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Flexible Flowlines - Hydrogen Permeation

The Industry Challenge:

Flexible subsea flow lines can be damaged by components of the produced fluids diffusing through the inner lining and attacking the helical armour windings.  

In particular, sour‑produced fluids (those containing hydrogen sulfide) may release hydrogen that can cause embrittlement and hydrogen‑induced cracking in the steel windings.  

Understanding these damage mechanisms and how they impact the strength and service life of the flowline is required to ensure the integrity of the installation.

How We Help:

C-FER constructed a temperature controlled apparatus that subjected a full-body segment of flexible flowline to simulated sour‑produced fluids for extended exposure periods.  

Continuous monitoring quantified the rate of hydrogen permeation through the liner.  

Post-test analysis of the metal reinforcement layers revealed the amount of damage that occurred.  

This information was used by the vendor to evaluate the rate of strength degradation and potential service life of the flowline in the simulated operating conditions.

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