Australian satellite data communication specialist Fastwave Communications recently launched an integrated service aimed at the pipeline management industry.

The new system, known as Fastview, offers monitoring and control of remote pipelines and associated infrastructure anywhere in the world in near real time using the new Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD) telemetry system. Fastview integrates advanced data acquisition and control hardware with the Iridium telemetry system and web based data delivery to enable seamless condition monitoring of remote assets and equipment.

Fastview said the new service is intended to provide a solution for clients who have widely dispersed assets and equipment in remote parts of the world, and wish to monitor them from their desktop. The technology is particularly suitable for pipelines, due to their large scale and the very remote, inhospitable terrain that they often traverse.

There are three basic components to the system:

1.Remote data gathering and control using a compact terminal that incorporates an advanced programmable logic controller (PLC), Iridium satellite terminal,GPS and battery.

2.Low cost, bi-directional Iridium short burst satellite telemetry, providing near real time data delivery from any location, and

3.Database management and secure, web based data delivery.

The need to efficiently monitor pipelines is growing due to environmental, security, cost and compliance factors. The monitoring and control of pipeline cathodic protection (CP) systems is an ideal application for the Fastview system. Fastview enables the monitoring and control of transformer rectifiers (TR’s) installed along pipeline CP systems.

Variables such as pipe potential measurements and TR output current can be remotely monitored and adjusted. Reporting intervals and parameters can be remotely selected and adjusted, and alarms delivered via e-mail or SMS when thresholds are exceeded. Because the remote terminal has GPS, synchronised current interruption is possible. Other communication options include GSM and short range radio.

Aside from monitoring CP systems, Fastview said its system can be used for monitoring and controlling remote wells, valves, meters, pumps, motors, timers, tank levels, vibration and strain gauges, sensors, automatic weather stations etc.