OptaSense, the company that protects the world’s key infrastructures by turning fibre-optic cables into a listening device, has secured a key pipeline security contract in Iraq. The contract is to help provide protection to a new 180km pipeline corridor, owned and run by the State Company for Oil Project Iraq (SCOP).
OptaSense will be providing the technology to allow vital operational and security data to help operate, protect and secure the pipeline along both sides of a 60 meters wide pipeline corridor. When complete the pipeline corridor will be protected by over 20,000 virtual microphones making it one of the most monitored assets in the region. This means any activity in and around the pipeline corridor will be ‘heard’ whether these be footsteps, digging or vehicles. The OptaSense acoustic alert data will be used to inform and guide the correct response to maintain pipeline integrity.
The project, due to be completed in March 2013, will complement work already taking place in Oman, Qatar and elsewhere in Iraq. The project will be managed from OptaSense regional HQ in Dubai.
Magnus McEwen-King, MD for OptaSense said:
“This contract is a significant step for OptaSense in the Middle East and builds on our investment in a regional HQ in Dubai. OptaSense will, for the first time, be providing a secure corridor, between which multiple pipelines will be built. We already have a proven track record of providing pipeline security elsewhere in the Middle East and around the world, and we are pleased to be undertaking another major project in the region. This cutting edge technology will provide a cost-effective means of protecting vital Iraqi infrastructure.
“We are rapidly establishing ourselves in the Middle East, and working in Iraq is important for OptaSense and shows the growing economic confidence in the country as a whole.”
The success of OptaSense reflects the growing realisation that “Leak Prevention” is much more desirable to “Leak Detection” with OptaSense able to detect, classify, locate and alarm on the events that precede a pipeline leak. With oil theft and breaches of pipelines costing the industry billions of dollars in lost revenue every year, OptaSense has a cost effective means to help provide a leak prevention solution.