The transparent pipe: iTAC supplies MPC with new tracking and tracing system
From production through to loading and transport: Software supports pipe quality control on pipeline projects
Offshore pipelines are often found up to
2,000 meters deep in the sea. Faultless pipes and perfect logistical processes
are vital, as is the case on the current Nord Stream 2 pipeline project.
MÜLHEIM PIPECOATINGS GmbH (MPC) supplies pipes that meet the high demands of
transporting natural gas safely from Russia through the Baltic Seat to Europe. iTAC
Software AG is supporting this project with a new Material Traceability and
Quality Control System.
MÜLHEIM PIPECOATINGS GmbH (MPC) is part of the EUROPIPE
Group - a global player in the production of longitudinal and spiral
seam-welded large diameter pipes in almost every dimension imaginable - and is
the competence center for coating processes.
“The specifications for coating pipes are becoming
increasingly complex making constant product quality ever more important,”
explains Rainer Grabowski, Factory Manager at MPC. This is why the company
decided in the course of a tender to use a Material Traceability and Quality
Control System based on the iTAC.MES.Suite from iTAC Software AG.
This solution takes complete control of production and loading processes.
It records the whole lifecycle of a pipe and is informed about the release
status and storage areas as well as transport by truck from EUROPIPE to MPC.
Staff can access all the data at any time, for example via a handheld PDA.
“With a high quality product and uninterrupted quality
control we can rule out exorbitant consequential damages. Possible faults have
to be found during production or the testing process. This is guaranteed with
the Material Traceability & Quality
Control System. As a rule, a maximum of just 0.5% of the pipes need to be
recoated,” Mr Grabowski continues.
and quality control in every detail
Dirk Klingbeil, MPC’s Managing Director explains: “The
solution offers much more than a standard system. The uniqueness lies in the
numerous individual adaptations and programming based on the
Business-Rule-Engine which is an integral part of iTAC.MES.Suite.” He goes on
to say, “Sometimes the pipes go back and forth a number of times between MPC
and EUROPIPE and they may have to be shortened and taken to the bending plant.
This is just one of the daily yet complex demands.”
iTAC and MPC have been working closely together to
program various interfaces: for dispatch, transport/rail, MPC’s own shop-floor
developments and a BI (Business Intelligence) portal. iTAC.BI.Portal allows
documentation on a daily basis as well as final documentation for the customer.
For continuous transparency and process safety, EUROPIPE is always kept updated
about the status of the pipes. Documentation was docked onto the system with
MPC’s own programming.
In practice, the software delivers on its promise:
The system started in October 2016 when the Nord Stream 2 project began. There
were significantly fewer problems with the first kilometer of pipe than anticipated.
This is a great success for the launch of such a complex IT system. The solution
will be used by MPC for all other projects in the future.