To ensure a sound management of the elements of main gas pipeline electrochemical protection, a mathematical model was formalized that optimizes the performance parameters of cathodic protection stations on the criterion of minimum power consumption. It is shown that the model is classified as a mixed-variable optimization problem. Constant input data of the performance parameter optimization problem for cathodic protection stations is determined by reference and regulatory documents, whereas variable one is determined by the current design of main gas pipeline and electrochemical protection system. An algorithm is proposed to find an efficient solution of the formalized optimization problem, based on stepwise generation of management options for the station system and solving particular problems of determining output currents of the cathodic protection. To produce an efficient solution for determination of output currents, it is proposed to use the particle swarm method as a multi-agent algorithm of stochastic optimization. The method is overviewed with regard to the problem addressed, and it is proposed to use the island mode of calculation. It is shown that using this mode in the particle swarm method considerably improves the chances of getting the efficient solution and provides parallel processing or distribution in solving the determination of output currents, without complicating the algorithm significantly. The formalized problem can be solved both at the design stage and during the operation of the electrochemical protection system of main gas pipeline. For decision-making on re-design of electrochemical protection system, a procedure is developed for application of proposed mathematical model and algorithms for performance parameter values optimization of main gas pipeline cathodic protection stations during their operation.
Keywords: ELECTROCHEMICAL PROTECTION, CATHODIC PROTECTION, MATHEMATICAL MODELING, OPTIMIZATION, CATHODIC PROTECTION STATION.