Pig Launcher / Receiver
FB Group supplied Pipeline Pig Launchers and Receivers are custom engineered products that meet customer, environmental and industry standards. The Pig Launcher/ Receiver is built for ease of operation and longevity of service and can be offered with multiple options. FB will supply the ultimate design that meets with your technical and commercial requirements.
What is a Pig Launcher/Receiver?
Pigging of pipelines refers to the practice of using pipeline inspection gauges or ‘pigs’ to perform various operations on a pipeline without stopping the flow of the product in the pipeline. The name of the Pig is derived from the squealing sound they make while traveling through a pipeline. These maintenance operations include but are not limited to cleaning and inspection of the pipeline. This is accomplished by inserting the pig into a Pig Launcher – a funnel shaped section at the beginning of the pipeline. The launcher is then closed and the pressure of the product in the pipeline is used to push the pig along the pipe until it reaches the receiving trap – named he ‘pig catcher’ or pig receiver.
If the pipeline contains butterfly or gate/globe valves, the pipeline cannot be pigged. Ball valves in general cause no problems because the inside diameter of the ball can be specified to the same as that of the pipe.
Pigging has been used for many years to clean larger diameter pipelines in the oil industry. These days the application of smaller diameter pigging systems is also used in various continuous and batch process plants in the need for increased operational efficiencies.
Pigging can be used for almost any section of the transfer process between, for example, blending, storage or filling systems. Pigging systems are already installed in industries handling products as lubricating oils, paints, chemicals, toiletries, and food.
Pigs are used in lube oil or painting blending: they are used to clean the pipes to avoid cross-contamination, and to empty the pipes into the product tanks (or sometimes to send a component back to its tank). Usually pigging is done at the beginning and at the end of each batch, but sometimes it is done in the midst of a batch, e.g. when producing a premix that will be used as an intermediate component.
Pigs are also used in oil and gas pipelines: they are used to clean the pipes but also there are “smart pigs” used to measure things like pipe thickness along the pipeline. They usually do not interrupt production, though some product can be lost when the pig is extracted. They can also be used to separate different products in a multi-product pipeline.
Why use a Pig Launcher/ Receiver?
A major advantage of a piggable system is the potential product savings which can be achieved. At the end of each product transfer, it is possible to clear out the contents of entire pipe line by using the pig, either forwards towards the receiving point, or backwards to the supply tank. There is no need for extensive line flushing.
Without the requirement for flushing the lines, pigging has the additional advantage of a much more rapid and reliable product changeover. Product sampling at the receipt point becomes faster because the interface between products is very clear, and the old method of checking at intervals, until the product is on-specification, is considerably shortened.
For one of our completed projects, please visit our references page.