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A leak of hot, high pressure steam was found on a 2” bonnet valve. This leak was continuously worsening and tightening the bolts did not stop the leak, so the need of an injectable Engineered Pressure Enclosure (EPE) became essential. To build this device, it is required to take field measurements of the affected area. However, manual measurement was not possible because the hot steam and pipes were a safety hazard.

Active hot, high pressure steam leak in a field site.

Risks Involved

The risk assessment lead to two major impacts:

  1. Safety: moderate risk of injury due to contact with the steam; or in winter, the possibility of freezing and falling.
  2. Production: moderate risk of losing over 1M BBLS of product, as approximately 5 days of production would have been lost if the line had to shut down to fix it.


Since the field measurements were not possible to take manually, Laser Scanning of the existing equipment was the best solution to replicate it.

Process: An EngRx engineer went to the field and scanned the equipment and surrounding areas; these images are rough point clouds that were later post-processed and converted into a STEP file. Finally, the engineer designed the EPE to be manufactured to stop the leak.

Duration: the following tables show the active working hours for each step until the design of the EPE, for both traditional and scanning methods. These tables do not include manufacturing time of the EPE.

Activity Hours
Equipment Preparation 8
Field Measurements: Manual 8
Field Dimensions 3D Design 12
Design Of The EPE 18
Activity Hours
Equipment Preparation 2
Field Measurements: Scanning 3.5
Field Dimensions 3D Design 6
Design Of The EPE 18

Advantage of using Laser Scanning: the most important one is that we could obtain a highly accurate model of the existing equipment, in an much easier, safer, and faster way than doing manual measurements and 2D sketches.

Step Conversion

EPE Design


Laser Scanning reduces in approximately 35% the time spent in the process of designing injectable EPEs compared to the traditional method. This is a great advantage for industries particularly when it represents money saving solution, while keeping safety as a priority. The major risks were mitigated and the solution provided to the client allowed them to stop the leak without the need of interrupting process operations.

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