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Autodesk Construction Cloud in the Oil & Gas Industry – Part 1

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ASt provides Integrated Workplace Management Solutions (IWMS), Computer-Aided Facility Management systems (CAFM) and Autodesk AEC solutions that help professionals deliver better customer service, significantly reduce costs and improve the productivity of their entire organisation.

‘Piping systems’ is a huge aspect in the oil and gas industry. There are critical aspects within the broad concept of piping systems which stages consists of design, construction, management and maintenance oil and gas piping. In each stage, there is always a need for collaboration and especially so in the multiple contexts of;

  • – Piping design; to ensure minimal rework is required,
  • – Pipeline condition monitoring and maintenance, along with tactics to minimize costly disruptions within operations.


Furthermore, collaboration is just as critical in the state of affairs of  construction and instalment of transportation pipelines, pipe cleaning, and maintenance checklists. In terms of collaboration, Autodesk Construction Cloud is an industry leader in ensuring the most efficient of project cooperation and alliances

In designing the pipeline and its associated piping systems, due account should be given to the operation, inspection, and maintenance requirements for the predicted life cycle and the planned conditions and criteria as set by or agreed to in advance with the personnel responsible for the operation and maintenance of the pipeline. Information needs to be shared amongst the design crew as well as the operations team. Further collaboration is also required within the design team whereby to share critical design information that covers piping material selection and designing and construction of plant piping systems, with attention paid to flexibility analysis on piping stress, a must-have component for both refineries with piping and pipeline systems.

In this blog post, we will firstly introduce to you the basic piping design stresses as a first of our series.

Piping systems generally undergo a lot of stresses when in operation due to loads and vibrations from equipment resulting in and from thermal gradients, thermal transients, weights, pressure, and bolt-up strain. Whilst undergoing different types of loads, the piping design has to address conflicting requirements between the pipe stresses whereby  flexibility is desired for its solution, versus the mechanical vibration loads whereby an ideal solution is with stiff supports. This will require on-site personnel to detect the potential tell-tale signs of piping issues, such as audible sound of vibration and have them reported during the inspection.

A discussion of different methods within the design team would be required to manage this conflict and create an optimal piping design. A method of dealing with piping issues is to provide piping supports, however different supports provide different outcomes. Some supports limits thermal loads or dynamic movement and some supports don’t. As a general rule of thumb, to allow for flexibility of the pipes, there should be a large distance between clamps, have thermal loops and just resting supports to allow for movement. However for the control of piping dynamics, shorter distances between clamps and the avoidance of free elbows are the recommended. Different codes are used for different analyses for the piping studies.

To better understand on how supports help in piping systems, it’s better to get to know about the stresses undergone by piping. A common failure mechanism of piping systems is due to low cycle fatigue which is typically caused by thermal growth and shrinkage where stresses caused exceeds the yield strength of the piping material and enter piping range. This eventually causes a failure even within a low number of cycles. Stresses caused by mechanical loadings such as pressure are known as primary stress whereas stresses from distortion of a piping system due to temperature are known as secondary stresses.


The distance between the supports also plays a part in containing the stresses of the piping systems. Personnel on site, when they notice something amiss on the piping systems on site (such as high piping movement), it will be ideal to get measurements such as the vibration of the pipes. These measurements have to be taken at different location of the pipes. To know which locations of the pipes are required to be measured to get the best predictive results, the on-site personnel would need to consult piping analysis engineers. Sometimes, the piping analysis engineers will also need measurements of additional as-built supports which are not in their design model. Information of the design and on-site conditions have to be shared between both parties and that is where Autodesk Construction Cloud can be best utilised. Design data can be easily shared with version control and user permissions.


Stay tuned for Part 2 for how Autodesk Construction Cloud can assist in the piping systems management in oil and gas industries. For enquiries, drop us an email at or give us a call on 1300 672 888.


Tai Nguyen

Tai Nguyen

Managing Director at Advanced Spatial Technologies

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ASt is an award winning company with over 24 years experience in software & hardware solutions. Specialising in design, collaboration & facility management solutions with Autodesk, Bluebeam PDF & FMSystems. We also offer trusted HP, Dell & Lenovo hardware, professionally customised to your work needs. Our professional services team offers support, training, configuration & CAD drafting. Contact us on 1300 672 888 or for more info.

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