threatens our safety. How to provide pipeline safety if inline inspection can’t be applied?

Only timely inspection and repair of metal defects of pipeline will prevent possible accidents. One can recall an accident in Mexican Gulf when BP company had to spend billions of dollars for various compensations and sell lots of its assets.

Ecological and energetically safety of any country depends largely on reliability of its pipelines. And pipeline inspection is a complicated enough engineering problem , especially for those unpigable pipes where inspection can not be provided with inline defectoscopes. In this connection, pipeline testing doesn't not only hold the key position in pipeline service but also defines the technological potential of the country.

Magnetic methods of technical diagnostics, which allow to registration of local loads stress contactlessly, have been developed intensively in Russia. Scientific and technical center "Transkor-K" specializes in production and exploiting device kit implementing innovative magnetic tomography method (MTM). More than 17000 km of buried (and recently offshore) service pipelines have been inspected by specialists of the center in Great Britain, the USA, Argentina, Mexico, Bolivia, Venezuela, Columbia, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, China, Australia, Uzbekistan, Belorussia, Syria, Croatia and other contries.

Last 10 years brought success to this principally new direction of magnetic inspection. Registration of values of mechanical stresses in real operation conditions allows to apply internationally accepted assessment criteria for pipelines defects' risk factor which can't be monitored with inline inspection. Survey is carried out without interruption and pipeline excavation. It requires minimum of client's human and technical resources.

Means of magnetic measurement and regulating technical standards(RD 102-008-2002) have been developed and registered in Government Registry of Russia. Magnetic Tomography Method is one of the methods leading in effectiveness and used around the world. MTM has beeb patented in Russia (2002) and in the USA (2012), it is expected to be patented in Europe, Canada and other countries. The technology is awarded eight golden medals at international exhibitions.

Theoretical basis of MTM and its fundamentals were reported at conferences of ASME, ASCE, API, NACE in the USA.

There was a foreign market demand, and as early as 2006 STC "Transkor-K" in cooperation with Malaysian national company "PETRONAS" has started scientific and technical development to adapt MTM technology for safety of underwater gas pipelines. AQUA-MTM technology is unique and it has no world analogs for remote inspection of underwater pipelines. Within following four years hardware/software system "AQUA-SKIF" has been developed. As a result our company has become an exclusive "PETRONAS" AQUA MTM contractor and has already finished the first 200 km offshore pipeline inspection for this company. High correlation results of magnetic tomography method with world standards safety data has been confirmed. It let us suggest to make an addition for normative documentation for pipeline transport to American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

The AQUA MTM technology received the contest title "Winner" and "Attention Focus" at the Arctic Technology Conference - 2012 (Houston, USA) based on these criteria: new, innovative, proven, broad interest and significant impact.


STC "Transkor-K" was founded as a limited liability company in 2001. It offers the pipeline inspection technology- magnetic tomography method (MTM). Devices created by specialists allow to determine real technical state of objects with any insulating cover at depths of 30 meters for underground main pipes and up to 200 meters underwater pipes. As a result of verification of 1500 check pits MTM has been confirmed to be highly effective (more then 80%) in detecting of defect areas. This allows to run the safety operational program by planning corrective maintenance to prevent pipeline crashes. MTM advantages:

- doesn't require any preparation of the pipeline for testing

- doesn't require any changes in pipeline operation

- allows to monitor defects

- registers local stresses in real service condition.

STC "TRANSKOR" and its subsidiaries are certified by expert organizations of Russian Engineering Supervision, Russian Society of Nondistructive Testing and Technical Diagnostics and Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. It also has got international certificates of compliance of quality management on standard MC ISO 9001:2008 and European system ACHILLES JQS. Development is protected with patents in Russia, USA, Europe, are marked with golden medals of International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva, European Exhibition in Strasbourg (2011), Defectoslopia-2002 (Barcelona), Eureka (2006, 2007 Belgium), Exhibition "Archimedes" (2006, 2007 Moscow) nomination " Best Domestically Produced Development in Pipeline Inspection Field", prize-winner in field of innovation of science intensive technology of national award "Silver Archer"(Washington DC, 2011) and lots of other domestic and foreign awards.


Russian technology development of Magnetic Tomography Method allows to obtain information about mechanical stress measurements and risk level of any metal defects remotely.

- no risk for object (contact-free method);

- doesn't require preparation of pipeline

- reliability program and risk estimation of pipeline exploiting according to modern standards.


MTM can be applied for underground and underwater pipelines made of ferromagnetic material or other with any insulating cover including unpigable pipelines.


- Contact-free detecting of pipeline stress concentrated areas (higher local loads, metal and weld defects) caused by technological defects, mechanical damages and internal or external corrosion centers and stress corrosion cracking; detecting of distraction risk caused by sags, landslides.

- Determining of remaining resources and safe operating pressure considering real loads, soil corrosiveness, transported product, structural and strengthening changes of original and welded metal.

- Elaborating of proposals regarding reconstruction and pipeline exploiting modes.

Providing technological and economic review of pipeline state for risk insurance.

- Information supporting for managing optimal decision making regarding pipeline maintaining. Safety programs. Risk estimation. Drawing up a document with axis and all defect areas linked to topographic map with absolute geographic coordinates.


Making industry safety survey of pipelines, copper equipment, production lines, technical devices and vessels made of ferromagnetic material

- at oil and gas industry objects;

- at gas supply systems which use natural and Liquefied petroleum gas

- at main pipeline networks

- at pumping stations, gas-distribution stations, compressor stations

- at tankages.

Technical diagnostics and Nondistructive testing of main pipes, oil field gathering lines, industrial pipelines, gas -and hot-water pipeline systems, product pipelines, steel and cast-iron pipes and pipe's parts; gas equipment of coppers, production lines and assemblies, storage and instantaneous water heaters, industrial kilns; technical devices for oil producing industry; ferromagnetic vessels.