Internal Pipe Tracing
Internal heat tracing is used to internally heat pipes where external tracing is impractical. Such situations may include:
- buried pipes
- sections under roads
- pipes in ducts
- submerged pipes
- inaccessable pipework
- pipes with existing insulation
Pipework may typically contain fuel oil or other fluids.
Heat Trace manufacture and supply a complete system which may comprise:
- heating circuits, metal sheathed, mineral insulated
- fabricated stub pipes for exiting heating cables
- junction boxes for power, series or star point connections
- temperature controls; either capillary or solid state
- control panels
- thermal insulation (where appropriate)
See photos (right) - Installation of Intertrace for Mobil, Australia
Heat Trace design the system so that the heating load attains the desired pipe temperature. Loads are calculated to take account of losses from pipes which may be buried in soil/sand etc, surrounded by air, or submerged in water. In the latter case, a closed cell insulation system will almost certainly be required, whilst insulation may also be necessary, or desired, for open pipework. Cables are rated so that they operate at safe temperatures. Sheath materials are selected to be chemically resistant to the fluid in which they are immersed. Cables may be single or multiple runs arranged for single or three phase connections.
Heat Trace normally install or supervise the installation of the system. This includes drawing of the cables into the pipes, heater cable jointing, anchoring of circuits at pipe exit points and termination via specially fabricated sealed stub pipes into junction boxes. After installation of temperature controls and, where required, control panels/thermal insulation/electrical mains wiring, the circuits are meter tested for continuity and insulation resistance prior to filling the pipework and commissioning.
Auxiliary circuits are often installed for emergencies.