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3M™ Electronic Marker System

Color variety of oil industry midstream pipeline electronic markers

Part of 3M’s complete system for managing crucial buried assets, 3M™ Electronic iD Markers work in tandem with 3M™ Dynatel™ Locators to identify, mark and map your underground installations. Designed to eliminate guesswork, the color-coded 3M iD markers feature a full range of utility-specific frequencies: gas, telephone, electrical power, CATV, general purpose, drinking water and wastewater. The markers’ durable shells withstand water, chemicals and extreme temperatures, and self-leveling designs ensure maximum signal strength.

3M Electronic iD Markers use advanced radio frequency identification technology from locating equipment, such as 3M™ Dynatel Locators to help you quickly and precisely identify your buried assets – even in high-traffic areas or challenging terrain. This system’s pinpoint accuracy will help you manage your pipeline and network assets – and avoid costly mistakes.

3M™ Dynatel™ Locating and Marking System Family Brochure - (PDF 1.6 MB)

Cable and Pipe Locating Techniques Manual - Instructions/Manual (PDF 573.9 K)

An intelligent marker system

3M Dyanatel Electronic Marker

  • Full-range markers: for depths up to 8 ft. Ideal for use as a digging shield over sensitive underground facilities
  • Mid-range markers: for depths up to 5-6 ft. Self-leveling ball markers and spoke-stabilized mini-markers
  • Near-surface markers: for depths up to 3 ft. Easy installation in asphalt, concrete or rock without extensive digging or drilling
  • Programmable with specific information: facility type, utility owner, date of placement, GPS coordinates, exact depth
  • Designed to last for the life of the buried facility
  • Utility-specific colors and frequencies according to American Public Works Association (APWA) standards
  • Self-leveling designs keep the antenna properly oriented for maximum signal strength
  • Read/write capable using 3M™ Dynatel™ Locators

Pipeline under construction

In the United States alone, a vast network of pipeline operated by some 3,000 companies stretches for over 2.5 million miles. Construction companies and road grading crews in both rural and urban areas must be careful not to accidentally contact these lines during excavating and trenching work.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 33.4% of all serious pipeline incidents from 1992-2011 resulted from excavation damage to oil and gas transmission and distribution lines. Consequences include injuries and fatalities; emergency response costs; lost product; and damage to public, private and industry property.

In 2011, there were 39 significant incidents of excavation damage to oil and gas transmission and distribution lines, resulting in 2 fatalities, 16 injuries and a total of $14.8 million in damages. Most of these incidents were caused by third parties, but several were the result of operator or contractor error (for more information, see DOT PHMSA).

3M locator and marker products help avoid these costly accidents and make it easier for you to manage your underground facilities. Programmed 3M™ iD Markers increase both efficiency and safety; sophisticated 3M™ Dynatel™ Locators quickly and accurately identify buried assets...trace pipe paths...and provide accurate pipeline depth measurements.

3M RFID tag

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags, which are used today in everything from toll roads to pet collars, evolved from World War II advances in radar and radio frequency communication. Passive RFID tags, like 3M iD markers, consist of a data-storing microchip and an antenna.

The marker is activated when the locator emits its specific radio frequency. The marker’s antenna then harnesses the power from the signal’s electromagnetic field, using it to send radio waves back to the locator unit. The locator translates these frequencies to information about the installation, including precise depth.

Select 3M Dynatel locators can also write information back to the underground 3M iD marker, making it easy to keep your facility information up to date.


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