Case Study

SGN identifies initial pipeline routing options in 1 week, with Optioneer™

SGN wanted to ensure the highest quality of analysis to evaluate multiple pipeline scenarios in sufficient detail with limited resources and time. Optioneer’s AI-powered route engine returned detailed route options in hours. SGN shortlisted preferred routes that outperformed alternatives on environmental impact.

Download case study
20 million

detailed pipeline route options assessed

1 week

time to initial options identified

<4 hours

iteration cycle for new scenarios

Introduction

SGN is a British gas distribution company. It manages the natural and green gas distribution networks in Scotland and in the south of England.

As part of its ‘Aberdeen Vision’ programme, SGN is currently developing a new pipeline to transport hydrogen gas from St Fergus to the Aberdeen area, with a future extension towards the Scottish Central Belt.

This requires a thorough evaluation of all possible pipeline routes. With ever more complex criteria to consider for new linear infrastructure, SGN needed a new solution that could simultaneously accelerate the process and increase the breadth and depth of route analysis.

The challenge of exploring all possible route scenarios, before using Optioneer

Faced with strict timelines and finite resources, traditional approaches to planning and development of linear projects limit both the number of route scenarios that can be assessed and the depth of analysis that can be undertaken.

That makes it difficult to undertake a robust route selection process where all possible options have been identified and analysed in enough detail, in support of planning applications. This is necessary and critical to understand and outline the potential impact on protected areas, local communities and individuals, and ultimately making a case for preferred route options.

SGN

How SGN used Optioneer

Working together with leading engineering company Wood, Continuum Industries deployed Optioneer to help the project team study over 20 million potential route options and assess each of them against hundreds of detailed environmental, engineering and cost criteria.

SGN’s project team was able to incorporate all feedback from external stakeholders and internal disciplines right from the beginning with configurable rules for Optioneer to follow when analysing and identifying prospective route options, such as avoiding population centres and protected sites.

Optioneer returned an optimised shortlist of route scenarios within hours aligned to the most relevant and critical criteria set by the project team. The quality of results meant that follow up site visits confirmed the feasibility of the preferred route with only minimal rework needed.

“Using Optioneer on the Aberdeen Vision hydrogen pipeline gave us the confidence early on that all possible alternative routes were assessed against environmental, social, engineering and cost criteria and that we were putting the best options forward. When the team got out on site, we found that the route required much fewer modifications than we would have normally expected”
Phil Bradwell
Energy Futures Manager

The result

Optioneer helped SGN build confidence in the identified corridors by assessing a total of over 20 million potential route options.

The team at Wood and SGN were able to minimise environmental impact through an in-depth understanding of trade-offs between environmental impact and cost.

They identified initial corridor options faster and were able to focus effort on the most challenging locations including strategic river crossings.

They achieved a feasible and economical shortlist of route options with minimal re-work as verified through site visits.

20 million

detailed pipeline route options assessed

1 week

time to initial options identified

<4 hours

iteration cycle for new scenarios

Discuss your project

Find out how we help energy companies to accelerate their infrastructure programmes.

Discuss your project