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Gazprom looks for pipe innovation

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World Pipelines,

Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, recently held at Chelyabinsk Pipe Rolling Plant a new working meeting on innovations in the Russian pipe industry.

The meeting featured the Deputy Chairmen of the Company's Management Committee Vitaly Markelov and Andrey Kruglov, the Management Committee Members Oleg Aksyutin, Vyacheslav Mikhalenko, and Vsevolod Cherepanov, as well as the top managers of the Pipe Producers Association, United Metallurgical Company (OMK), TMK, Chelyabinsk Pipe Rolling Plant (ChelPipe), Severstal, and other companies.

Gazprom and pipe producers planned to implement 88 scientific and technological projects, most of them providing for innovative developments, under scientific and technical cooperation programmes till 2020.

Presently, highly-deformable pipes of 1420 mm diameter are undergoing cold bending tests with a bend angle of over 6 degrees. If successful, that technology will partly replace the expensive practice of hot tube bending, thereby cutting the costs for the construction and repair of gas trunklines.

In 2016–2017, it is planned to test the first prototypes of X100-grade steel large-diameter pipes, which require less metal than the ?80 pipes currently in use.

The meeting addressed the possibilities of using a pricing formula for pipe fittings. The pricing formula was noted to have served as an efficient tool for pricing the pipes purchased by Gazprom thanks to the predictability of calculations.

Particular attention was paid to the joint efforts of Gazprom and pipe producers – OMK, TMK, ChelPipe, and Severstal – in the development of the NGV market. As provided by the memorandums signed in the autumn of 2015, the companies prepared road maps envisaging a set of measures to convert the motor vehicle fleets of the pipe producers to compressed or liquefied natural gas. It is planned to convert no less than 60% of those fleets to NGV fuel by 2020. Gas filling units may be established on the premises of the aforementioned companies.

Additionally, Alexey Miller and Alexey Mordashov, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Severstal, signed a road map for the production launch of A553/A553M-grade steel used during the construction of liquefied natural gas (LNG) production, transmission and storage facilities. The use of such steel will, among other things, almost halve the amount of metal required for manufacturing LNG storage tanks compared to similar types of steel in the same price range.

In the course of the event, Gazprom's delegation paid a visit to a workshop of ETERNO, a joint company of ChelPipe and RUSNANO focused on manufacturing stamped and welded pipe components. 

 Edited from press release by

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