All posts by MATCOR

Natural Gas Fueling US Steel Competitiveness

Cheap and abundant Marcellus Shale gas derived from US fracking technology helps to drive competitiveness for a wide range of industries in the United States. This is especially true for the US Steel industry, and MATCOR’s recent project in Western Pennsylvania in the rolling hills of the Monongahela Valley is a great example of this.

US Steel Irvin Plant

Nestled on a hilltop 250 feet above the valley is US Steel’s Mon Valley Works–Irvin Plant. This hot strip mill in the Pittsburgh West Mifflin suburbs first opened in 1938. The hilltop site required more than 4.4 million cubic yards of earth to be moved, more than any other project other than the Panama Canal. In May of 2019, US Steel announced plans to invest $1 billion dollars at the site to expand it and to build a cogeneration power facility expected to be operational by 2022.

MATCOR was selected by US Steel to install, commission and test an impressed current cathodic protection system to protect the critical coke oven gas (COG) product pipelines mixed at the West Mifflin COG facility. The coke oven gas is a mixture of commercial natural gas and recovered waste coke gas. This blending of natural gas with recovered gas reduces costs and improves US Steel’s energy efficiency. The pipeline, affectionately called the Green Monster, traverses the valley feeding various facilities. Mostly above grade, the pipeline goes below grade in numerous locations.

US Steel Cathodic Protection System Installation

MATCOR’s MMP 3605 mixed metal oxide based canister anodes were selected as the new cathodic protection system anodes to protect the buried piping. Fifteen anodes were installed in individual 20-foot depth augered holes and connected to a #2 HMWPE buried header cable requiring approximately 1500 linear feet of trenching. The project included site specific safety training, regular coordination with site personnel and site restoration (seed, straw and fertilizer) after completion of the installation.

The project was a tremendous success and MATCOR is proud to have been able to partner with US Steel for their buried pipe corrosion protection.


Have questions or need a quote for cathodic protection materials or services? Contact us at the link below. For immediate assistance, please call +1-215-348-2974.
Contact a Corrosion Expert

Transmission Line Monitoring Through Partnership with LineVision

MATCOR is pleased to announce that we have partnered with LineVision, a Massachusetts based technology company, to provide their innovative overhead transmission line monitoring technology to the pipeline industry as part of MATCOR’s comprehensive suite of AC Interference and Monitoring services.

Solar-powered remote transmission line monitoring solution from LineVision.

LineVision’s PACT® (Pipeline AC Threats) system is a patented, self-contained, solar powered utility power line remote monitoring solution that provides pipeline operators with critical information regarding the operation of high voltage transmission lines owned by the power utility company. These innovative power line sensors provide critical data to operators without relying on the power company to provide it.

The ability to independently monitor critical transmission line information can greatly reduce the time required for modeling and eliminate any need for guesswork or assumptions when utility data is not readily available from the power company. Information obtained from the power line sensor includes:
• HVAC current being transmitted
• Phase order information

For AC Interference Modeling efforts, we can temporarily install this overhead line monitoring solution along the right-of-way (ROW) in strategic locations. This allows us to collect representative data over a period of time to provide the necessary inputs for the AC modeling software.

The LineVision PACT transmission line monitoring equipment can also be incorporated into your AC mitigation system monitoring program to provide information on the actual HVAC line usage. This is especially helpful when understanding how the line’s power flow usage level varies—the PACT system provides alerts if the usage increases over time.

This information, combined with your AC Test station AC and DC current density data trends can help to provide a more accurate picture of your mitigation system’s compliance with the AC mitigation criteria as detailed in NACE SP 21424-2018. This standard requires demonstrating that your system is mitigating to the required criteria level on a time averaged basis, and that it accounts for variations that could impact mitigation. Monitoring the AC transmission power flow is one of those variables.


Have questions about the LineVision PACT technology, or need a quote for AC mitigation services? Contact us at the link below. For immediate assistance, please call +1-215-348-2974.
Contact a Corrosion Expert

And the winner is – RUSTY!

The Jolly Green Giant, the Pillsbury Doughboy, the Geico Gecko, Ronald McDonald, the Energizer Bunny… please all step aside and make room for the world’s newest, and soon to be famous, icon, RUSTY the MATCOR Chili Pepper spokesperson.

“My mission is to protect the world’s infrastructure from the evil scourge of corrosion.”

—RUSTY

RUSTY is not trying to sell vegetables, biscuits in a can, hamburgers or batteries. No, RUSTY’s mission is to protect the world’s infrastructure from the evil scourge of corrosion. We look forward to RUSTY’s corrosion adventures.

A big shout out to Ted Morris of Nustar Energy, a 38-year veteran of the pipeline industry who has spent the last 29 years in Corrosion Control. Ted Morris was the grand prize winner of our “Name MATCOR’s Icon Contest”. The contest garnered a tremendous number of very thoughtful entries, but RUSTY was an immediate favorite of the selection committee. Ted will be retiring in the near future, having served the industry well, and we at MATCOR dare say that RUSTY may prove to be one of his great legacies. Thanks Ted!

A very close second place in the naming contest goes to Fernando Villamizar Ariza of Ingacor Colombia, with his name entry of “Cowboy Rust”. Thank you Fernando!

There were many honorable mentions and we thank everyone for the effort and creativity.

Name the MATCOR Hot Sauce Character!

For the past several NACE Conferences, MATCOR has spiced up the lives of NACE Conference attendees by handing out our highly coveted Hot Sauce with a cheerful Chili Pepper character on the bottle.

So Much Hot Sauce!

This year’s cancelled NACE Conference has left us with a large inventory of Hot Sauce that we intended to hand out in Houston. On the bottle this year our Chili Pepper character dons a Texas sized cowboy hat and boot for the occasion.

This character has also been included in several recent NACE eNews ads and our marketing team feels that he/she needs a name!

So, we thought we would ask our newsletter recipients for suggestions. 

Send us a name suggestion and we’ll mail you a bottle of MATCOR Hot Sauce!

The first 50 people to respond with a name will be sent a free bottle of Hot Sauce. 

Plus a T-shirt for finalists!

The top 5 suggestions, as determined by our Marketing team, will also receive a “MATCOR Factory Safe” long sleeved T-shirt for their participation.

Please help us give our Chili Pepper character a fitting name!

Complete the form below to submit your idea!


Name the MATCOR Hot Sauce Character!

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Turnkey Project Includes Pipeline Recoating & CP Upgrade

Working with fellow BrandSafway company Industrial Specialists LLC, MATCOR successfully completed a turnkey pipeline recoating and cathodic protection upgrade project ahead of schedule and to the operator’s complete satisfaction.

pipeline recoating project
MATCOR & Industrial Specialists team up on a complex pipeline recoating project.

Earlier this year, MATCOR purchased two state of the art dual air/hydro vacuum excavators. We have put these units to work as we expand our capabilities to include pipeline recoating services.

“We recently completed a major project in Oklahoma for a midstream client that leveraged our ‘Big Air’ vacuum excavators. This complex project challenged our existing capabilities and allowed us to draw on the resources and capabilities of our parent company, BrandSafway, to provide a full service cathodic protection upgrade and pipeline recoating in multiple locations.”—Josh Johnston, MATCOR Director of Sales

Pipeline Recoating Added to Anode Bed and Test Station Installation

The project consisted of six (6) anode bed installations and seven (7) test station installations – standard CP work for MATCOR; however, at each of the test station locations, we were also tasked with coating removal and recoating of the approximately 20 ft of pipeline exposed at each location.

The coating removal was complicated by the presence of asbestos. Prior to 1980, asbestos was typically used in a felt wrapping around the pipe along with an asphaltic (tar) outer wrap.

Asbestos can still be found in the coating of hundreds of thousands of feet of buried pipeline installed prior to 1980. MATCOR’s crew received one week of asbestos removal training to be properly qualified to identify, remove and dispose of the coating containing asbestos.

MATCOR’s parent company, BrandSafway, has in its portfolio of businesses Industrial Specialists, LLC (IS), which is an extremely well-qualified industrial coatings services team with over 35 NACE trained and certified inspectors and over 1,700 painters and supervisors.

MATCOR was able to partner with the IS Tulsa, OK office to deliver the entire project using in-house BrandSafway resources, making us a one stop shop for this level of work. MATCOR’s CP construction crews performed the vacuum excavation and asbestos coating removal, and then the BrandSafway industrial services crew performed the blasting, inspection and recoating work. One big company with a wide range of industrial capabilities.

Project Completed Ahead of Schedule

The project was executed successfully, completed two weeks ahead of schedule and to the pipeline operator’s complete satisfaction. We even identified two areas where the pipeline was directly on top of rock and the owner asked that MATCOR install a layer of rock shield over the completed recoat areas. At the end of the project, the pipeline operator affirmed that they would be using MATCOR again for similar project work.


Have questions or need a quote for cathodic protection or pipeline recoating services? Contact us at the link below.

CONTACT A CORROSION EXPERT

Durammo Helps You Do More With Your Money.

MATCOR’s proprietary deep anode system is a cost-effective approach to installing deep anodes.

Recently a customer asked MATCOR to bid the installation of multiple deep anode systems, each consisting of 15 high silicon cast iron anodes to be installed in 350-ft. deep holes. MATCOR provided an alternate proposal based on our proprietary Durammo® system.

Durammo® Deep Anode System

2 Major Benefits of Durammo 

  1. It eliminates the need for a junction box
  2. It requires a lot less cable due to its being a continuous anode system with only two primary cables

Meaningful Cost Savings

When you are looking at 15 individual anodes with hundreds of feet of dual insulated HMWPE/Kynar® or Halar®  (pick your preferred fluorinated polymer – they are very similar in their chemical resistance and are both suitable for deep anode installations), the cabling costs are significant as is the cost of a suitably sized junction box. Multiply these savings over several sites and it can lead to a meaningful costs savings over the typical conventional anode installation.

9 Reasons DURAMMO® Beats Conventional Anode Systems »

Expand Your Scope of Work!

Our client took advantage of the cost savings for the Durammo and awarded MATCOR the installation work and used the cost savings to have MATCOR repair, replace and add additional test stations instead of paying for a lot of additional cable and junction boxes. The Durammo cost savings allowed the operator to expand the scope of work doing more with the monies budgeted on the project.

Talk to your MATCOR representative to see how the Durammo can allow you to get more done with your limited CP budget monies.


To get in touch with our team of experts for more information, to ask a question or get a quote, please click below. We will respond by phone or email within 24 hours. For immediate assistance, please call +1-215-348-2974.

Contact a Corrosion Expert

Trying to Complete 2020 CP Projects?

Can this year end any sooner?

Wait, I still have stuff that needs to be completed this year!

This is a sentiment that many of us feel. It’s been a crazy year the likes of which we have never seen before and hopefully we will not see again.

But before we turn the page on 2020, many of our clients have expressed to MATCOR that they still have projects that were supposed to be completed in 2020—budgeted projects that still need to be completed this year. Between the lockdowns and the uncertainty over oil prices, too many projects were delayed or slow to get started. Now that we are several weeks into the fourth quarter and the weather is starting to turn, the working daylight hours are winnowing, the holidays are approaching, and the demand for cathodic protection installations is quickly filling up the available capacity in the market place.  There are only so many hours left in this year.

MATCOR is here to help.

We are working as hard as we can to satisfy as many customers as possible with our remaining capacity, and we are also encouraging customers to consider getting an early start to their 2021 construction project schedule.

Typically, January and February are slow construction months. In part this is because of weather issues, but often it is a budget cycle issue – clients are still finalizing their budgets, project teams are just getting back from the holiday season, and bid packages are being developed to be issued in February or March for a lot of CP construction work.  We expect 2021 will be a very busy year as owners and operators catch up on work that was pushed out, could not be completed in 2020, and begin to comply with new PHMSA Mega Rule requirements.

Purchase Cathodic Protection Materials Now with Your 2020 Budget for Installation in 2021.

We encourage all customers to consider getting started early – MATCOR is available to work with you.  If you have 2020 budget money but are not able to get the work completed in 2020, consider purchasing the materials with your 2020 monies and completing the installations in early 2021.  MATCOR can work with you to procure and store the materials and to plan an early first quarter installation.

Contact your MATCOR representative at the link below to discuss options for work that has been delayed or that needs to be done quickly.  We will do our best to support you.


Contact a Corrosion Expert

What is The Best Anode For Low Temperature Seawater Applications?

A MATCOR customer recently inquired about mixed metal oxide (MMO) anodes for low temperature seawater environments amid a concern over the formation of chlorine hydrates.  

This article describes a special low temperature MMO anode formulation that addresses these concerns. MATCOR is currently working on two projects that will potentially benefit from this modified MMO anode.

What is the best anode for low temperature seawater applications?
What is the best anode for low temperature seawater applications?

What concerns are there over the use of MMO anodes in cold water environments?

As a general rule, MMO anodes perform exceptionally well in chlorinating environments such as seawater.  Almost all MATCOR anodes are manufactured using a standard MMO coating formulation that is designed to operate efficiently in a wide range of electrolytes and environments.

In low temperature seawater, however, there is the possibility that high localized concentrations of chlorine can be formed in conjunction with a significantly reduced pH environment. 

Chlorine hydrate is a chlorine molecule caged in 8 molecules of water.  The generation of chlorine hydrate is strongly related to localized mass transport limitations which are greater at lower temperatures. There is no direct impact of chlorine hydrates to the titanium anode substrate or the anode coating. However, the presence of significant amounts of chlorine hydrate may result in inhomogeneous current distribution due to the differences in the conductivity. This could impact both the effectiveness of the current distribution being applied to the cathodically protected structure, and, over the long term, the wear rate or life of the coating.

Localized factors have a significant effect on the conditions that result in chloride hydrate formation. In addition, the properties of the MMO coating can have an impact.

MATCOR’s standard MMO formulation is suitable for low temperature chlorinated environments.

A modified formulation provides the best anode for low temperature seawater applications

By modifying the formulation, we can lower the oxygen overpotential to promote greater oxygen generation and less chlorine. This modified formulation reduces the quantity of chlorine gas while favoring the generation of oxygen.

This “cold” MMO formulation in low temperatures can be expected to reduce chlorine and boost oxygen generation by as much as 15%.

The other factor that has a large influence is current density, as it is this current density that determines the quantities of both oxygen and chlorine gas that are evolved. Reducing current density reduces the quantity of chlorine gas being generated.

In summary, MATCOR’s standard MMO coating formulation is a broad-based formulation that works in a wide range of electrolytes.

For areas of significant concern due to a combination of low temperature electrolyte and high current density, a special low temperature formulation is available. This formula reduces chlorine generation in favor of oxygen, helping to reduce any concerns over low temperature and chlorine hydrate formation.


If you have questions, or would like information on MATCOR’s special MMO anodes for low temperature applications, please contact us at the link below.

Contact a Corrosion Expert

Horizontal Directional Drilling for a Middle East Tank Retrofit

In a recent Tanks & Terminals article, Ted Huck discusses a tank cathodic protection retrofit project in the Middle East utilizing horizontal directional drilling technology.

Existing tanks pose several challenges that must be considered when looking to install cathodic protection, since access directly below the tank is not readily available.

Originally constructed in 1995, the original design of this critical service ethylene storage tank included a cathodic protection system to protect the external tank bottom in contact with the ground. Over time, the system stopped providing enough current to meet NACE criteria for the control of corrosion. 

Discrete Anodes Along the Tank Perimeter Not Satisfactory

The first retrofit cathodic protection system consisted of installing discreet anodes around the perimeter of the tank. While relatively easy to install, this method of retrofit installation often struggles to drive current to the full tank bottom. The results were not satisfactory so another method was needed.

Linear Anodes Installed Using Horizontal Directional Drilling

MATCOR had proposed an alternate approach, successfully being performed in the US but not tried previously in the Middle East. It involves the installation of multiple strings of linear anodes directly below the tank using horizontal directional drilling (HDD) technology. By drilling under the tank, it is possible to install anodes spanning the entire length of the tank. This method also allows for a testing device to measure the effectiveness of the cathodic protection system.

Click below to read the full article regarding this tank retrofit cathodic protection system, installed successfully in December 2019.


If you have questions, or for information on MATCOR’s above ground storage tank cathodic protection solutions, please contact us at the link below.

Contact a Corrosion Expert

More New Equipment to Benefit You!

Vacuum excavation added to our wide range of cathodic protection construction services.

MATCOR continues to invest in new equipment to allow us to perform your projects in an efficient and safe manner with minimal downtime. MATCOR has seen an unprecedented investment in new equipment, having added multiple new drilling rigs to our fleet while rotating out our older models, purchased new water trucks, added MudPuppy mud cleaners and recyclers, and commissioned two new HDD rigs in the past three years.

But that is not all, MATCOR is very excited to roll out a new capability to our service line. We have purchased two state of the art Vacuum Excavators.

Vacuum excavation services now available.

These two new vacuum excavators are dual air and water units allowing MATCOR’s crew to operate efficiently in a wide range of environments. “Big Air” compressor capability provides 300 lbs. of cutting capability, enabling us to excavate in many areas without the need for water.

The excavated material is vacuumed up in a dry form with significantly less mess and environmental impact. This allows for the expeditious backfilling of the excavation with the same material that had been removed. It also eliminates the need to haul off any spoils or haul in fresh fill materials.

Our new excavators are dual capable units that also incorporate a hydro excavation capability. High pressure water is more aggressive and can cut through virtually any soil type including more compact, rocky and dense soil that may preclude the use of air. The hydro capability is also great for cleaning the pipeline once excavated to enable physical inspections and making test station or negative connections.

MATCOR is excited to be adding vacuum excavation to our in-house construction capabilities allowing us to provide a wide range of additional services to our customers.

If you have questions, or for information on MATCOR’s construction capabilities, please contact us at the link below.

Contact a Corrosion Expert

Cathodic Protection Systems | Cathodic Protection Design | alternatives to sacrificial anodes and galvanic anodes