Glossary

Battery

Small field plants which remove natural gas, NGLs, water and sand from crude oil delivered by gathering systems from individual wells.

Bleeder

A valve or pipe through which bleeding is done.

Bitumen

Petroleum that exists in the semi-solid or solid phase in natural deposits; a thick, sticky form of crude that must be heated or diluted before it will flow into a well or through a pipeline.

Block valves

Gate valves found in the pipeline on either side of a pumping station or terminal, river crossing, or other points where the line may have to be blocked.

Burst strength

Hydraulic pressure required to burst a pipe or vessel of given thickness. Generally 2.5 to 4.0 times working pressure.

Centrifugal compressor

A compressor which exerts force on gas by a spinning motion. Natural gas is fed to the center of the “impeller” which is spinning at high speed and, partly from the centrifugal force of the spinning and partly from the action of the blades of the impeller, is hurled outward to the walls of the compressor chamber.

Centrifugal pump

A pump consisting of one or more impellers fixed on a rotating shaft. The liquid enters the impeller at the shaft and is impelled outward from the center by centrifugal force at high velocity into  the volute of the pump casing. This pump has the advantage of constant pressure.

CEPA

The Canadian Energy Pipeline Association.

Check valve

A device operated by gravity and pressure and used to restrict flow to one direction; installed to protect against surge pressure, hold product when pressure is released, and to fill tanks.

Common carrier

Any transportation system available for use by the public for transporting cargo.

Compressor

A machine used to boost natural gas pressure to move it through pipelines or other facilities. A compressor station is a permanent facility housing one or more compressors.

Crude oil

A naturally occurring liquid mixture of hydrocarbons; liquid petroleum. The liquid hydrocarbons may be mixed with natural gas, carbon dioxide, saltwater, sulphur compounds and sand. Most of these substances are separated from the liquid hydrocarbons at processing facilities near the producing field.

Delivery stations

Facilities where natural gas or crude oil are transferred from one party to another.

Fabricated assemblies

Pipeline components such as valves, pumps and pipe fittings.

Fittings

The small pipes and valves that are used to make up a system of piping.

Flange

A projecting rim, edge, lip, or rib to provide strength for guiding or for attachment to another object, as a plate to close a pipe opening or other orifice.

Gathering Lines, Systems

The piping networks installed in oil or gas fields to transport petroleum to a processing plant or bulk shipping point.

Gathering system

A system of pipelines laid to bring gas or oil from wells to a central point.

Heavy oil

Oil having an API gravity less than 22.3º. Includes some oil that will flow, however slowly, but most heavy oil requires heat or dilution to flow to a well or through a pipeline.

Hydrocarbons

A large class of liquid, solid or gaseous organic compounds, consisting of only carbon and hydrogen, which are the basis of almost all petroleum products.

Line pressure

Pressure generated by station pumps and transmitted to the line for purpose of moving product. In general, it is highest when product first enters the line and gradually decreases as the product moves through the line.

Liquefied natural gas (LNG)

Supercooled natural gas that is maintained as a liquid at or below -160°C; LNG occupies 1/600th of its original volume and is therefore easier to transport if pipelines cannot be used.

Metering stations

Measure the quantity of natural gas or liquids flowing through a pipeline.

Natural gas

Gaseous petroleum consisting primarily of methane with lesser amounts of (in order of abundance) ethane, propane, butane and pentane, and heavier hydrocarbons as well as non-energy components such as nitrogen, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulphide and water.

Natural gas liquids (NGLs)

Liquids obtained during natural gas production and processing; they include ethane, propane butane and condensate.

Petroleum products

Petroleum products are the end result of the refining process. They include fuels such as gasoline, aviation fuel, diesel and heating oil; products such as solvents and lubricants; and raw materials for manufacturing petrochemicals.

Pig

A cylindrical device that is inserted into a pipeline to clean the pipeline wall or monitor the internal condition of the pipeline. Also called a smart pig.

Pipeline

All parts of the physical facility through which, crude oil, natural gas or other petroleum derivatives are moved in transportation, including pipe, valves, and other equipment attached to the pipe, compressor units, metering stations, regulator stations, delivery stations, holders, and fabricated assemblies.

Pipe locator

Device used for locating underground pipe, employing the same principle as mine detector.

Primary energy

Primary energy is energy that is produced first, versus secondary energy which is produced by consuming primary energy. Examples of primary energy include heat or motive power produced from the combustion of coal, crude oil and natural gas; and electricity produced from nuclear, wind or hydropower.  Examples of secondary energy include thermal electricity and motive power from gasoline.

Processing Plant

A facility designed to separate substances or make new substances through chemical reactions, procedures or physical actions.

Products line

A pipeline used for the shipment of refined products.

Products pipeline system

A pipeline with pumping stations, delivery pipeline terminals, tankage and other apparatus used for the transportation of products opposed to crude oil.

Pump Stations

Facilities placed along the route of a pipeline to keep oil or gas moving along with pressure or suction.

Pup

A short length of pipe.

Reciprocating pump

A pump that relies upon the action of a piston or plunger moving within a cylinder for positive displacement of a given volume of liquid on each discharge stroke.

Relief valve

A valve that will open automatically when pressure gets too high.

Regulator stations

Facilities along a pipeline where the flow rate can be adjusted.

Right-of-way

Either the right to pass over someone else’s property (plural: rights-of-way) or the actual property subject to a right-of-way (plural: right-of-ways).

Synthetic crude oil

A mixture of hydrocarbons, similar to crude oil, derived by upgrading bitumen from oilsands.

Traditional Territory

A geographical area used for traditional purposes such as hunting, fishing, trapping and berry picking by an Aboriginal group. Traditional territories can also include places of archeological or spiritual significance.

Transmission or trunk line

A major, long-distance pipeline, usually of large diameter.