With ever expanding OHS&E requirements the need to provide purpose-built Pig Handling equipment has become an important consideration for both new installations and on existing pigging equipment facilities. Pig Trolleys and Pig Handling Equipment are designed to assist operations personnel in the safe loading, unloading, transportation and storage of Pipeline Pigs for both process operations and periodical pipeline inspection operations.
Pig Trolleys consist of a robust frame which holds the pig loading/unloading tray. Pipeline Pigs are placed on the loading/unloading tray and pushed into the Pig Launcher or from the Pig Receiver by hand or winch. The height of the pig loading/unloading tray is designed to align with the bore of the Pig Launcher/Receiver major barrel to facilitate a smooth transition during loading/unloading procedures. The Pig Trolley frame is also fitted with soft tyred wheels so it can be moved up to the the launcher or away from the receiver on a running rail system. The wheels can be locked in position in the running rail to prevent the trolley from moving during loading/unloading operations. Pig Handling Equipment such as Lifting Davits are installed to place pipeline pigs on the pig loading/unloading tray during loading or, lift the pig clear during unloading. Other handling equipment such as pig storage frames are employed for large diameter Pipeline Pigs.
Some of the factors which could influence the design of Pig Handling Equipment to be installed are:
- Employing a safe and effective means of handling Pipeline Pigs as they are loaded into Pig Launchers and unloaded from Pig Receivers
- Site-specific and Government legislated OHS&E requirements
- Type of Pig Launchers and Receivers installed i.e. Process or Intelligent
- Type of Pigs being utilised i.e. Mechanical Pigs, Intelligent Pigs, Foam Pigs etc.
- Size & Weight of the Pipeline Pigs being utilised
- Volatility of products being transported through the pipeline system
- The location of the Pig Launcher & Receiver
- Availability of services such as Lifting Davits, Mobile Cranes, Compressed Air, Electricity etc….
- Frequency of Pigging Operations
With many years of field proven experience HORIZON Industrial offers design and supply of Pig Trolleys and Pig Handling Equipment to suit site-specific requirements and conform to Australian and/or International Design Codes, Laws and Standards. A range of materials including Carbon Steel, Stainless Steel, Duplex Stainless Steel, Aluminium and other materials are available.
Typical Pig Handling Equipment components include:
- Pig Trolleys
- Lifting Davits
- Winches (Electric, Air or Hydraulic)
- Running Rails
- Height Adjusters
- Locking Systems
How do Pig Handling Trolleys work?
When loading a Pig in readiness for launching the Pig is placed on the Pig Handling Trolley tray and the Trolley is then wheeled into position in front of the open launcher chamber, positioned centrally and at the correct height then locked in position. The Pig is then pushed into the Pig Launcher chamber using a series of push rods connected to a saddle which is moved forward and backward via pulleys and a cable winch system. The Pig is pushed into the chamber of the launcher until it engages in the reducer. Once in position the handling trolley is disengaged, wheeled away and the launcher closure is secured in readiness for the pigging procedure.
When the Pig arrives at the other end of the pipeline a Pig Handling Trolley is deployed to pull the Pig out of the Pig Receiver. The Trolley is wheeled into position in front of the open receiver chamber, positioned centrally and at the correct height then locked in position. The end of the Pig is connected via a cable hook then pulled out of the Pig Receiver chamber and onto the Trolley tray using pulleys and a cable winch system.
The Pig Handling Trolleys are also used to move Pigs around the facility or to be placed onto transportation vehicles for delivery back to the start of the pipelines.
The Handling Trolleys can be provided in a range of materials and fitted with operating features such as a fixed height or adjustable height arrangement, electric winches, stainless steel cables and pulleys, ground-mounted running tracks and adjustable height outrigger stabilisers to prevent the trolley from unbalancing or to account for uneven ground.
Transportation Cradles mounted onto a purpose-built trailer with an electric Jib Crane enable safe handling and relocation of pigs to multiple-site operational facilities.
Some of the features of the trailer-mounted pig transportation system included electric jib crane with 300kgs lift capacity (powered by the towing vehicle battery), fully galvanized heavy-duty trailer construction, multi-diameter pig cradle, multiple tie points to secure the load, dual wheels for towing stability, outrigger stabilisers to prevent unbalancing or to account for uneven ground.