Lonestar Automated Welding provided two mechanised welding Fill and Cap stations for the Colongra Lateral Pipeline project.
Subcontractor on the Colongra Lateral Pipeline, Diona, approached Lonestar to use mechanised welding systems for flux-cored arc welding (FCAW) filling and capping on the
42 inch diameter pipeline strings.
During procedural trials, it had been decided that semi-automatic root and hot pass works would be undertaken by Diona, with Lonesar to carry out filling and capping using a mechanised welding system for the string welds. Lonestar provided two mechanised welding stations for the Colongra project consisting of four operational welding systems to complete 500 joins of
42 inch x 24 mm wall thickness and 30 mm wall thickness.
Lonestar Director Geoff Barker said “It was a pleasure to be associated with the peaking power station project run by primary contractor, Jemena. They allowed us to be contracted by Diona with little reference of our previous experience in Australia. The success of welding trials on the
42 inch pipe helped with their decision making process and confirmed that the weld quality and production was suitable.
“Both Diona and Jemena’s professionalism allowed a smooth transition for automated welding to take place on the project,” Mr Barker said.
Semi-automatic welding and mechanised welding procedures were qualified during this period and contingencies were made by Diona to ensure success.
Two experienced American contractors were used as supervision and back up operators, along with two local employees to provide general assistance. Diona provided semi-automatic welding crews for root and hot pass welds, as well as tie in welds.
“Diona’s co-operation with Lonestar allowed this project to run as it did. We would like to thank them all for the efforts which allowed us to complete our scope of work,” Mr Barker said.
Mr Barker said that Lonestar anticipated operational challenges before beginning welding on the project, allowing successful delivery. “There were some days in which production was really moving to the point where the operators had welded for eight hours out of eleven, with habitat movements and pre-heat being their only break. We had foreseen this and had three other guys qualified prior to and during the project for temporary relief when required.”
Prior to working on the Colongra Lateral Pipeline project, Lonestar said that it faced an uphill battle to convince welding contractors of the operational viability of mechanised welding systems.
Lonestar has been in operation since July 2006. Originally formed by boilermakers based in Queensland, the company’s experience consists of submerged arc welding and welding to codes, which proved important for this project.
The company said that it plans to introduce associated equipment with its welding systems to provide extended automation in welding including pipe facing machines, reduced bevel angles, high deposition metal cored wires, internal line up clamps with copper backing, and other associated components that enhance production. Weld defects and repairs can be reduced or eliminated with the associated mechanised welding equipment.
For more information about Lonestar Automated Welding’s services visit www.lonestarwelds.com.au