CP Design Center

Current Output

Current output is controlled by three factors:

Anode current output is calculated using Ohm's Law:

V = IR
I = current in amperes
V = potential differential in volts
R = anode resistance in ohms

The voltage difference is the protected potential of -0.85 volts subtracted from the open circuit potential of the anode. For high potential anodes, the difference is -0.9 volts. For H-1 alloy, the difference is -0.55 volts.

Resistance to earth can be calculated by Dwight's Equation:

R = resistance in ohms
= soil resistivity in ohm-cm
L = anode length in feet
d = anode diameter in feet

Tefankjian, in his article "Application and Maintenance of Control Facilities" offers a simple process for determining anode current output with consideration of coating, potential, and multiple anode installation. The process involves calculation of anode current for a single high-potential anode installed 10' away from a bare pipeline using the formula:

im = current output in mA
P = soil resistivity in ohn-cm
f = size correction factor - Table 1
Y = potential correction factor - Table 2

Step 1: For a well-coated pipeline, the constant of 150,000 should be reduced 20% to 120,000.

Step 2: Select anode size correction factor from Table 1.

Anode Weight (pounds) Standard Anodes Factor (f)
3D3 (packaged) 0.53
5D3 (packaged) 0.60
9D3 (packaged) 0.71
17D3 (packaged) 1.00
20D2 (packaged) 1.60
32D3 (packaged) 1.06
48D5 (packaged) 1.09

Step 3: Select potential correction factor from Table 2.

P / S Magnesium
-0.70 1.14
-0.80 1.07
-0.85 1.00
-0.90 0.93
-1.00 0.79
-1.10 0.64
-1.20 0.50

Step 4: Calculate anode current output with formula.

Step 5: Adjust for multiple anode installation by application of adjustment factors in Table 3.

No. of
Anodes in
Parallel
ADJUSTING FACTORS
Anode Spacing in Feet
5' 10' 15' 20'
2 1.839 1.920 1.946 1.964
3 2.455 2.705 2.795 2.848
4 3.036 3.455 3.625 3.714
5 3.589 4.188 4.429 4.563
6 4.125 4.902 5.223 5.411
7 4.652 5.598 6.000 6.232
8 5.152 6.277 6.768 7.036
9 5.670 6.964 7.536 7.875
10 6.161 7.643 8.304 8.679

As Tefankjian states in his article, the above process should be used only as a guide to estimate current output.



Courtesy of CP Design Center by MESA Products, Inc.

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