The transportation of crude oil and gases are an integral part of its manufacture. They must be mined and then somehow moved to the factory for refining. Pipelines were reportedly first made in the late 19th century, but pipeline alignment sheets were not developed until much later.
The lines are usually built with tubes made of steel or plastic. Most are buried underground to depths of up to 48 feet. The pumping stations along the lines are what keep the oil moving. They usually work twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, three hundred and sixty-five days a year. Line operators are there to monitor the entire route. Safety inspections are performed at regular intervals to look for leaks, breaks, and other inconsistencies. These operators and inspectors are trained to be prepared for any emergency. They can easily shut down a line or a section of it if the need arises.
Many other materials can also be transported this way, not just oil. Materials such as water, hydrogen, biofuels, wastewater and even, in some particular cases, beers on a smaller scale can be moved through these lines. Some are designed to transport two different products at the same time. Normally the products are not separated on the line itself. Needless to say, the possibilities are endless!
There are several components that make up each line system. At the beginning you will find the injection station, where the material is pumped. Then there are the compression valves along the entire line that keep the gases moving. Liquids are moved by pumps.
The lines are protected by valve stop stations. Sections of the line can be blocked for maintenance. This is especially important when a leak or rupture needs to be repaired. It is not necessary to shut down and empty the entire line. Engineers can now simply work on that particular area by blocking the flow.
Regulators are used to relieve pressure from gas lines. These are important and are operated through valve stations. Then there is the final leg, which is the departure station. This is where the materials will be distributed on different lines and moved to the final destination.
Several companies are offering their services to generate sheets showing the engineering data in relation to the line itself. These maps show you the complete route of the line and identify the land masses associated with your location. Many have different layouts that can be customized using the template they provide.
Pipeline alignment sheets or maps are essential as they provide the engineer, as well as the corporate base, with a bird’s eye view of the line itself and all of its components. In emergency situations, one would refer to the sheet and be able to quickly come up with a plan to cordon off the correct area and how to locate it as quickly as possible. Companies can create the sheets for you, or software is available to make your own.