Various vibration based techniques have been implemented in the field of condition and structural health monitoring. However, the major challenge in monitoring technology is to detect failure with high confidence and less false call. This is mainly because of varying environmental and operational conditions while monitoring assets. In the oil and gas industry, vibration in process piping has become a common problem to many operators. In recent years there have been increasing incidents of vibration related fatigue in piping systems both in offshore and onshore petrochemical plants. The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) reported 21% of the hydrocarbon releases in terms of “immediate cause” for offshore process plants are caused by vibration induced fatigue. Thus, the impact increases releases probability given that majority equipment in any process facility are piping; undoubtedly cause problems in any safety related studies.
Process piping is traditionally designed on the basis of static analysis with little attention paid to vibration induced fatigue. Vibration, especially with regard to small bore connections, has normally been considered on ad-hoc basis or reactive action after the design stage or following fatigue failures. Some incidents related to vibration induced fatigue comes unnoticed; long-span onshore or subsea pipelines for example suffer such problem without giving any information about the impeding failures. The core of the problems has been identified as a result of number reported incidents such as the ones published by HSE, Energy Institute (EI) technical codes, guidelines and standards, or pipeline and riser loss of containment (PARLOC). Equipment failure due to improper piping design and lack of effective piping support are considered amongst the main contributions. Piping designs such as poor support for small pipe components, poor sizing and lack of consideration for additional stresses for pipe-to-pipe joints can cause bending stresses at the junction being increased to the point of failure.