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A pipeline without a rush job: the new oil pump station started working in Priamurye

Date of publication: 29 December 2017 Printable version

Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean is accomplishing construction

One of the most large-scale investment projects of the last decade was accomplished in the Far East. Within two years the second stage of Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline will reach design capacity. The oil transportation system delivery capacity will reach 50 million tons of natural resources per year. That’s why we need to build stations for oil commodity flow extension. One of such facilities was commissioned on the territory of Arkhara district of Amur Region.

Where your country tells you to go

A life of an oil pipeline worker is similar to one of a military man. Timur and Marina Iumachikovs came to Amur Region from Tumen one year and a half ago. They took their children, packed the bags and made a traditional uneasy decision for the umpteenth time. She is the mother of four children, he is household head and the head of the new PS-29 oil pump station. Their moving geography is the geography of Russian oil pipelines. Arkhara oil pump station is the sixth one in Timur’s career. The lifestyle of “Where your country tells you to go” is like a habit. PS-29 took the count of the first tons of oil on 20 December, and he remembers the time it was under construction starting with the foundation.

‘Of course we felt nervous’, Timur shares his feelings. ‘It’s a totally new and unknown place for us. When I came to Arkhara for the first time I was intentionally walking around the streets and talking to people. People living in Amur Region are very friendly, there are several general education schools, music school, sports facility. There are all opportunities for bringing up children, so we should roll sleeves up ad work.

The elder daughter of Iumachikovs is a teacher-to-be, she is studying at the University, the youngest son in one and a half years old. Almost all children have different places of birth in their documents. However today the large family have a long-awaited feeling of stability. The construction of ESPO (Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean) is about to be accomplished, and the family was provided with a large apartment in a new house. It’s a great opportunity to pause and realize that the main place in life has been found.

Iumachikovs’ children have different places of birth but they found their home in Arkhara.

‘If my husband has such an important job, what else can we do? Of course we will follow him to the ends of the earth.’ Marina is saying with laughter. ‘There’s no point for us to go somewhere else now. The apartment is nice and warm. Now we want to live a calm and quiet life, and Timur wants to have normal working conditions without a rush job. While PS was under construction and house was in the process of being build we actually didn’t see anything. There were some more important things to think about. Of course, we can’t plan too far ahead, but it seems to me that we will stay in Arkhara for a long time.’ 

A house for sixteen apartments for PS-29 workers is a 17th house in the area of responsibility of Belogorsk Regional Oil Pipeline Directorate of Transneft Far East, LLC. Among the new settlers there aren’t only workers who came from other regions. Comfortable rent-free apartments are also traditionally provided to local specialists that have the need of housing conditions improvement. It’s an important factor provided that nine out of ten workers of such enterprises are people living in Amur Region. Anyway, nobody divides people into “us” and “them”.

‘Now all of you are the citizens of Arkhara district and Arkhara village,’ regional administrator Dmitry Lukianchuk noted during the house opening ceremony.  

Based on one button principle

Municipal Administrations and Regional Authorities’ interest in developing oil transportation infrastructure is quite logical. Only PS-29 provided the district with hundreds of working places.

The oil pump station in Arkhara district became the ninth one in the second stage system of Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline. Its purpose is to maintain pressure on the section between PS-27 (Ekaterinoslavka village) and PS-30 (Obluchye in JAR (Jewish Autonomous Region). Besides, in December 2017 we started using drag reducing agents, special solutions that reduces oil friction inside the pipe. Due to such measures the oil pipeline capacity will rise from 36 million tons to 38 million tons per year.

Commissioning of PS-29, its shutdown and operating modes changing are based on one button principle. The brain of PS-29 is the Control Center. Inside of it there are fat servers and several screens. Station operator on duty commissioned the new facility ESPO-2 quietly and matter-of-factly, using the computer mouse.

‘Microprocessor automatic equipment provides the opportunity to remotely control the trunk oil pipeline operating conditions, including seismic activity. In case of considerable shocks of earthquake or other emergency situations the automatic equipment can stop the oil transportation on its own,’ the operator Anatoly Ziablov shared.

‘There are four pump units for pipeline pressure maintenance. The capacity of each is 5,145 cubic meters per hour. It’s one of them that is working now, which is set by specially calculated oil pumping modes. Only three pump units can work at one time, one unit is always kept standby. The switch among units will be conducted without process breakdown if needed. That means that oil transportation will be conducted without interruption under any conditions,’ Anton Shenderov, Chief Engineer of Belogorsk RPD noted.

Chloride and sludge free

Comprehensive security is another characteristic feature of oil pump station. This both includes people’s lives and health and ecology. Moreover the responsibility for environmental protection is guaranteed at the highest governmental level. Waste treatment facilities of PS-29 were put up in the framework of the trilateral agreement between Minprirody of the Russian Federation, Rosprirodnadzor and Transneft.

‘The quality of domestic waste water after purification conforms the requirements of the environmental laws. They don’t pose threats to fishery water bodies,’ the head of the Directorate of Rosprirodnadzor for Amur Region, Viacheslav Goriachev pointed out. ‘In Priamurye there are 52 wastewater biotreatment stations. This facility is one of the most innovative due to the performance level and equipage. We have the most up-to-date equipment here.’

50 million tons per year is a designed capacity of ESPO-2

24 million tons Kozmino Port (export oil supplies)

6 mln tons – Khabarovsk Refinery

8 mln tons – Komsomolsk-on-Amur Refinery

12 mln tons – Far East Petrochemical Company (the city of Nakhodka)

As the Head of the Environmental Safety and Rational Nature Management Section of Transneft Far East, LLC, Leonid Truboltsev noted, waste treatment facilities of PS-29 also work in automatic mode. At the same time, there are 9 levels of water pigging provided. Due to this multi-level procedure, everything is being removed: from mud, sand, sludge to bacteria. Waste process water goes through the system of quartz and carbon filters. The ultraviolet lamps are used at the closing stage.

‘Ultraviolet is the most up-to-date, ecologically friendly means of getting rid of microorganisms. It allows to avoid using chloride,’ Leonid Anatolevich adds.

PS-29 is also equipped with a fire-extinguishing system, which can be activated automatically or manually.

‘The system is made in a way that the risk of fire is very unlikely. Nevertheless, we have weekly training and check the equipment regularly,’ Evgeny Kramarenko, the Head of the Fire-Safety Division says.

A special highlight is a unique fire-fighter truck. The tank is designed specially for being used at oil transportation system facilities. The vehicle is maximally adapted for working in the conditions of low temperatures. The increased capacity pump allows to supply the fire extinguishing mixture at the speed of 70 liters per second.


Roman Kovalev, Director General of Transneft Far East, LLC:

PS-29 is the first station that we have built in the framework of the second stage of Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline delivery capacity expansion. By the beginning of 2020 similar facilities are planned to be put up in Tygdy district of Magdagachi region (PS-23), Seryshevo district center (PS-26), Smidovichi village of Jewish Autonomous Region (PS-32). Also a large-scale revamping of PS-27 is planned in Ekaterinoslavka district center. There will be the construction of fuel storage tanks with the volume of 100 thousand cubic meters. Moreover, the modernization of existing PS-34 in Khabarovsk Region and PS-41 in Primorye. All of that will help to increase the delivery capacity of oil pipeline to 50 million tons of oil per year. Tax deductions to regional budget will increase. Only after commissioning of PS-29 they will increase by 100 million rubles per year.


77.6 million rubles – maintenance and arrangement of classrooms

35 million rubles – Amur multifunctional center of professional skills facility improvement

30 million rubles – Construction of the new building for nursing school in Ekaterinoslavka village

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