GAIL launches satellite-based portal to monitor pipelines

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To address pipeline safety concerns, and utilising space technology for its pipeline application state-run energy major GAIL (India) Limited has launched a surveillance geo-portal  ‘Bhuvan-GAIL Portal’  in collaboration with National Remote Sensing Centre, a unit of ISRO.  

GAIL is deploying space technology to monitor the pipeline’s Right of Use (RoU). It has more than 13,000 km of pipeline network, which is monitored monthly via helicopter surveys.

Key facts about ‘Bhuvan-GAIL Portal’ :-

  • GAIL will begin live satellite monitoring of its pipeline RoU by 2016. It is also seeking alternative methods such as advanced Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), which can be integrated with ‘Bhuvan-GAIL Portal’.
  • GAIL has also developed an innovative mobile application  from which pictures of untoward incidents,taken from any mobile phone, can be uploaded instantly on the portal. 
  • A report system integrated with the Bhuvan-GAIL portal can send alerts to relevant executives through SMS and e-mail, regarding the changes noted along the RoU as well as the arrival of any new satellite photos. 
  • With recent progress in satellite-sensing technology, availability of new high-resolution satellites, object-oriented image analysis, there is the possibility to introduce space technology for pipeline monitoring applications.
  • The Bhuvan-GAIL portal is operated via manual as well as auto-change analysis options to monitor changes along the natural gas pipeline RoU. Change analysis can be undertaken with this technology within the RoU and outside the RoU up to 1 km of the risk zone.

Importance of ​Pipeline security :-

Oil and gas installations are critical infrastructure of high importance and value. If a pipeline is damaged, significant revenues will be lost, harm may be caused to the environment, and the leakage could be a potential danger to the local population. More importantly, a terrorist attack on an unprotected pipeline could have catastrophic consequences.

The protection of oil, gas and refined product pipelines against sabotage, illegal tapping and terrorist action, combined with the detection of leaks and in-line equipment failure, is a high priority in all countries, but has been very difficult to achieve.

Bhuvan-GAIL Portal will provide greater visibility into the pipeline network and buy operators additional time before an event occurs, allowing for repairs, evacuations or a security response to reduce potential damage or losses.

​About GAIL (India) Limited :-

GAIL (India) Limited is the largest state-owned natural gas processing and distribution company in India, It is headquartered in New Delhi. GAIL has been conferred with the Maharatna status on 1 Feb 2013, by the Government of India. Only six other Public Sector Enterprises (PSEs) enjoy this coveted status amongst all central CPSEs.

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