Pneumatic Transport – State of the Art – Desk research


Updated 16th May 2007 – Noel Hodson, Oxford.



Searches of the World-Wide-Web:









Pneumatic Transport – State of the Art – Desk research.. 1




1850’s TECHNOLOGY.. 6










The Pneumatic Post of Paris 1866-2006. 8

Part 1. 8

Introduction. 8

The Parisian Network. 9

Today. 10

Pneumatic tube.. 12

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 12

Pneumatic Post 13

Historical uses of pneumatic post 13

Current usage. 15

Present uses. 15

Powdered goods and powdered foods: 16

EG 1 -  FLSmidth-Pneumatic Transport 16


EG 3 – Research in Germany - Pneumatic transport of coarse grained particles in horizontal pipes 17


Large Pipelines, Building and Routing.. 18

Water -  72inch (6 feet or 1.83 meters) Pipe. 18

Waste Water – 90 inches or 2.28 meters pipe. 18


Europe: Assessment of Energy Saving in Oil Pipelines (AESOP) 19

Overtrawling of large diameter pipeline trials JIP.. 22

Fishermen have been concerned in recent years about the laying of large diameter pipelines in the North Sea. 22

Very Large Diameter FRP pipe from Future Pipe Industries. 23

Floating Capsules. 25

Dynamic simulation of the motion of capsules in pipelines. 25

10 March 2000 - Loughborough University awarded prestigious Personal Research Chair from the Royal Academy of Engineering and BG Technology. 31

Supplies Uncertain for Eastern Europe.. 31

Prof. Phil Hopkins Director, Centre for Pipeline Engineering. 32 32

Pipeline Capsule Update.. 33

Russia.. 35

Third International Specialized Fair – Kiev «Pipeline Transport — 2007». 36

Australia. 38

Segments -The major products and services covered in this market research report are: Gas pipelines Oil pipelines 38

Activities - The primary activities of companies in this industry are:  The primary activities of firms in this industry comprise: 38

Netherlands. 38

Pipeline transport studies and comparisons with road, rail and sea. 38

Electromagnetic drive  - USA.. 39

Pipeline transport –v- truck transport 40

Germany – Posch & Partners. 41

Pipeline transport of bulk materials. 41

Czech Republic.. 41

OGA Transporte Neumatico.. 42

ZVVZ a.s. Low Pressure Transport 43

Low pressure transport 43

Medium pressure transport 43

High pressure transport 43

Pneumatic channel transport 43

Title: Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline.. 43

March 26, 2001 (Computerworld). 47

Pnuetrans Systems Limited - Toronto.. 49

TubeExpress 52












FoodTubes will, for example in the UK, build a circle or loop of pipelines of 1,000 kilometers or more, in which capsules will, for example, travel north up the western arm and south down the eastern arm. The FoodTube will link all major food distribution centres including farms, wholesale markets, food factories and retail supermarkets. It is envisaged that flexible, lightweight capsules will operate inside rigid pipes of 1 meter (3ft 3ins) diameter and 2 metres (6ft 6ins) long. Capsules will have wheels or 3 or 4 bands around or embedded in them with roller-bearings in the bands; and the capsules will have flexible collars at both ends, or a single collar in the middle, to form an air-tight, non-rigid, low friction seal with the pipes. The capsules will be, short-life, free running, be made of flexi-materials to allow for slight bending, but are unlikely to be floating or suspended by magnets, air or fluid in the pipes.  The roller-bearings or wheels may be on springs to deal with small, uneven pipeline blemishes.



























The pipelines will be built of strong materials but the capsules will be lightweight and disposable. Some capsules may be designed to also serve as instant shop display cases to reduce handling, packing and unpacking.


All capsules, empty or full, will travel round the loop/circle of the pipeline. Each will carry an electronic address and gate-control system which will open valves to conduct the vacuum/pressure air flow to side-loops or exits for loading and unloading.


Air Pumps (possibly specially adapted LIMs (linear induction motors) driving capsules, which in turn drive air flows) will be located every 1/2 to 3 kilometers, depending on gradients. Thus each capsule is subjected to pushing and pulling forces. Approximately 200 capsules of 2 metres long spaced 3 metres apart will occupy a 1 kilometer run of pipeline. The gradient, the weight of these capsules and the weight of the volume of air in the pipeline will dictate the power of the pumps and the engines that drive them. The pumps’ engines could be electric, drawing clean energy from renewable power resources (tidal, wave, wind etc).





Internet Search Results:




Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline.Basic Concept,

Practical Considerations, and Current

Research – by Henry Liu


Pneumatic capsule pipeline (PCP) uses air blown through a pipeline to propel capsules (wheeled vehicles carrying cargoes) through the pipeline. It is a modern and large version of the century-old technology of “tube transport” used rather widely and successfully in the first half of the 20th century in major European and U.S. cities for transporting mail, parcels, telegraphs, documents, cash, and other lightweight materials.


Modern PCP systems, such as those used in Japan for transporting limestone to a cement plant, use large wheeled capsules moving heavy cargoes through pipes of 3-ft diameter, approximately. Each capsule can carry almost two tons of cargo. The system is driven by blowers located near the beginning of the pipeline, and it is highly automated (by computers and programmable logic controllers). The system is being used very successfully in Japan, with a high reliability record. Yet, only limited use exists today due to its high unit freight transportation cost in $/ton as compared to that by truck. The unit cost is high due to low system throughput (freight capacity). Major improvement in throughput can be made by replacing the pumping mechanism from blowers (which are used currently), to electromagnetic pumps (for the future systems), and using off-line loading/unloading. Research in such improvements of PCP is currently underway at the Capsule Pipeline Research Center at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Key words: capsule pipeline, PCP, pneumatic capsule pipeline, tube freight, underground freight transport.





1850’s TECHNOLOGY: The vacuum pipeline has been used since about 1850 and is widely known. It has been used or proposed as a method for transporting goods and people for 150 years.  Today there are pneumatic engineers in all countries and pneumatic pipelines are used for a wide diversity of practical purposes.


NO DIRECTLY COMPARABLE SYSTEM:  It seems there is no comparable system in use, as working examples of the capsule system proposed for FoodTubes.  The flexibility and inexpensiveness of using road vehicles (low wages and low fuel prices) has discouraged investment into alternative transport for the past 50 years or more. The most similar, recent conceptualization seems to be by scientist Henry Liu in the USA (see INDEX)



SMALLER, SIMILAR SYSTEMS: The Paris pneumatic postal system transports capsules of about 8cms ( 3 inches) diameter carrying packets around an extensive network of tens of kilometers. The capsules are ten times smaller than envisaged for FoodTubes and have no wheels or roller-bearings. In modern times the capsules are fitted with electronic addressing systems. Such systems date back to 1850 and are well understood.


LARGE, HEAVY INDUSTRY, CAPSULE SYSTEMS: There are numerous examples of 1 metres diameter capsules being used in modern industry to carry ore, coal and similar cargos through vacuum pipelines. The capsules are made of heavy duty iron, steel or aluminium, to cope with the heavy contents, and run on wheels.


FOOD PIPELINES FOR POWDERED FOOD: There are many modern examples in the food industry of powders being blown into suspension in air streams and transported at speeds of 20-40 KPH around factory sites. Such air-stream systems are also found in the chemical industries. Air-stream suspensions are particularly useful for feeding mixers, grinders and furnaces – e.g. coal dust being fed into fires.

The technology for these processes is modern and evolving. Pipes are generally narrow and no larger than 15cms (6 inches) diameter. FoodTubes can probably benefit from the knowledge of valves and switching air flows, used in the industry.


LARGE DIAMETER PIPES FOR OIL, GAS AND WATER TRANPORT:  Technology for transporting water, sewage and oil & gas through large diameter pipelines over long distances is sophisticated and constantly evolving.  Modern pipelines of up to 3 metres diameter are laid or constructed in various parts of the world. The know-how is current in the civil-engineering industry.


CAPSULES: There seems to be little modern technology concerned with making, directing and addressing capsules. Perhaps some of the knowledge needed for FoodTubes can be found in the maintenance sector which makes “pigs” and “smart pigs” – that are sent through pipelines to clean and repair them.  Capsules that “float” within pipelines on cushions of fluid, air and electromagnetism are in use but FoodTubes may be able to rely on simple, lightweight capsules running on bearings or wheels.


LOGISTICS and NETWORKS:  FoodTubes will rely heavily on the skills of the transport industry in planning routes and in the skills of the computer industry. Both are highly active and accessible.


FLUID DYNAMICS: Pushing air through pipes, with and without capsules, is a part of the science of fluids. This discipline dates back thousands of years and the mathematics and laws that govern fluids are well understood.






























A pig, also known as a “smart” pig, is a generic term signifying any independent, self-contained device, tool, or vehicle that is inserted into and moves through the interior of a pipeline for inspecting, dimensioning, or cleaning. These tools are commonly referred to as ‘pigs’ because of the occasional squealing noises that can be heard as they travel through the pipe.



RICE UNIVERSITY - Several inline pipe inspection systems dominate industry. The most common systems used are “pigs” or “smart pigs” that utilize fluid pressure to flow along the pipeline and can reach velocities of up to seven miles per hour depending on driving pressure. Different types of pigs serve a variety of functions such as batching or separating dissimilar products, cleaning pipes, and inspecting internal pipe surfaces. They have a simple structure, are economical to use, and thus many large pipelines are currently designed with pigging maintenance in mind. however, pigs must have high fluid pressure, cannot stop at arbitrary distances, and cannot maneuver through various pipe configurations such as elbows. Inspection pigs utilize drive cups on their front to transfer fluid pressure into a driving force. Thus, inspection pigs must have a diameter close to that of the pipe ID and they may get stuck due to material buildup or pipe deformations. To maintain high enough fluid propulsion, inline inspection pigs are usually large (24 inches to 36 inches in diameter) with the smallest commercially available pig 6 inches in diameter [2].

They cannot get through smaller pipes, tight turns, and some valves. Other types of

commercially available inline pipe inspection systems include tethered robots, which have limited range and mobility



The Pneumatic Post of Paris 1866-2006

by J.D. Hayhurst O.B.E.

Edited by C.S. Holder

Prepared in digital format by Mark Hayhurst

Copyright © 1974. The France & Colonies Philatelic Society of Great Britain.

Part 2 of 3
3 of 3


Part 1


The first half of the 19th century saw an unprecedented acceleration of communication through the introduction of the electric telegraph. Its principal application was to commercial intelligence for the merchants on the stock exchanges for whom fortunes could be won by the receipt of advance information, but the gain in speed from the telegraph could be lost if a message took a long time to get from the telegraph office to the stock exchange. It was to avoid this delay that in 1853 J. Latimer Clark installed a 220 yard long pneumatic tube connecting the London Stock Exchange in Threadneedle Street with the Central Station in Lothbury of the Electric Telegraph Company which had been incorporated in 1846. There were similar installations in Berlin in 1865 between the Central Telegraph Office and the Stock Exchange, and in 1866 in Paris out of the place de la Bourse.

Other cities followed and tube systems were opened not only for the transport of telegrams but also for individual letters and for letters in bulk. The transport of letters in bulk required large diameter tubes such as exist today in Hamburg and as once existed in a number of American cities. Provision for the transport of individual letters was made in Vienna and Prague, Berlin, Munich, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Naples, Milan, Paris and Marseilles. There were ephemeral installations for private letters at the South Kensington Exhibition of 1890, at the Karlsbad Philatelic Exhibition of 1910, and at the Turin International Exhibition of 1911.

Today, the pneumatic post survives only in Paris and Italy. Pneumatic tubes are still however widely used for the transport inside many cities of the world of small batches of telegrams, express letters and air mail letters. These tubes are generally of a diameter of about 3 inches and the messages are carried in cylinders which are propelled along the tube by an air pressure differential from the back to the front, attaining speeds of around 25 mph. Letters and cards which have been transported in the tubes are invariably creased where they have been rolled up for insertion in a cylinder.

The Parisian Network

The network in Paris was commenced in 1866 by the construction of an experimental line between the telegraph offices at Grand Hotel and place de la Bourse. This was extended in 1867 into a one-way hexagon from place de la Bourse through the telegraph offices rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau, rue de Rivoli, rue des Saints-Peres, the Central Telegraph Office (rue de Grenelle), rue Boissy d'Anglas, and back to Grand Hotel. During the following decade single line polygonal systems were linked to this hexagonal system and a double tube (two-way) was laid between Central and Bourse, but the network remained always within the limits of the pre-1791 octroi of Paris, roughly corresponding to the inner arrondissements.

Figure 1. Map of the Parisian Pneumatic Post Network.

In 1879, with the opening of the service to the public, there was a new motive for expansion and, in 1881 plans were approved to extend the network of tubes across the whole of Paris. There were to be four stages each taking about one year to achieve: by 1 February 1882 the 16th and parts of the 15th and 17th arrondissements; by 1 April 1883 the rest of the 17th, the 18th, and part of the l9th; by 1 February 1884 the rest of the l9th, the 12th and 20th; by 15 December 1884 the rest of the 15th, the 13th and 14th. The system of tubes running across the whole of Paris (generally located in the sewers) consisted of tubes of 65 mm diameter but from 1888 many tubes of 80 mm diameter were installed and today about one-third of the system uses the larger diameter. Also from 1888 began the elimination of the one-way polygonal networks and their replacement by double tubes.

Since the end of the l9th century there have been numerous detail changes of the network inside Paris but only one tube has gone outside Paris: that to Neuilly opened in 1914. It had been intended to extend the tubes widely through the suburbs but the 1914-18 war suspended the project and it was never revived. Nevertheless, in 1907 the transport of pneumatic mail beyond the limits of Paris was made possible by the employment of special messengers operating in 19 suburban areas. By 1916 these messengers were on bicycles and operating in most of the towns of the department of the Seine and also in Enghien-les-bains, Sevres, and St Cloud in the department of the Seine et Oise. Raincy was added in 1921.

Today, the service works inside Paris and to Neuilly by the tubes and thence outwards throughout most of the suburbs by messengers on motorcycles. Inwards the service uses post office vans between the suburban post offices and those offices on the limits of Paris which are on the tube network.

There is also another network between French government offices radiating from Central but with one line joining the Senate and the -Assemblee Nationale with the Journal Official. Along this line pass the transcripts of the parliamentary debates which are printed and published within twenty-four hours.

The cylinders are propelled along the tubes pneumatically, ie by air either compressed or depressed: they are either blown forwards or sucked forwards from one office to another. The pressures come from compressors feeding groups of offices; these compressors were originally simple heads of water, then driven by steam engines, and finally by electrical machines. There are today 7 such installations, supplying pressure to 12 offices in the network.

For a long time the cylinders went from one office to the next where their contents were sorted for the next stages of their journeys. Much time was spent in the manual redirection of cylinders but, after experiments in 1931, automatic navigation was introduced using apparatus which could accept or pass on cylinders according to the setting of electrically conducting bands encircling the cylinders.

Figure 2. Pneumatic Post cylinders, new and old, showing the electrically conducting bands introduced after 1931.

The administration of the senice started with the Télégraphes since it was then intended for the transport of telegrams and the first network connected offices of the Télégraphes which were quite distinct from those of the Postes. In 1878 the Postes and the Télégraphes were joined and became the Postes et Télégraphes. Later, the Télephones was added to make the P. T. T. which still today remains the familiar designation of the Postes et Télécommunications. Inside the larger organisation, the responsibility for the pneumatic service remained with the Télégraphes or its successor the Télécommunications. The cooperation between the separate parts of the ministry is well illustrated by the events of 1927 when floods put the Segur telephone exchange out of action; telephone subscribers were allowed to send letters by tube for 30 centimes, the cost of a telephone call, instead of the normal 1.50 franc charge. Although not operated by the Postes, the service must still be considered to be postal since the addressee receives the original manuscript (or typescript) message of the sender on a letter, or card, or letter-card each of which falls within the generic term 'pneu'.

The service does not have its own offices but pneus are posted in special boxes which have slits narrower than those for conventional mail. The fusion in 1878 of the Postes and Télégraphes led to a rationalisation of their of fines and the purely telegraphic of fines gradually disappeared. At the end of 1879, the first year of public use of the pneumatic tubes, there were 36 of fines in Paris with pneumatic installations but only 6 of them provided a postal service; before the end of the century all solely telegraph offices had been closed. The telegraph of fines had been numbered serially in 1871 and the post of fines in 1863; as the two merged the joint offices took the postal number. Up to their individual closures the few telegraph offices which remained were allotted postal numbers as, for example, Ecole Militaire,which had had the number 15 as a telegraph of fine in 1871, was given the number 46 in the postal series until its closure in 1891. These office numbers had a purpose: an instruction of 1871 required that each telegram (and hence, later, each pneu) should carry in its top left-hand corner the two digit number of the office of despatch preceded by the number of that telegram as recorded in the daily register. Thus the 341st pneu sent out on one day by Bourse (98) would carry 34198. Since the first nine post of fines were numbered only by a single digit their telegraph counters used the post office numbers preceded by a zero. These office numbers were not initially used to indicate the destination of a pneu. At the office of posting, the name of the office nearest the addressee was written in the top left hand corner so as to facilitate its navigation through the tube network; just after the turn of the century there was a gradual replacement of the office name by the office number.

There was a curious situation in 1900 when the seven post of fines at the International Exhibition were temporarily allotted telegraph office numbers from 10 to 16, numbers which were being used at the same time by the normal Paris post of fices 10 to 16. To avoid confusion, the pneus from these of fines were recorded in each daily register starting at 501; thus the 27th pneu sent out on a particular day from Alma (12) would carry 52712.

Shortly afterwards, the practice of numbering pneus was discontinued.

Part 2 of 3

Pneumatic tube

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

Pneumatic tubes, also known as capsule pipelines or Lamson tubes, are systems in which cylindrical containers are propelled through a network of tubes by compressed air or by vacuum. They are used for transporting physical objects.

Pneumatics can be traced back to Hero of Alexandria in the 1st century AD. The Victorians used capsule pipelines to transmit telegraph messages, or telegrams, to nearby buildings from telegraph stations.

While they are commonly used for small parcels and documents - now most often used at banks or supermarkets - they were originally proposed in the early 1800s for transport of heavy freight. It was once envisioned that networks of these massive tubes might be used to transport people.

Pneumatic Post


Pneumatic post or pneumatic mail is a system to deliver letters through pressurized air tubes. It was invented by the Scottish engineer William Murdoch in the 1800s and was later developed by the London Pneumatic Dispatch Company. Pneumatic post systems were used in several large cities starting in the second half of the 19th century, but were largely abandoned during the 20th century.

It was also speculated that a system of tubes might deliver mail to every home in the US. A major network of tubes in Paris was in use until 1984, when it was finally abandoned in favor of computers and fax machines. In Prague, Czech Republic, a network of approximately 60 kilometers for delivering mail and parcels still exists. However, due to damage sustained during the 2002 European floods the service has been put on indefinite hiatus.

Typical current applications are in banks and hospitals. Many large retailers (such as Home Depot or CostCo in the US) use pneumatic tubes to transport checks or other documents from cashiers to the accounting office. One system lists a speed of 10 m/s. [1]

Pneumatic post stations usually connected post offices, stock exhanges, banks and ministries. Italy was the only country to issue postage stamps (between 1913 and 1966) specifically for pneumatic post. Austria, France, and Germany issued postal stationery for pneumatic use.

Historical uses of pneumatic post





 (Pneumatic Transportation of People  

Here refers to the transporting of people inside pneumatic tubes; other forms of transportation that use pneumatics for propulsion are not considered.)

In 1812, George Medhurst first proposed, but never implemented, blowing passenger carriages through a tunnel.

Brunel built an atmospheric railway on an 83.7-kilometre section of the South Devon Railway between Exeter and Plymouth, England in the 19th century It was also tried on the London & Croydon Railway in 1845, but was soon abandoned.

In 1861, the London Pneumatic Despatch Company built a system large enough to move a person, although it was intended for parcels. The October 10, 1865 inauguration of the new Holborn Station was marked by having the Duke of Buckingham, the chairman, and some of the directors of the company blown through the tube to Euston (a five minute trip).

A 550 metre (m) pneumatic passenger railway was exhibited at the Crystal Palace in 1864. This was a prototype for a proposed Whitehall Pneumatic Railway that would have run under the River Thames linking Waterloo and Charing Cross. Digging was started in 1865 but was stopped in 1868 due to financial problems.

Alfred Ely Beach's experimental pneumatic elevated subway on display in 1867Cross-section of Beach's subway car

In 1867 at the American Institute exhibition in New York, Alfred Ely Beach demonstrated a 32.6 m long, 1.8 m diameter pipe that was capable of moving 12 passengers plus conductor. In 1869, the Beach Pneumatic Transit Company of New York constructed in secret a 95 m long, 2.7 m diameter pneumatic subway line under Broadway. The line only operated for a few months, closing after Beach was unsuccessful in getting permission to extend it. (Though widely believed to have been demolished to make way for the current subway system, some think the system may still exist buried beneath the city. An old pneumatic tunnel is seen in the theatrical movie Ghostbusters 2 and in the direct-to-video movie An American Tail: The Treasure of Manhattan Island.)

In the 1960s, Lockheed and MIT with the United States Department of Commerce did feasibility studies on a vactrain system powered by ambient atmospheric pressure and "gravitational pendulum assist" to connect cities on the East Coast of the US. They calculated that the run between Philadelphia and New York City would average 174 metres per second.

When those plans were abandoned as too expensive, Lockheed engineer L.K. Edwards founded Tube Transit, Inc. to develop technology based on "gravity-vacuum transportation". In 1967 he proposed a Bay Area Gravity-Vacuum Transit for California that would run along side the then-under-construction BART system. It was never built.

Current usage

The technology is still used on a smaller scale. A large number of drive-up banks use pneumatic tubes to transport cash and documents between cars and tellers. Most hospitals have a system to deliver drugs, documents and specimens to and from laboratories and nurses' stations. Many factories use them to deliver parts quickly across large campuses. Many larger stores use systems to securely transport excess cash from checkout stands to back offices, and to send change back to cashiers. NASA's original Mission Control Center in Houston, Texas had pneumatic tubes connecting controller consoles with staff support rooms. Denver International Airport is noteworthy for the large number of pneumatic tube systems, including a 10-inch diameter system for moving aircraft parts to remote concourses, a 4-inch system for United Airlines ticketing, and a robust system in the parking toll collection system with an outlet at every booth.


Present uses:

P neumatic transportation uses compressed air for propulsion; air is blown through an airtight tube, propelling a capsule, canister or other vessel. It has had some success, although efforts to use it to transport people have failed.

Pneumatic transportation dates back to the 1860s, when engineer T.W. Rammel won a huge contract with the British Post Office for a network of pneumatic tubes to carry mail throughout London. By the turn of the century, New York City had an extensive system that moved letters and parcels in a loop around Manhattan, with an extension into Brooklyn. Enough pressure was used to propel a canister containing 700 letters at 30 miles per hour. Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and St. Louis all employed pneumatic systems for mail distribution. By the 1950s, all of the systems had been abandoned in favor of newer technology – trucks.

Pneumatic systems on a smaller scale were used in retail stores, where a salesclerk would forward a customer’s money to a central cashier in a small canister; change and a receipt would be returned via the canister.

A pneumatic system to transport people was developed by Alfred E. Beach in New York City in 1870. Using his own money and operating in secrecy, Beach managed to dig a block-long subway tunnel right across from City Hall. A huge rotary blower, dubbed the Western Tornado, produced one hundred thousand cubic feet of air per minute and drove the subway car at about ten miles an hour on a gentle cushion of air. The public clamored by the thousands to pay $.25 to ride the pneumatic subway which featured a luxurious car, complete with upholstered seats, oil paintings and chandeliers.

While it captured the public’s fancy, the high cost of producing enough air to transport trains, along with the difficulty of controlling the pneumatic power for the frequent stops needed for a subway line, doomed Beach’s effort. Such economic and technical failures are common to transportation futuristics.

Previous failure did not deter Lockheed engineer L.K. Edwards from trying to resurrect the idea of a high-speed tube transport in the 1960s. Lockheed eventually decided to drop its research in this area, but Edwards persisted, forming Tube Transit, Inc. to exploit “gravity-vacuum transportation.” He made presentations to federal and local transportation officials extolling the virtues of his concept, but his pneumatic subway ultimately was no more successful than Alfred Beach’s.

Pneumatic transportation survives today as a means for moving commodities, usually through pneumatic capsule pipelines (PCPs). Research is focused on developing larger diameter pipelines with greater capacity, but the problem of how to compete economically with freight movement by truck or rail persists.







Powdered goods and powdered foods:


There are numerous modern systems which pump powders without capsules through pipelines. The pipes tend to be relatively narrow, less than 12inches diameter. The powders are suspended in jets of air and are usually transported short distances within industrial complexes.


EG 1 -  FLSmidth-Pneumatic Transport is a worldwide leader in pneumatic bulk conveying for the process and materials handling industries. We offer innovative technology and broad experience in all aspects of material handling systems.


Our experience speaks for itself. Since Fuller began in 1926, our pneumatic conveying systems have moved millions of tons of dry bulk solids in numerous applications.


Up-to-date technology and proven equipment are only two of our strengths:

We excel at system engineering, designing and installing complete bulk material transfer systems.

Let us put our experience to work for you.


EG 2 – The ENGINEERING TOOL BOX USA - Some common solids as flour, sugar, cement and many more, can be suspended and transported in air - referred as pneumatic conveying. A pneumatic conveying system may transport solids up to approximately 50 mm size. The powder or solid must be dry, with no more than 20% moisture and not sticking.

In a pneumatic conveying system, most of the energy is used for the transport of the air itself. The energy efficiency of a pneumatic conveying plant is therefore relatively low, but this is often outweighed by easy handling and, in well designed systems, dust free solutions.

In general the length of a pneumatic system should not extend 300 m for each pneumatic unit. The products can be conveyed over long distances by connecting the systems in series.

There are three basic designs of pneumatic transport systems:

·                     dilute phase conveying at a high gas speeds (20 - 30 m/s)

·                     strand conveying at a limited gas speeds (15 - 20 m/s)

·                     dense phase conveying at a low gas speeds (5 - 10 m/s)

Pneumatic systems can operate with both positive and negative pressures - vacuum. The working pressure should not extend 40 kN/m2.

The maximum temperature rise during pneumatic compression is seldom above 5oC, which makes pneumatic transport systems suitable to sensitive products as medicines, food or similar.



EG 3 – Research in Germany - Pneumatic transport of coarse grained particles in horizontal pipes

Authors: Molerus O.1Heucke U.

Source: Powder Technology, Volume 102, Number 2, 3 March 1999, pp. 135-150(16)

Publisher: Elsevier

Keywords: Pneumatic transport; Coarse grained particles; Elevated static pressure; Plugging limit; Strand flow type of conveying; Fully suspended type of conveying; Self-sustained particle transport; Pressure drop

Language: English

Document Type: Research article

DOI: 10.1016/S0032-5910(98)00204-6

Affiliations: 1: Lehrstuhl fur Mechanische Verfahrenstechnik, Universitat Erlangen-Nurnberg, Erlangen, Germany

EG 4 – COAL DUST - The use of pulverised coal in integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plant is currently under development. The results of a project to determine the suitability of Chinese coals for dry feed to the entrained flow gasifier that forms part of the above cycle are presented. This paper also includes some basic material characterisation of the pulverised coal.Pneumatic conveying test rigs were used in conjunction with a mathematical model to generate conveying characteristics for coal at high back pressures. The overall strategy was to test both coal and surrogate at atmospheric back pressure to compare the two materials' performance, under similar conveying conditions; and to test the surrogate material at elevated back pressure, and use this data to validate a mathematical model. The similarity of behaviours of the two materials then allowed the model to be applied to the data measured for coal and so generate conveying characteristics at conditions typical of entrained flow.The mathematical model used to scale the results to high back pressures, which characterise entrained flow processes, is based on the assumption that the influence of the pressure drop due to solids is independent of the back pressure, in the range of conditions considered. Conveying characteristics were generated at a variety of back pressures ranging from 1 to 25 bar. A brief analysis of the minimum conveying velocity is also presented. Authors Cowell A, Mcglinchey D, Ansell R


Large Pipelines, Building and Routing



Water -  72inch (6 feet or 1.83 meters) Pipe - In 1998 it was determined the population growth rate in the service area of the North Texas Municipal Water District’s (NTMWD) North System would eclipse the population and demand projections. It was decided an additional parallel transmission line was needed to serve the increased demands of the region. The first parallel line needed was a 72-inch transmission line approximately seven miles in length through mostly developed subdivisions and crossing under two major highways, State Highway 121 and US-75. State Highway 121 is currently being widened to a six-lane highway with frontage roads and US-75 is currently a six-lane highway with frontage roads. Multiple routes were considered for the construction of the Allen/Plano/Frisco/McKinney 72-inch Pipeline. The route chosen had the most impacts to existing roadways, highways, utilities and subdivisions. Even with the number of impacts, it was chosen because it was the shortest and most economical route. The route is along the median of Exchange Parkway in the City of Allen which currently is a four-lane divided roadway with a future six-lane section at build out. The pipeline was constructed under the two major highways within a 90-inch tunnel totaling 1250 feet. The SH 121 crossing was especially challenging because it crossed under five, six foot by nine foot multiple box culverts and was located under a 16 foot high retaining wall at a bridge approach for the main lanes of State Highway 121. The pipeline was split in two bid packages, Phase I and Phase II. The first phase was bid in the fall of 2004 and was awarded at $13,197,000 and the second phase was bid in the fall of 2005 at a cost of $8,813,000. This paper discusses the methodology used in the pipeline route selection process and the design and construction issues associated with construction of a large diameter pipeline in a highly urban setting.


Waste Water – 90 inches or 2.28 meters pipe - The Interconnect Pipeline Project is one of three projects that make up the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) Interconnect Program. CH2M HILL was the designer for the Interconnect Pipeline Project and also provided construction inspection services. This project and two others were combined into a single active construction program for which CH2M HILL was selected to provide construction management services. The Interconnect project includes construction of a 16,300 foot (4,968m) 90-inch (228cm) raw wastewater transfer pipeline, a 13,500 foot (4,115m) 36-inch (91cm) recycled water line and 20,000 feet (6,096m) of fiber optic cable. The second project, the Interconnect Modifications Part B, includes raw wastewater connections at the Salado Creek WRC and the Dos Rios WRC. The third, the Dos Rios Recycled Water Pump Station Project, consists of a recycled water pump station at the Dos Rios WRC, and a recycled water pipeline terminal connection at the Salado Creek WRC. The primary purpose of this project is to link the Salado Creek WRC and the Dos Rios WRC together to optimize future operations. The project will allow the transport of raw wastewater to the Dos Rios WRC from the Salado Creek sewershed. At present, the Dos Rios WRC has excess treatment capacity. The link will allow SAWS to decommission the Salado Creek WRC, thereby saving approximately $5 million per year in operating costs. The recycled water pipeline will permit the use of Dos Rios WRC treated wastewater in the San Antonio recycled water system. This will maximize the yield of recycled water from SAWS’ wastewater treatment facilities. The fiber optic carrier included in the Salado to Dos Rios Interconnect Project will provide for the future Installation of DCS between the two water recycling centers.




Pipelines are a long-established safe and efficient mode of transport for crude oil and petroleum products. They are used both for short-distance transport (e.g. within a refinery or depot, or between neighbouring installations) and over long distances. An extensive network of cross-country oil pipelines in Europe meets a large proportion of the need for transportation of petroleum products.

For more than 30 years CONCAWE has been collecting facts and statistics on incidents and spills related to European cross-country pipelines. A yearly report is published and a special report was issued in 2002 compiling 30 years of pipeline performance statistics and including a map of Refineries & Oil Pipelines in Western Europe.

Other activities in this area include responding to various legislative initiatives concerning pipelines, particularly from the European Commission, but also from national governments.

This field of CONCAWE's activity is open to all companies operating oil pipelines in Europe, whether or not they are a CONCAWE Member Company. It provides a forum for the exchange of information between pipeline operators on technical progress and lessons to be learnt from incidents. In addition, a COPEX (CONCAWE Oil Pipeline Operators Experience Exchange) seminar is organised every four years for the benefit of all pipeline operators in Europe.


Europe: Assessment of Energy Saving in Oil Pipelines (AESOP).


Objectives and problems to be solved:


Oil transportation companies are experiencing a need to increase their efficiency and transport capabilities. It has been shown that the frictional pressure drops or drags, responsible for energy losses and limiting the throughput of oil pipelines, can be significantly reduced by injecting long-chain polymers (the so called flow improvers). However, the technique is not widely used by oil-pipeline companies because of the lack of design and operation knowledge at industrial scale.

The main objective of the project is to reduce the energy consumption and to increase the transport capabilities of oil pipeline networks by developing the techniques required to use long-chain polymers as Drag Reducing Agent (DRA) in European oil pipeline networks.


Description of work:

The research activity starts with experimental studies of the effect on oil product characteristics when high DRA rates are added. This task also includes the laboratory tests and analysis necessary to determine how long-chain polymers can be broken and the study of the effect on internal combustion engine and others parts of the vehicle.

In parallel, large scale experimental studies of the efficiency of long chain polymers on pipeline oil transportation systems with low DRA rates are carried out (oil products properties are not affected with these low rates). Different pipe diameters, polymer concentration and products are taken into account. At conclusion of this task, the same experimental studies are done with higher DRA rates. The data obtained serves as a basis for obtaining a model of how the polymers behave and how the injection rate affects the operation. Once the model is developed, a methodology for the use of polymers is established, considering specific instrumentation and computer aided design programs to establish the optimum design parameters regarding number of injection points and quantities to be injected and the optimal way of operating the pipelines.


Expected results and exploitation plans:

The expected results of the project are computer programmes for designing and optimal operation of oil pipelines using DRA as well as an assessment of the benefits obtained by the technique. The expected results in the installations are a reduction of more than 25 % in the energy required for ton-km of the base products and an increase in the capacity of more than 30 % in terms of ton-km.

A reduction of the oil transport cost will imply a reduction of the price of energy and this will contribute towards the competitiveness of the oil pipeline partners and of Europe and on employment prospects in general. The increasing transport capabilities that can be obtained with this technology could make other transport solutions, mainly truck fleet, become only marginal. An important social benefit can be obtained combating the saturated European road and highway system.

The results will be exploited by the two end-users in their own pipelines and also by selling the developed software to other companies.















Revolution, geopolitics and pipelines
By F William Engdahl

After a short-term fall in price below the $50 a barrel level, oil has broken through the $60 level and is likely to go far higher. In this situation one might think the announcement of the opening of a major new oil pipeline to pump Caspian oil to world markets might dampen the relentless rise in prices.

However, even when the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed on June 15 to raise its formal production quota by another 500,000 barrels per day (bpd), the reaction of NYMEX oil futures prices was to rise, not fall. Estimates are that world demand in the second half of 2005 will average at least 3 million barrels a day more than the first half of the year.

Oil has become the central theme of world political and military operations planning, even when not always openly said.

Caspian pipeline opens a Pandora's box
In this situation, it is worth looking at the overall significance of the May opening of the Baku to Ceyhan, Turkey, oil pipeline. This
1,762 kilometer long oil pipeline was completed some months ahead of plan.
The BTC (Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan) pipeline was begun in 2002 after four years of intense  international dispute. It cost about US$3.6 billion, making it one of the most expensive oil projects ever. The main backer was British Petroleum (BP), whose chairman, Lord Browne, is a close adviser to Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair. BP built the pipeline through a consortium including Unocal of the US, Turkish Petroleum Inc, and other partners.

It will take until at least late September before 10.4 million barrels can provide the needed volume to start oil delivery to the Turkish port of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean Sea. Ceyhan is conveniently near to the US airbase Incirlik. The BTC has been a US strategic priority ever since president Bill Clinton first backed it in 1998. Indeed, for the opening ceremonies in May, US Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman attended and delivered a personal note of congratulations from US President George W Bush.

As the political makeup of the Central Asia Caspian region is complex, especially since the decomposition of the Soviet Union opened up a scramble in the oil-rich region of the Caspian from the outside, above all from the US, it is important to bear in mind the major power blocs that have emerged.

They are two. On the one side is an alliance of US-Turkey-Azerbaijan and, since the "Rose" revolution, Georgia, that small but critical country directly on the pipeline route. Opposed to it, in terms of where the pipeline route carrying Caspian oil should go, is Russia, which until 1990 held control over the entire Caspian outside the Iran littoral. Today, Russia has cultivated an uneasy but definite alliance with Iran and Armenia, in opposition to the US group. This two-camp grouping is essential to understanding developments in the region since 1991.

Now that the BTC oil pipeline has finally been completed, and the route through Georgia has been put firmly in pro-Washington hands, an essential precondition to completing the pipeline, the question becomes one of how Moscow will react. Does President Vladimir Putin have any serious options left short of the ultimate nuclear one?

A Guide for the Construction Inspection of Large Diameter Water Pipelines

Russell Gibson,1 P.E.

1Principal, Water Resources, Freese and Nichols, Inc., 4055 International Plaza, Suite 200, Fort Worth, TX 76109;

The construction of large diameter pipelines is a large investment for any water utility. Achieving a quality construction project is critical to the overall performance and reliability of any water transmission system. Quality construction can also insure a longer service life for the pipeline. Therefore, the quality of the constructed pipeline is critical to the success of any water utility. The construction inspection of large diameter pipelines offers many challenges to the Owner's construction inspection teams. Large diameter pipelines typically use more complex pipe materials, bedding and backfill materials, appurtenances, corrosion protection requirements, and construction methods than do smaller diameter pipelines. Often the subtle differences between large diameter pipelines and small diameter pipelines are overlooked by inexperienced inspection teams. This paper includes an explanation of the critical components of large diameter pipeline inspection, and includes a convenient checklist for the field inspectors. The inspection checklist was developed from the author's pipeline design projects, as well as forensic engineering of pipeline failures. The paper focuses on the use of large diameter steel and concrete cylinder pipelines for water transmission service. The checklists cover important inspection and testing procedures such as right-of-way clearing and restoration; pipe handling; pipe material inspection before installation; trenching; pipe-laying; bedding and embedment around the pipe; backfill over the pipeline; internal pipe inspection after installation; inspection of appurtenances; patching of coating and lining; installation through tunnels; and hydrostatic, compaction, and non-destructive testing of pipelines.

©2005 ASCE

Overtrawling of large diameter pipeline trials JIP

Fishermen have been concerned in recent years about the laying of large diameter pipelines in the North Sea.

The perception is that these pipelines could provide an enhanced hazard to safety because they provide a larger obstacle and increase the likelihood of their fishing gear becoming snagged.

To address these concerns the DTI requested that instrumented overtrawling fishing trials with load cells and accelerometers be carried out over the Exxon-Mobil Skene pipeline to confirm that the pipeline did not present an increased hazard compared to existing pipelines, which are up to 40" diameter.

Jee set up a Joint Industry Programme (JIP) to:

The final deliverable was a report that represents the culmination of a series of tasks that have been performed in consultation, and agreement, with the fishing industry and with the participation of the Fisheries Research Services Marine Laboratory.

The benefits to the sponsors and fishermen can be summarised as follows. The work carried out by the JIP showed that:

Jee, Hildenbrook House, The Slade, Tonbridge, Kent. TN9 1HR. United Kingdom
Tel +44 (0)1732 371371  Fax +44 (0)1732 361646





Very Large Diameter FRP pipe from Future Pipe Industries

Future Pipe Industries produces large diameter FRP pipe in sizes up to 158” (13 ft) in diameter. Our Fiberstrong™ FRP pipe are the largest commercially produced pipe system in the United States; no other FRP pipe manufacturer comes even close to the large diameters produced by FPI.


Fiberstrong pipe are produced on our own state of art computer-controlled Continuous filament winding machines that allow pipe of any transportable length to be produced. Pipe produced with this process and equipment are consistently uniform in wall thickness, composition and physical properties, insuring compliance with applicable specifications that include AWWA C950, ATSM D 3517 and ASTM D3262. They are available in sizes from 16” all the way through 158”; all in standard 40’ lengths (other lengths are available). Pressure classes range from 250 to 100 psig depending on diameter.




Fiberstrong large diameter FRP pipes find many uses in infrastructure projects such as:

            • Large potable water transmission pipeline ( NSF® listed )

            • Slip lining of corroded large concrete sewer pipe & tunnels

            • Large gravity sewer and storm water drains

            • Large siphons and culverts

            • River & Seawater intakes & outfalls

            • Power plant circulating & cooling water lines

            • Large Power plant penstocks

            • Large Irrigation pipelines

            • Large Pump station headers



For standard buried applications, pipe is provided with FRP Reka couplings featuring two elastomeric rubber seals as shown below. These joints allow for angular deflections ranging from 3.0 degrees up to 0.5 degree depending on pipe diameter. They are easy to assemble and provide a water-tight joint under all normal operating conditions for all diameters. Internal joint testers are available to eliminate the need for expensive sectional pressure tests on large diameter pipelines.



Pipes can be provided with plain ends for butt-wrap joints. High axial strength pipes can also be supplied for installations where restrained joints are required and thrust blocks cannot be utilized as shown below.



Advantages of Fiberstrong large diameter FRP pipe

Excellent corrosion resistance

FRP pipe is inert and will not corrode from all known and naturally occurring soil and ground water conditions. Because the pipe is inherently corrosion resistant, it is maintenance free; requiring no periodic coating or lining. For sanitary sewer service, Fiberstrong pipe meets the stringent chemical resistance requirements of ASTM D3262.

Electrically inert

Because FRP pipe are non-metallic, they do not require any cathodic protection systems nor are they affected by stray electrical currents and can be safely installed in the vicinity of cathodically protected steel pipelines.

Long life and low life-cycle cost

Fiberstrong FRP pipe have a minimum 50 year design life. Invariably FRP pipe provide owners with the lowest life-cycle costs when compared to conventional large diameter pipe such as steel or concrete pipe, due to its long life, and maintenance-free and corrosion-free service.



Light weight

Fiberstrong FRP pipe are light weight and easy to handle. They weigh ¼th the weight of steel pipe and 1/10th the weight of concrete pipe per foot. Most pipe sections can be handled on-site with a small excavator or small crane. When used off-shore, it is common to pre-assemble 3 x 40’ pipe sections as shown below to allow 120’ of pipe to be installed underwater in one underwater operation, significantly reducing installing costs.

Excellent hydraulic characteristics

The smooth inner bore of Fiberstrong FRP pipe (Hazen Williams ‘C’ factor = 150) results in very low friction losses and reduced pumping costs. In most projects, a smaller FRP pipe diameter will provide the same flow as a larger Concrete or cement lined steel pipe. Unlike conventional pipes, the flow characteristics of FRP pipe remain the same year after year.

Long lengths & fast installation

Large diameter Fiberstrong FRP pipe is available in standard 40 foot (12 m) laying lengths. In open areas, installation rates of more than 1000 ft (300 m) per day with one crew are typical with the standard Reka couplings. Unlike steel pipe, Fiberstrong FRP pipe does not require expensive and time consuming welding.

ISO 9001 accreditation

FPI’s Gulfport, MS plant is certified to operate a quality management system meeting the requirements of ISO 9001:2000. It’s your assurance of a reliable, dependable and quality product.


Complete piping system

Our large diameter product line is complete; including fittings such as elbows, tees, reducers and flanges in pipe sizes and pressure classes produced.




The Future Pipe group is the undisputed global leader in very large diameter FRP pipe production, with tens of thousands of feet of pipe from 100” to 158” installed in mostly pressure service. Some of the world’s largest power plants rely on FPI’s FRP pipe for their sea water intakes and cooling water requirements.






Floating Capsules





Dynamic simulation of the motion of capsules in pipelines



Feng, J.; Huang, P. Y.; Joseph, D. D.



Journal of Fluid Mechanics, vol. 286, p.201-227

Publication Date:






Bibliographic Code:







Dynamic simulation of the motion of capsules in pipelines



In this paper we report results of two-dimensional simulations of the motion of elliptic capsules carried by a Poiseuille flow in a channel. The numerical method allows computation of the capsule motion and the fluid flow around the capsule, and accurate evaluation of the lift force and torque. Results show that the motion of a capsule which is heavier than the carrying fluid may be decomposed into three stages: initial lift-off, transient oscillations and steady flying. The behaviour of the capsule during initial lift-off and steady flying is analysed by studying the pressure and shear stress distributions on the capsule. The dominant mechanism for the lift force and torque is lubrication or inertia or a combination of the two under different conditions. The lift-off velocity for the ellipse in two dimensions is compared with experimental values for cylindrical capsules in pipes. Finally, the mechanisms of lift for capsules are applied to flying core flows, and it is argued that inertial forces are responsible for levitating heavy crude oil cores lubricated by water in a horizontal pipeline.

(Received February 29 1994)
(Revised September 21 1994)



J.  Feng a1, P. Y.  Huang a1 and D. D.  Joseph a1
a1 Department of Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics and the Minnesota Supercomputer Institute, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA








Results of PIPELINE TRANSPORT - 2005 International Conference

held as part of the Fourth International PIPELINE FORUM - Russia


PIPELINE TRANSPORT-2005 International Conference, which was held on May 25-26, 2005, focused on overall development of pipeline transportation industry as well as specific issues.  Topics considered were international cooperation in pipeline projects, current and new technology for pipeline construction and maintenance, implementation of pipeline projects.


Panel discussions highlighted the importance and urgency of issues in pipeline infrastructure development and sector's significant role in the fuel and energy industry as well as national economy in general. Conference demonstrated the real need for a professional discussion of the situation in the pipeline industry.



Conference participants



Among the conference participants were Russia's pipeline operators OAO Transneft, OAO Gazprom and OAO Transnefteprodukt as well as oil and gas majors such as OAO TNK-BP Management, OAO NK Rosneft and others.  Conference program included presentations by the largest manufacturers of pipeline equipment and pipeline engineering, construction and service organizations. 


310 representatives of 154 companies, organizations and mass media attended conference. Participation breakdown by country: 





The conference program was based on the concept of gradual shift from the macro level issues to the more specific technical and technological subjects.  Conference opened with general presentations by industry's key companies, which were followed by discussion of technical issues by representatives of financial and legal organizations, service companies, manufacturers of equipment etc.


Contributors from Statoil, Hydro and other foreign companies discussed international experience in development of the pipeline industry.


27 speakers at the conference represented the following companies:



1.        Austria

2.        Belarus

3.        Brazil

4.        China

5.        Croatia

6.        France

7.        Germany



8.          Hungary

9.          Italy

10.        Japan

11.        Kazakhstan

12.        Korea

13.        Latvia

14.        Netherlands


15.        Norway

16.        Poland

17.        Russia

18.        Switzerland

19.        Ukraine

20.        United Kingdom

21.        United States



Conference was sponsored by 11 Russian and foreign companies:



1.        Asset Capital Partners

2.        Baltnefteprovod

3.        Diascan

4.        Stroineft

5.        Gazprom

6.        Gidromashservice

7.        Giprotruboprovod

8.        Hydro


9.          Lazard

10.        Moody International

11.        Orggazengineering

12.        Pepeliaev, Goltsblat & Partners

13.        PRIVOD

14.        Rosneft

15.        Rosneftegazstroi

16.        Russian Oil and Gas Contractors



17.        SIV Intertrade

18.        Statoil

19.        Stroitransgaz

20.        TMK

21.        TNK-BP

22.        Transneft

23.        Transnefteprodukt

24.        Trubodetal

Mass Media


Conference mass media partners were the following industry printed and web publications:



1.        Gidromashservice

2.        INA

3.        KazTransOil

4.        Lazard

5.        Moody International Group

6.        Privod



7.        SAP

8.        SIV Intertrade

9.        TNK-BP

10.      Ukrtransnafta

11.      United Metallurgical Company

27 printed and web publications and two TV channels were accredited at the conference:



1.        Bolshoi Biznes

2.        FINAM

3.        Interfax-PIA

4.        World Energy

5.        Oil-Gas

6.        Neft I Kapital

7.        Neft Rossii


8.        RusEnergyLaw

9.        Oil Industry

10.      Petroleum Argus

11.      Platts

12.      Truboprovodny Transport Nefti magazine (Oil Piping Systems)

13.      CPKR

Conference Official Publication


Official publication PIPELINE TRANSPORT-2005 was especially designed and published for the conference.


Its purpose was to give companies participating in the conference an opportunity to introduce their technology and equipment as well as experience in implementing pipeline projects.


Publication was structured according to the following subjects:

·        Engineering

·        Construction

·        Equipment

·        Information Technology


PIPELINE TRANSPORT-2005 was distributed at the conference and exhibition as well as among the industry companies and organizations.




1.        Bloomberg

2.        Bolshoi Biznes

3.        Delovye Lyudi

4.        Expert

5.        France 2 TV Channel

6.        Interfax-PIA

7.        Khimicheskaya Tekhnika, Kompressornaya Tekhnika

8.        Marksheideriya I Nedropolzovaniye

9.        Mestorozhdeniye

10.      World Energy



11.      RusEnergyLaw

12.      Neft I Gaz

13.      Neft Rossii

14.      NefteCompass

15.      Oil Industry

16.      Oborudovaniye, Technology Magazine

17.      Oil and Capital

18.      Oil and Gas Eurasia

19.      Petroleum Argus

20.      Platts


21.        Potentsial

22.        Prime-Tass 

23.        RBC

24.        Reuters

25.        RIA-Novosti

26.        Rosbalt

27.        RusEnergy Information Agency

28.        Truboprovodny Transport Nefti magazine 

29.        Vesti, RTR TV News Program



Conference Catalog


Conference catalog was especially designed and published for the event. It contains official addresses to the participants of the Pipeline Forum, information on organizers, participants, sponsors and mass media partners. 






University of East London


Pipeline 101

View some examples of how technology is being used along pipeline systems in your community to improve the safety and the reliability of these important underground energy highways. And coming soon…. take a tour through pipeline technology— learn about the squeal of pipeline “pigs” and how they can provide an insider’s view of the intricacies of some types of pipelines.



Midwest is a pipeline construction leader in the Oil and Gas Industry, serving the industry predominantly in Western Canada since 1974.  We offer a complete range of services, including new pipeline construction, rehabilitation and maintenance, water crossings installation or replacements, and facilities fabrication.

We create value for our clients through the application of our innovative management style, knowledge base and advanced technology. Midwest is experienced in mainline and gathering system construction up to 1219 mm (48”) in diameter.


TÜV Rheinland Group


The 2004 symposium was opened by Dr. Wolfram Oppermann, technology director of the Board of Directors of the TÜV Rheinland Group. In his address he referred in particular to the main focus of the event, namely the inspection and assessment of older pipelines as well as developments in national and European pipeline legislation and contributions from practical pipeline construction.



ITI Energy

This R&D project is to develop a low-cost, lightweight, high strength pipeline technology capable of being manufactured on-site in a continuous process. The resulting technology is expected to have a range of key energy applications, including onshore and offshore pipelines for the oil & gas industry.

The R&D project and the associated commercial development, which will be based in Scotland, involve collaboration between ITI Energy and Helical Pipelines Ltd. Discussions are ongoing with a number of Scottish based businesses who will be contributing research and development expertise to the project.


Loughborough University

10 March 2000 - Loughborough University awarded prestigious Personal Research Chair from the Royal Academy of Engineering and BG Technology

Loughborough University's Faculty of Engineering has been awarded funding from the Royal Academy of Engineering and BG Technology to appoint a new Professor in Pipeline Technology. The post is due to start in Autumn 2000 and will be for an initial period of 5 years. Professor Neil Halliwell FR Eng, Dean of Engineering, said, "This post will enhance the growing collaboration between BG Technology and the University to their mutual benefit. We are extremely grateful to the Royal Academy of Engineering and BG Technology for their support in establishing this prestigious position." The new Professor will work closely with BG Technology to establish a University research group of international standing. The group will deliver forward-looking and innovative technology solutions for the international gas industry of tomorrow, and carry out leading edge research in pipeline technology.

Supplies Uncertain for Eastern Europe

The stability of gas supply has become an issue of increased importance in Europe of late. While Russia and the former Soviet states are embroiled in disagreements over gas prices, questions are being asked concerning the stability of several pipelines in Europe.




University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne

School of Marine Science & Technology

Prof. Phil Hopkins
Director, Centre for Pipeline Engineering


PEMEX – Mexican Oil Pipelines

PEMEX owns more than 26,000 miles of transportation pipelines and 12,500 miles of loading and collection pipelines, and the investment in refurbishing and maintaining those assets will amount to $326 million in 2005. PEMEX officials emphasized that 25 percent of the leaks and accidents that happen in the pipeline systems are associated with third-party mistakes, usually construction companies not related to PEMEX that work with heavy construction machinery and damage the pipelines. Of course, corrosion related to pipeline aging also plays an important role. The company expects to invest another $522 million from 2006 through 2008. Transporting oil by over-the-road trucking costs as much as $6 per barrel, while pipelines reduce the cost to 85 cents per barrel. But there are five key challenges to extending the use of pipelines in Mexico.



American Petroleum Institute


Pipelines Lead U.S. in Oil Transportation

Pipelines continue to transport the most oil according to the industry’s recently released annual report on shifts in petroleum transportation. Each year’s report compares the volumes of petroleum transported in the last 20 years by pipeline, water carries, motor vehicles and railroads. The 2006 report shows the shift between 1984 and 2004.

Measured in ton-miles, oil pipelines transported 66.44 percent of the total crude and petroleum products carried in domestic transportation compared to 2003’s report of 66.82.  Pipelines carried 75.9 percent of the 902.5 billion ton-miles of crude petroleum moved in 2004 compared to 2003’s 74.8 percent. Pipelines carried 59.8 percent of the total 528.4 billion ton-miles of light petroleum products such as gasoline, jet fuel, liquid petroleum gas, kerosene, heating and fuel oils.

“Pipeline’s continue to be among the most economical, safe and efficient form of transporting petroleum products in the U.S.,” said Ben Cooper, Executive Director of the Association of Oil Pipelines. “This year’s report confirms the industry’s commitment to being the number one transporter of oil and petroleum products in the country.”


Tokyo Gas – R&D Division

To supply gas to our customers, we have underground gas pipelines equivalent in length to the earth's circumference. The Pipeline Technology Center is constantly pursuing research and development with the aim of refining a pipeline network that can supply gas reliably and efficiently, for an energy environment that is safe and comfortable for our customers.



USA - PipelinersUnion 798 and Dr Liu – August 2003


Pipeline Capsule Update

Pipeline capsule transportation offers many advantages over conventional means

such as railroad, airplane, or truck. Pipeline capsules reduce air pollution, noise, accidents, and the number of trucks that clog the highways. They also offer more rapid delivery of goods and energy conservation, which will lesson our dependence on foreign oil and increase our economic development by creating jobs. It is our hope that Dr. Liu’s research will open new markets and job opportunities for pipeliners in the future. We also feel the need to see this through to the end, and hopefully one day, we will be able to say that Local 798 was instrumental in pioneering a whole new industry. The quicker this technology becomes accepted, the sooner U.A. members will have a chance to earn their living in a new industry.


Again, I would like to thank all of our members who donated their time to help build the first pipeline capsule center in the United States. If our members had not donated their labor, this project might have fallen through the cracks. Stakeholders for pipeline capsule development met in New York City on July 9, 2003. It is an honor to report to our membership that Dr. Henry Liu has asked me to serve as a committee member on his newly formed freight pipeline company. After successfully building the first pipeline capsule research center in Columbia, Missouri, Dr. Liu is in the process of commercializing his idea into mainstream

America. He received a grant from New York’s Energy Research and Development Department, which funds projects that offer environmental and economic benefits to the State of New York.


One of the attendees at the July meeting was Dr. Sanai Kosugi, the General Manager of Pipeline Engineering at Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd. in Tokyo, Japan. Dr. Kosugi was in charge of the developments of the pipeline capsules used in Japan, the oldest being a pipeline that transports limestone to a cement plant that has been in operation since 1983 with a highly reliable transportation record that is much safer than conventional transportation means. Other attendees included Joseph Littmann, Project Manager of Economic Development of the New York State Energy Research Development Authority (NYSERDA); Michelle S. Pak, Project Manager of Transportation of the New York City Economic Development Corporation; and Kailash Sharma, Professional Engineer and Chief of Division of Review and Construction Compliance at the Bureau of Water and Sewer Operations. In his presentation, Littmann indicated that the city is actively developing the Manhattan area following the destruction of September 11, 2001. The city of New York plans on building Manhattan back as a model city, displaying all the futuristic inventions of modern technology.


Other members comprising the board include Frank Ralbovsky, Project Manager of Transportation and Power Systems Research for the NYSERDA; Steven Brown, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Office of Policy and Planning; Richard Drake, Program Manager of Transportation and Power Systems Research and Development of the NYSERDA; and Troy Herman, Manager of Accu-Sort Systems, Inc. Accu-Sort is a leader in the world in bar codes and sorting technology. As you can see, with cooperation from many fronts, twenty-first century technologies, and extra care in design and operation, pipeline capsule technology has a bright future worldwide.

USA - Capsule system for a bank.


A multi-stage pressure/vacuum apparatus is disclosed for a bi-directional pneumatic delivery system or the like.

The present invention provides a simplified apparatus ideally suited for pressure and/or vacuum generation in a system such as a bi-directional pneumatic conveyor. Indeed, the present invention contemplates a bi-directional pneumatic conveyancesystem including the inventive multi-stage air pressure generator disclosed herein. The multi-stage air pressure apparatus according to the invention can be contained in a generally rectangular outer housing for relative ease in manufacturing and subsequent maintenance. The pressure generation apparatus is described as "multi-stage" because it generates maximum pressure in stages (two stages according to the preferred embodiment), and also maximum vacuum conditions in stages (three stages in the preferred embodiment).

The multi-stage pressure apparatus includes a housing with internal chambers and ports between a first turbine chamber that contains at least one turbine and a second turbine chamber than contains at least one other turbine. The turbines of each chamber can be activated independently of each other, at slightly different times. The chambers and their ports within the housing selectively are opened and closed by valve elements that respond to pressures created within the chambers by the turbines and in the preferred embodiments, that also respond to gravity. The valve elements include biased valves, unbiased valves and, in the preferred embodiment, particularly configured spool valves.


Study of Friction on Pipeline Capsules

Úplný záznam dokumentu


Bunce, J. A.


Friction factors and drag coefficients of pneumatic pipeline capsules


1. ed.


Crowthorne : Transport and road research laboratory, 1983


15 s., 17 s. obr. a grafů


Obsahuje bibliografii








K 23119

Přehled exemplářů - Objednávka výpůjčky




By 1990, the economic and political changes in the life of the country had led to a stop in construction of the new trunk pipelines. In late 1991, the USSR disappeared from the map of the world. Fifteen new states had distributed between themselves common property, including oil pipelines. The universal oil pipeline system was left only in Russia. In some of the countries only part of the trunk pipelines were left. Other countries were engaged in the Russian oil transit, which was accompanied by complete reorganization of the oil industry, Russia included. Glavtransneft was being reorganized into the Transneft joint-stock company. By that time, Transneft was operating 49.6 thousand km of oil trunk pipelines with diameters 400...1220 mm, 404 pump stations, 934 tankers with the total capacity 13.2 million m3. The operation of the oil pipeline system was implemented by 11 joint-stock companies of the oil trunk pipelines. From 1992, the company  rendered services related to the oil transportation in accordance with the tariffs established by the federal executive power structures. The introduction of tariffs had ensured steady operations in the changing economic conditions, whereas all oil producers enjoyed equal rights in their oil transportation along the trunk pipelines. However, the load of АК Transneft trunk pipelines accounted at the time for mere 45% of the planned load.

Year 1992 is believed to be the start of the new epoch in the new Russia’s pipeline transportation system.

The 20th century is over now. In the changing political and economic situation in the country, the system of AK Transneft oil trunk pipelines guarantees steady pumping of oil volumes as it is required by the Russian economics. 

A.M. Shammazov, B.N. Mastobajev, R.N. Bakhtizin (UGNTU), А.Е. Soshchenko (OJSC AK Transneft)

Truboprovodny transport nefti (Oil Pipelines), No. 2, 2001


Third International Specialized Fair – Kiev «Pipeline Transport — 2007»


Dear ladies and gentlemen!

STC «The E.O. Paton Electric Welding Institute» of the NAS of Ukraine, National Joint–Stock Company «Naftogas of Ukraine", joint with Ukrainian Assiciation for Valves Industry (APAU) and Association of Producers and Builders of Polymeric Pipelines, invites you to take part in the Third International Specialized Fair «Pipelie Transport — 2007», which will be held under support of the Ministry of Industrial Policy of Ukraine, National Academy of Sciences (NAS) of Ukraine, on April 16 — 19, 2007, in the exhibition center «KyivExpoPlaza» (2b Salyutna str., Kyiv, Ukraine).

The main goal of the fair is to demonstrate contemporary achievements in the field of building, protection, diagnostics and repair of pipeline systems, support to establishment and development of business contacts, widening of co–operation in scientific–technology sphere and industry, attraction of investments, development of innovation activities.

STC «The E.O. Paton Electric Welding Institute» of the NAS of Ukraine, National Joint–Stock Company «Naftogas of Ukraine", joint with Ukrainian Assiciation for Valves Industry (APAU) and Association of Producers and Builders of Polymeric Pipelines, invites you to take part in the Third International Specialized Fair «Pipelie Transport — 2007», which will be held under support of the Ministry of Industrial Policy of Ukraine, National Academy of Sciences (NAS) of Ukraine, on April 16 — 19, 2007, in the exhibition center «KyivExpoPlaza» (2b Salyutna str., Kyiv, Ukraine).

The main goal of the fair is to demonstrate contemporary achievements in the field of building, protection, diagnostics and repair of pipeline systems, support to establishment and development of business contacts, widening of co–operation in scientific–technology sphere and industry, attraction of investments, development of innovation activities.

«Pipeline Transport — 2006» fair have demonstrated valuable scientific–technology and productive potential of enterprises and organisations who take part in construction and maintenance of pipeline transport systems. the fair generated high interest from visitors. Here 62 companies participated from Ukraine, Poland, Italy, Germany. the last developments has been represented in the fields of design, building, maintenance and repair of pipeline transport systems of different purpose.

The fair has been attended by more than 10000 visitors. In the framework of the fair the 4th Scintific–practical seminar «Providion of Running Reliability of Pipeline Transport Systems» has been held under participation of leading specialists from Ukraine and Russian Federation. All this suggest that the fair is a place of meeting of specialists from all regions of Ukraine and foreign countries, connected with design, building, maintenance and repair of pipeline transport systems.

«Pipeline Transport» is the only in Ukraine specialized fair directed to building and manintenance of all elements of pipeline transport systems. It stimulates to focus attention of the specialists of this branch on the fair and increases effectiveness of exhibitor's participation.

Exposition of the «Pipeline Transport — 2007» fair will spread on an area of 2000 sq. m and will consist of segments corresponding to main directions of running reliability of pipeline systems transporting gas, oil, oil–chemistry products, water, heat.

Also, the fair will represent specialized exposition «Industrial Ecology and Labour Protection».

«Pipeline Transport» is the only in Ukraine specialized fair directed to building and manintenance of all elements of pipeline transport systems. It stimulates to focus attention of the specialists of this branch on the fair and increases effectiveness of exhibitor's participation.

Exposition of the «Pipeline Transport — 2007» fair will spread on an area of 2000 sq. m and will consist of segments corresponding to main directions of running reliability of pipeline systems transporting gas, oil, oil–chemistry products, water, heat.

Also, the fair will represent specialized exposition «Industrial Ecology and Labour Protection».

Important feature of the fair is organization of information events with participation of the leading specialists from Ukraine and Russian Federation.

Participation in the fair «Pileline Transport — 2007» will render a possibility for enterprises and organizations to demonstrate new materials, equipment, methods, technologies of building and safety maintenance of pipeline transport, to establish and develop business relations, to exchange contemporary scientific–technology information.

With best wishes,
Chairman of the Organization Commitee of the «Pipeline Transport — 2007» fair
Valery Proskudin

«Pipeline Transport — 2006» fair have demonstrated valuable scientific–technology and productive potential of enterprises and organisations who take part in construction and maintenance of pipeline transport systems. the fair generated high interest from visitors. Here 62 companies participated from Ukraine, Poland, Italy, Germany. the last developments has been represented


YOU can get additional information in STC «The E. O. Paton Electric Welding Institute»:

11 Bozhenko str., 03680 Kyiv Ukraine
Tel./fax: +380 (44) 200–8089, 287–1238





This class consists of firms mainly engaged in operating pipelines for the transportation of oil, gas, water or other materials on a contract or fee basis. In recent years, there has been movement into the industry as a result of the privatisation of gas pipelines and/or the establishment of third-party access regimes to gas pipelines. For example, prior to the sale of AlintaGas' pipeline in Western Australia its gas transmission business fell within the scope of its overall gas supply activities and hence was included in Class D3620, Gas Supply. After the sale, the pipeline was operated on a fee basis, and has therefore been included in the pipeline transport industry.

Segments -The major products and services covered in this market research report are: Gas pipelines Oil pipelines

Activities - The primary activities of companies in this industry are:  The primary activities of firms in this industry comprise:

Pipeline operation (for the transport of oil, gas, water or other materials on a contract or fee basis)



Pipeline transport studies and comparisons with road, rail and sea.

Pipeline transport is one of the less known transport modalities. One explanation for this ignorance is that its performances are literally hidden from view. Nevertheless pipeline systems are of great importance in the economy. The daily transport and distribution of gas and drinking water to households seems self-evident, but is only conceivable duo to a well-functioning, wide-extended pipeline network.

Aside from this dedicated market a main application of pipelines can be found in private company properties and in transport between companies within large industrial complexes. These transports are short-distance related and could be conceived as part of the production processes. The associated volumes, however, are sizable(1). Other large-scale networks of pipelines can be found in the Russian or Middle East oil and gas fields. These pipelines are used to transport crude oil deep-sea harbors or natural gas directly to the gas distribution centers.

For freight transport there have been proposed several concepts during the last decade. Especially in Japan different underground freight transport systems in which sophisticated automated transport techniques will be applied, have been under study, like the Dual Mode Truck system and L-Net (CTT, 1997a). These systems are focused on (inter)urban transport. In the United States proposals to develop underground systems have been introduced as well, such as the Subtrans-system (see figure 8.1). The system contains capsules on wheels being propelled by linear induction. The infrastructure consists of tunnels with a two meter diameter. The idea is that it could be used in particular for interurban freight distribution.

In the Netherlands comparable concepts are being elaborated, such as the Underground Logistic System for Amsterdam Airport (OLS-Schiphol) (CTT, 1997c) and Combi-Road for which underground construction is still an option too (CTT, 1997b). All concepts are still in a very conceptual stage and, except for Combi-Road, focused on transporting relative small units. They all need be to be elaborated furthermore.

In addition to these systems high-speed underground systems for long distance transport have been proposed as well (for instance TEAL in the United States and TSF in Belgium). Apart from validation of the technology these systems might have to cope with financial barriers, since huge investments are needed to construct underground infrastructure over long distances.


Electromagnetic drive  - USA

6.0 Conclusions

Economic studies have shown that a 60 cm pipe diameter is near the optimum scale for

applications in the phosphate industry. Tests carried out to date on the 275 meter long, 60 cm

diameter pipeline have demonstrated the basic feasibility of the design. The combined results

demonstrate that electromagnetic capsule pumps have the potential to significantly reduce the throughput limitations of blower driven capsule pipelines. Economic studies of applications in the phosphate industry indicate that the electromagnetic capsule pipeline systems can be competitive with truck and rail transport and with slurry pipelines.

While the initial tests have demonstrated the basic feasibility, a follow-on project will be required before the technology can be commercially available. One goal of such a project will be to demonstrate that the components can meet the lifetime requirements. A suitable follow-on project could be to replace truck traffic between two near-by processing plants, or to carry matrix from one of the mine drag lines to a processing plant.

Magplane Technology designs and fabricates pipeline transport systems using the linear synchronous motor technology developed for the Magplane system. Typical applications for pipeline transport range from priority mail packages to ore transport. A typical ore application would have an underground pair of 24 inch diameter pipes for outbound and returning capsules, and typically carry 10 millions tons per year over a distance of 30 miles.

Electromagnetic drives for pipeline systems are intended to replace pneumatic capsules. Pneumatic capsule pipelines have a long history, and there are several large scale systems in current use. Conventional pneumatic systems use external blowers to move the column of air together with the capsules in the pipe. Full- diameter valves are used to control the injection, removal and subsequent return of capsules. Various practical limits constrain the throughput of these systems and limit their cost effectiveness.

The use of electromagnetic drives can greatly improve on the constraints which limit throughput in pneumatic systems, and can result in cost effective systems able to compete with truck and rail transport. Underground pipe transport can also relieve the environmental impact of conventional transport, and result in faster delivery in overcrowded metropolitan regions.

Magplane's development of capsule pipeline systems was initiated by the desire of the Florida Phosphate Industry to find a cost effective way to reduce the environmental impact of conventional transportation of their very large quantities of material. That industry projects, for example, as many as 30 million tons per year of finished product flowing to the Port of Tampa from the mining areas some 30 miles out from the port. Trucks carry the bulk of current production, and place a burden on the already stretched feeder and highway infrastructure in the region. A 30 mile pipeline from the mining region to the port would be a potential solution, but would need to be sufficiently cost effective relative to more conventional transportation to result in a satisfactory return on capital. Economic studies have been promising and have resulted in a willingness of the phosphate industry to undertake a significant R&D program.

Priority mail package delivery can be anticipated to grow significantly in the future driven by e-commerce. The growth of e-commerce, in fact, may well overwhelm the conventional delivery infrastructure, particularly surrounding airports and urban centers. Underground capsule pipeline systems could link airports and distributed warehouse facilities throughout major metropolitan regions where consumers could conveniently pick up their purchases.


Pipeline transport –v- truck transport

Pipeline transport of corn stover delivered by truck from the field is evaluated against a range of truck transport costs. Corn stover transported by pipeline at 20% solids concentration (wet basis) or higher could directly enter an ethanol fermentation plant, and hence the investment in the pipeline inlet end processing facilities displaces comparable investment in the plant. At 20% solids, pipeline transport of corn stover costs less than trucking at capacities in excess of 1.4 M dry tonnes/yr when compared to a mid range of truck transport cost (excluding any credit for economies of scale achieved in the ethanol fermentation plant from larger scale due to multiple pipelines). Pipelining of corn stover gives the opportunity to conduct simultaneous transport and saccharification (STS). If current enzymes are used, this would require elevated temperature. Heating of the slurry for STS, which in a fermentation plant is achieved from waste heat, is a significant cost element (more than 5 cents/l of ethanol) if done at the pipeline inlet unless waste heat is available, for example from an electric power plant located adjacent to the pipeline inlet. Heat loss in a 1.26 m pipeline carrying 2 M dry tonnes/yr is about 5 °C at a distance of 400 km in typical prairie clay soils, and would not likely require insulation; smaller pipelines or different soil conditions might require insulation for STS. Saccharification in the pipeline would reduce the need for investment in the fermentation plant, saving about 0.2 cents/l of ethanol. Transport of corn stover in multiple pipelines offers the opportunity to develop a large ethanol fermentation plant, avoiding some of the diseconomies of scale that arise from smaller plants whose capacities are limited by issues of truck congestion.

Keywords: Cost; Biomass transportation; Pipeline transport; Truck transport; Corn stover; Simultaneous transportation and saccharification

GermanyPosch & Partners

Feasibility studies, planning and route selection, topographic survey, detailed design, environmental impact assessment studies, economic and financial analyses, hydraulic analyses, back up of R.O. W. acquisition, procurement procedures, construction supervision, digital as built documentation, preparation of tender specifications and TOR



Pipeline transport of bulk materials


Many processes of treatment, handling and transport of minerals, ores, raw materials, municipal or industrial wastes are based on so called "wet technologies". Pipelining offers full mechanisation and automation, low operational costs, environmental protection and it is a logical continuation of such technologies. The aim of the project is to determine critical and optimal operational velocities, proper slurry flow models, power consumption , particle size distribution and concentration from point of view of conveyance and additional treatment. The project is focused on investigation of flow behaviour, drag reduction by means of additives modifying physico-chemical bahaviour, amendment of particle size distribution and choice of proper carrying liquid to minimise power consumption, search for suitable pumping system, slurry exploitation without dewatering (water-coal fuel, enriched coal slurry) as well as self-solidified and self-sealing hydraulic filling and economic analysis.



Czech Republic

Pavel Vlasak3, Zdenek Chara3 and Vyacheslav Berman4


Institute of Hydrodynamics Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Czech



Institute of Hydromechanics National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Ukraine


The paper deals with pipeline transport of fossil fuels. A general analysis of different ways of pipeline transport of coal, heavy viscous crude oil and natural gas or its products, capsule pipeline transport of coal and solidified crude oil in LNG is introduced. An advantage of common carrier transport system, based on LNG and liquid hydrocarbons used as carrier fluid, is discussed.

Key words  Pipeline transport - fossil fuels - common carrier - LNG - crude oil  coal


OGA Transporte Neumatico








ZVVZ a.s. Low Pressure Transport



Low pressure transport

As an example of the low pressure transport we can name the ejector mixer. The transport distances are limited by the air pressure. Common outputs of the low pressure transport are 0.1 to 2 tons per hour, for distances of 30 to 40 metres.

Medium pressure transport

The medium pressure transport uses blowers with the air pressure up to 0.1 MPa as a source of air and special rotary feeders as blenders.

High pressure transport

The working elements of the high pressure transport are cell and screw feeders. The screw feeders also known as Fullers pumps are suitable for smaller construction heights, for the output of 80 tons per hour and distances up to 300 metres.Nevertheless they are not suitable for transport of abrasive materials. The cell feeders however find the best application and are used for transport of large volumes for long distances. The output according to size of the feeder can be 10 to 150 tons per hour, for the distance up to 1,000 metres.

Pneumatic channel transport

Pneumatic channel transport is convenient especially from the point of view of energy saving and a lower mechanical wear. This kind of transport can be used for outputs up to 400 tons per hour.The grade of the channel is 4 to 10 %. It can be used for shorter distances where a natural incline can be made use of.

The above mentioned systems of pneumatic transport can be extended with elements of mechanical transport and thus can meet the most demanding requirements of the customers.




Title: Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline



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Document summary:

Title: Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline

Author: Emerging Construction Technologies


Copyright: Unknown

Date: 25 July 2002

Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline

The Need

Capsule pipeline is a new pipeline technology that can transport freight such as coal and other minerals, solid waste including hazardous waste, grain and other agricultural products, mail and parcels, and many other products. The pipeline is underground and environmentally friendly, safe, reliable, energy efficient and weatherproof.

PCP, one of the capsule pipeline technology, is the transportation of freight by capsules (wheeled vehicles) moving in a pipeline. The motion of the capsules is driven by air or another gas moving through the pipe. PCP is similar to the pneumatic tube systems used at drive-in banks for transporting cash and documents between the customer and the teller, except that in the case of PCP the transportation distance is much longer, the capsules and the pipe are much larger, and the capsules have wheels.

The Technology

Pneumatic capsule pipeline (PCP) uses wheeled capsules (vehicles) to carry cargoes through a pipeline filled with air. The air is used to push the capsules through the pipeline. For a PCP of 3-foot diameter, each capsule can carry about two tons of cargo, traveling at 25 mph approximately. Because the capsules travel at 25 mph non-stop, they move at approximately the same daily average speed of trucks. High-value products, such as mail and parcel, can be transported by PCP.

Simple PCPs follow conventional fluid mechanics principles. Air is blown down and / or extracted from the pipeline, propelling the capsule along the pipe. The two ends of the pipe are always open, and the pressures on both ends are atmospheric. Air is blown through the pipe by a blower near the intake of the pipe.

Short PCPs involve a limited number of capsules in the system at any one time (normally just one train of several cars). This reflects the inefficiency of creating sufficient pressures to propel multiple capsules, and the difficulty in retrieving one capsule from the end of the pipeline while a second capsule was being propelled.

Modern large diameter PCP systems utilize through flow booster pumps, also known as jet pump injectors. These create the pressure differentials required to propel multiple capsules through a pipeline, while allowing both terminals at atmospheric pressure. This is done by placing a booster pump midway along the pipeline, and designing it in such a way that capsules can bypass the pump.

Larger diameter pneumatic systems were developed by the Victorians as an alternative to underground railways, carrying freight and passengers underground in cities.

During the 1960s and 1970s large diameter pneumatic systems were further developed as a potential technology for high speed ground transportation.

Since mid 1960s, there have been many researches and application trials in US, USSR, and UK. these countries attempted to find markets for their technologies for decades. Since 1980s, however, Japan has played a major role in this area, and showed the efforts in applying the technology to real cases. In most cases, horizonal systems were applied. There are two successful horizontal systems used in Japan, by the Sumitomo Metal Industries. One of the two systems is for transporting limestone to a cement plant, using 1m diameter circular pipe since 1983. Another is used for construction of a long tunnel for bullet trains, using square cross section made of precast concrete panels. See the attached photo for the square PCP.

Recently, one of the industry leaders, Tokyo-based Sumitomo Metals, has succeeded in applying PCP technology vertically in a soil removal project. In November 2001, Sumtomo implemented the first vertical application for a PCP, successfully removing soil from a sewage tunnel in Hiroshima, Japan under collaboration with Kajima Corporation. In this application, the railed vehicles travel in a chain of five along a horizontal tunnel track until they reach the 1 m diameter, 35m long vertical steel shaft. A capsule receives soil at a loading station and inserted into the pipeline one at a time. Once the capsule-equipped with four equally spaced plasitc wheels at each end of a central axis-is in the pipeline, a suction blower at the top of the pipe immediately launches it to the surface. The shaft can transport as many as 30 capsules an hour, each with a volume of 1m3. The low-pressure air current created by the suction blower can transport 51 Mg of material an hour with approximately 200kW of power.

FIGURE: A tunneling crew in Hiroshima, Japan, has successfully used a low-pressure pneumatic pipeline to extract capsules full of soil from a 35m deep shaft.
Diagram: Low-pressure pneumatic pipeline to extract capsules.

Recent proposed applications range from the distribution of household goods, mail or refuse, to inter-city or inter-continental freight movement. Movement of passengers might also be possible.

The Benefits

Use of PCP reduces the reliance on trucks for freight transportation. With fewer trucks on highways and streets, traffic congestion, accidents and air and noise pollution will all be lessened. Because PCP technology uses underground pipelines powered by electricity, it does not contribute to highway congestion, is very safe, and is non-polluting. Furthermore, PCP is far more reliable than trucks, uses less energy, is weather-proof, theft-proof and strike-proof. It also gets cargoes to destinations sooner than trucks. It can be used for transporting hundreds of cargoes that are ordinarily carried by trucks, such as mail, grain, vegetables, packaged products, bottled milk, boxes of cans, etc. Therefore, use of PCP in the future for intercity transportation of freight has vast implications for the nation and the world.


Capsule Pipeline Research Center (CPRC) was established at Univ. of Missouri - Columbia in 1991 to study and develop new pipeline technology for underground transportation of freight. The Center received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) as a State/Industry University Cooperative Research Center (State/IUCRC) for eight years, the longest period of funding for such centers.

Many companies in the US, Japan, and Canada are still attepting to not only find market for this technology, but also improve the technology itself to solve the problems limiting application.


Horizontal PCP

As PCP requires loading and unloading facilities, a longer distance, say a few km, is necessary for its economical application. As PCP's acquisition cost is higher than trucks because it needs pipeline construction as its guide way, a longer operational year, say a few years, is necessary for its economical application.

Vertical PCP

PCP's cost is higher than "Bucket-Wire" system if transport distance (depth) is less than 100 m The main barrier to long-distance PCP is that the current system is not cost effective as compared to truck and train, which use existing highways and rails, respectively. To be more competitive, further improvement of the contempory PCP systems is needed. This can be done by using electromagnetic pumps (linear induction motors) instead of blowers to power the system.

Points of Contact

Henry Liu, Ph.D., P.E.,
Capsule Pipeline Research Center, College of Engineering, University of Missouri-Columbia E2421 Engineering Bldg. East Columbia, Missouri 65211-2200
Phone: (573) 882-1810; 882-2779 Fax: (573) 884-4888;

Sanai Kosugi, Dr. Eng., General Manager
Sumitomo Metals Industry, Ltd., Pipeline Engineering Department Office Tower Y, Triton Square, 1-8-11, Harumi, Chu Tokyo 160-0003, Japan
Phone: +81 (3) 4416-6523 Fax: +81 (3) 4416-6781


CPRC Web site

Civil Engineering Magazine "Pneumatic Capsule Pipeline Removes Soil Vertically" Mar. 2002

Tim Howgego. Capsule Pipeline

Mining Technology Web site, and

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Copyright and Usage



Shipping Goes Down The Tubes

A system for moving goods through a high-speed pipeline is not so far-fetched, say some researchers.

Linda Rosencrance   Today’s Top Stories    or  Other Software Development Stories  


March 26, 2001 (Computerworld)


-- Imagine a national network of pipes, some as small as one foot in diameter and half a mile long, for transporting mail or machine parts between two buildings, and others as large as six feet in diameter and hundreds of miles long for intercity and interstate freight shipment. Sound far-fetched?

Not to Professor Henry Liu, director of the Capsule Pipeline Research Center (CPRC) at the University of Missouri in Columbia. Liu has spent more than 20 years researching pipeline technology systems in which close-fitting capsules carry freight through underground tubes between terminals.

As traffic congestion and pollution increase and fossil fuel supplies dry up, scientists are looking to innovative modes of transportation to transport freight more cost effectively and efficiently.

"This new pipeline technology can transport freight such as coal; solid waste, including hazardous waste; [and] agricultural products, as well as mail and parcels," Liu says.

Two Propulsion Systems

is investigating two capsule propulsion systems to move freight: pneumatic systems propelled by air pressure, which use air from booster fans or pumps to move the wheeled capsules through underground tubes, and a slower hydraulic system.

Hydraulic systems would push freight at 6 to 10 feet per second, while pneumatic systems would run at much higher speeds - 20 to 50 feet per second, Liu says.

Freight pipelines would employ a communication system that uses microwaves, cables and satellites operated automatically by a computer at the pipeline company's headquarters, he says.

William Vandersteel, an inventor in Alpine, N.J., is working to improve the technology used in the pneumatic pipeline system. In Vandersteel's tube pipeline, called TubeExpress, goods are carried in free-wheeling vehicles (capsules) that are pumped through the pipelines by electrical power. The CPRC is studying the use of an electromagnetic propulsion system called a linear induction motor, like those used in roller coasters and high-speed trains, to move freight through the pipeline, according to Liu.

Using this system, an electromagnetic charge in induction coils set at intervals within the pipeline would propel the capsules forward. Moving the capsules directly instead of by pumping air would allow the system to operate without interruption or distance limitation.

Daryl Oster in Crystal River Fla., has invented the Evacuated Tube Transport, which he claims could move goods from Miami to New York in 25 minutes and from New York to Hong Kong in three or four hours. Oster says his patented system, which works by eliminating friction, could be built aboveground as well as underground.

And while Oster's system - with its promise of speeds that surpass 2,000 miles per hour - may strain the imagination, there are already real freight pipelines either in existence or close to development.


March 26, 2001


In the Netherlands, the Dutch parliament is discussing a freight pipeline project that could link Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam to the flower market at Aalsmeer. And in Japan, an older pneumatic system, the Sumitomo Capsule Liner, carries limestone from a mine in Tochigi Prefecture to a plant 188 miles away, keeping heavy truck traffic off local roads.

But capsule pipelines aren't the only innovative transportation technology that could be used to move freight.

Francis Reynolds, an engineer and technical inventor in Bellevue, Wash., has developed what he calls a "dual-mode" system that would allow delivery vehicles to be used on streets as well as on "guideways."

Cargo-containing vehicles would travel on automatic guideways - which would use electricity to power the vehicles - built on a different level than the streets. The dual-mode vehicles would be battery electric or fuel cell electric for street use.

"Since we can't get rid of the [vehicles], let's make [vehicles] that aren't bad," Reynolds says. "They can travel in a normal manner on local streets, but most of the highway traffic will be done on guideways, where they can travel automatically at 60 mph in the city and 200 mph on the guideways between cities."

Reynolds says some dual-mode advocates propose supporting the vehicles on the guideways with pneumatic tires; others propose steel wheels on steel rails. But many advocates believe that maglev (magnetic levitation) guideways show the most promise, he says.

James Guadagno, a general partner at Paonia, Colo.-based Cimarron Technology Ltd., has developed the Integrated Transportation System, a dual-mode system in which vehicles would be propelled by linear synchronous motors, which would allow vehicles to travel automatically on a guideway at a constant speed.

A Key Partner

Though engineers and inventors are high on new transportation technologies to move freight, the U.S. government, which is a necessary partner in the development of new transportation technology, doesn't share their enthusiasm.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) says it isn't doing any research into any of these systems. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is, however, exploring the use of maglev vehicles to transport people, says Arnold Kupferman, manager of the FRA's maglev program.

According to Kupferman, it would take an act of Congress for any federal agency to shift its focus to alternative modes of transportation.

John Fontanella, an analyst at AMR Research Inc. in Boston, says that's not likely to happen. The reason the government isn't on board with these new technologies is that none of these systems is economically viable, he says.

But Liu has a different explanation for the lack of government involvement. "A more possible reason for DOT neglect in freight pipeline research is the strong lobbying efforts by the trucking industry and the railroad industry," he says. "They do not want competition from pipelines."




Pnuetrans Systems Limited - Toronto

We specialize in pneumatic capsular pipeline systems. These systems offer lower operating costs, lower maintenance cost and in many cases lower initial capital cost compared to other methods of transport. These systems are applied where long distance covered belt conveyors, some mid-haul truck transport routes and short haul train systems would be considered



A capsule carrying product is propelled through a pipeline using low pressure air. These pipelines can transport large quantities for long distances both horizontally and vertically at a very low operating cost and competitive capital cost.

Cylindrical wheeled trucks or capsules are automatically loaded with ore, concentrate, coal, aggregate, then propelled through a pipeline to be automatically unloaded at the receiving end.

Capsules are coupled together in trains, multiple trains run within the pipeline simultaneously so that the transport system is continuous.

Multiple products can be transported in the same and opposite directions simultaneously without mixing, for the same very low operating cost.







see simulation, horizontal implementation







These Pneumatic Capsular Pipelines are used to transport large quantities of product for long distances.

Typical applications would include transporting:




1. Ore, coal, aggregate from a mine to its mill. Returning tailings to the mine for backfill is possible, practical, and low cost.




2. Concentrates from the mill to a rail or ship load out or directly to the customer/user.Two or more products can be transported simultaneously without mixing.




3. Ore or coal can be transported from the working face in a mine, to the shaft, up the shaft to the surface and on to the mill without the product being transferred out of the capsule. There is a significant reduction in material handling and its cost. There is a reduction in skip hoist costs.
This system helps ventilate the mine by removing stale, humid, warm air when the system is hoisting.




4. Use where environmental issues prevent all other considerations, for
example, use where the terrain or climate makes other transportation
considerations difficult, impractical or expensive.







see simulation, vertical implementation






Pneumatic Capsular Pipelines must be designed by Pneutrans Systems Limited in order to determine their parameters and economics. User chosen parameters are usually not practical or economical.

1. Horizontal Distances


A. This includes inclines and declines.
B. These systems are most practical from 1.5 kilometers (1 mile) in length to 10’s of kilometers/miles in length. Theoretically,there is no limit to the length of these pipelines.


2. Vertical Distances


A. This includes steep inclines.
B. Very practical, can be made to travel at the speed of a skip hoist or faster. Distances are not a problem.


3. Annual System Throughput


Can range from 100,000 tonnes /tons to 12,000,000 tonnes/tons. The most practical range is 500,000 tonnes/tons to 5,000,000 tonnes/tons.


4. Capsule Speed


8 to 12 meters (25 to 40 feet per second). Can be made faster when the need arises.


5. Capsule Payload


Tonnes/tons depending on pipeline diameter. Capsules or cylindrical trucks are connected together in trains. Many trains are in transit simultaneously.


6. Pipeline Diameter


Anywhere from 406 mm (16 inches) to 1220 mm (48 inches). This is determined by the annual throughput, time available to transport and the geographical conditions.


7. Pipeline Bend Radius


Usually 50 times diameter minimum. It is important to keep the pipeline as straight as possible.


8. There are two basic type of systems:


A. Twin Line Systems: The loaded line runs from ‘A’ to ‘B’ with a separate return line running from ‘B’ to ‘A’. These are used for extremely heavy-duty applications. Although they may be practical for some applications, they are almost twice the capital and operating cost of Single Line Reversing System.
B. Single Line Reversing System: One pipe connects ‘A’ to ‘B’. Capsules are shuttled back and forth by a reversing airflow. These are used for most applications. Their capital and operating cost is slightly more then half a Twin Line system.


9. Point-to-point pipelines


Typically, systems are installed as point-to-point pipelines. Switching for multiple entrances and exits is possible, practical and economical.


10. Loading and unloading of trains


This is accomplished by known mining technology.














More papers relying on Henry Liu's work. It seems this field is his solo domain - apart from William Vandersteel of NJ who seems to have thought it all through and costed the system 10 years ago (TubeXpress).  There is nothing new under the sun (below).

Prof Liu also writes of a system to send Sea-Containers through pipelines. I am intrigued to see they have square pipes.

Invited presentation at Summer Meeting of U. S. Transportation Research Board (TRB)

LaJolla, California, July 10, 2006

  1. By using linear induction motor (LIM) capsule pumps, and by using capsule with steel wheels running on rails, a revolutionized new system of PCP is now available to transport cargoes of any size, including standard 40-ft containers, through conduits.

2006 Nova Award Nomination 20














1980 - 1992

TubeXpress, arguably, is destined to become the greatest advance in our transportation infrastructure since the railroad displaced the stagecoach


A major drawback of all air-pumped systems is the throughput capacity limitation imposed by the valves and airlocks needed to enable the capsules to bypass the air pumps. The airlocks required that the capsule(s) be brought to a momentary stop, thereby severely limiting the throughput of the system and this limitation has been the main reason why all pneumatic capsule pipeline systems built to date never achieved commercial success.


In 1980, William Vandersteel of Alpine, New Jersey, President of TubeXpress Systems, Inc. and its parent, Ampower Corporation, invented and patented (U.S. Patent No. 4,458,602, 1984) the embodiment of an entirely new concept for motivating a capsule pipeline system.  Rather than pumping air to propel the capsules, as had been the practice with every system built up to that time, Vandersteel proposed to impart thrust to the capsules directly, recognizing that the closely fitting capsules act like pistons in a long cylinder, and, by imparting thrust to the capsules directly, they will act like pistons pumping air, thereby motivating other capsules in the line. The Patent broadly covers any stationary means of imparting thrust to the capsules, except motivating the capsules by pumping the fluid medium (air).

Though various means of inducing thrust to the capsules could be considered, Vandersteel proposed the use of linear induction and/or linear synchronous propulsion, whereby an electromagnetic thrust is induced in each capsule as it passes over magnetic induction coils embedded in the base. Propelling the capsules directly avoids the restriction imposed by the airlocks and valves with the necessity of stopping the capsules in the airlocks, allowing the system to operate continuously without interruptions or distance limitation. Propelling the capsules directly, rather than by pumping the air, is a fundamental advance, which brings about at least a ten-fold increase in throughput capacity of a 2-meter ID capsule pipeline system. It also explains why, to date, air pumped capsule pipeline systems have never achieved commercial success. For the first time, it is now practical to consider capsule pipelines for the automated transportation of general commodity freight, in direct competition with surface transport. 

The first demonstration of this new technology was developed by Magplane Technology, Inc. of Bedford, MA ( It consists of a 700 ft, 24 inch diameter fiberglass pipeline, including a 200 ft long accelerator/decelerator section and a load/unloading station. The capsules are designed to each carry 600 lbs of phosphate rock and they can move back and forth through the 700 ft test section at up to 40 mph.  Capsules are fitted with an array of neodymium-iron boron permanent magnets, which interact with the linear synchronous motor mounted external to the tube to provide propulsion and braking forces. This is a proto-type for a 30-mile system to haul several million tons per year of phosphate rock from Florida mines to marine terminals for ocean shipment.


 Two basic approaches are possible.  Either you start with tunnels wherein the vehicles (capsules) have a close fit with minimal clearance in the tunnel, or you start with a cross-section with large clearance to accommodate aerodynamic constraints.  The system with closely fitting capsules is generally called a pneumatic capsule pipeline system, generically referred to as “tube freight”. The system operation is similar to a conveyer as it operates continuously, providing a constant maximum capacity. Actual the utilization depends on the cargo volume to be transported.



16th May 2007 – FoodTubes project.


May 08 – short overview St Andrews:


May 08 – short warming.ppt



Summary visual – 4 slides:


120,000 Homes – City Example – 41 slides:


EC Research Proposal:


Summary Targets:


Calculations, Logic and Outline:


Financial “What-If?” Project Plan:


Pipeline Symposium Texas:


State of the Art report:


Project Team:


Sponsoring Organizations:


Commercial Construction Consortium:


Home Page - Main Proposal:


Main Website: