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Salt Lake CC, Math 1210-003, Fall 2015

Pipeline Project

The U.S. Interior Secretary recently approved drilling of natural gas wells near Vernal, Utah.
Your company has begun drilling and established a high-producing well on BLM ground. They
now need to build a pipeline to get the natural gas to their refinery.
While running the line directly to the refinery will be the least amount of pipe and shortest
distance, it would require running the line across private ground and paying a right-of-way fee.
There is a mountain directly east of the well that must be drilled through in order to run the
pipeline due east. Your company can build the pipeline around the private ground by going 9
miles directly west and then 14 miles south and finally 38 miles east to the refinery (see figure
below). Cost for materials, labor and fees to run the pipeline across BLM ground is $475,000
per mile.
Cost of drilling through the existing mountain would be a one-time cost of $4,600,000 on top of
the normal costs ($475,000 per mile) of the pipeline itself. Also the BLM will require an
environmental impact study before allowing you to drill through the mountain. Cost for the study
is estimated to be $500,000 and will delay the project by 6 months costing the company another
$115,000 per month.
For any pipeline run across private ground, your company incurs an additional $350,000 per
mile cost for right-of-way fees.
Your company has asked you to do the following:
a) Determine the cost of running the pipeline strictly on BLM ground with two different
cases:
i)
One running west, south and then east to the refinery.
ii)
One heading east through the mountain and then south to the refinery.
b) Determine the cost of running the pipeline:
i)
The shortest distance across the private ground to the refinery.
ii)
Straight south across the private ground, then straight east to the refinery.
c) Determine the cost function for the pipeline for the configuration involving running from
the well across the private ground at some angle and intersecting the BLM ground to the
south and then running east to the refinery. Use this function to find the optimal way to
run the pipeline to minimize cost. Determine the length of pipe that runs across private
land and how far from the refinery it starts running on BLM land. Determine the angle at
which your optimal path leaves the well. Clearly show all work including drawing the
pipeline on the figure below. Make it very clear how you use your knowledge of calculus
to determine the optimal placement of the pipeline.

d) Include a computer generated graph of the optimal cost function, C(x), for this pipeline

for any configuration involving crossing some private ground as well as some BLM
ground. Make sure to use the correct domain of the function to scale your axes
appropriately and to label the minimum point.

BLM Ground

14 miles

BLM Ground

9 miles

Private Ground

38 miles, BLM Ground


Write up a report of your finding to submit to your companys CEO. This report should include
all steps for any math used to make determinations asked for above as well as statements as to
the costs to be incurred by each scenario. Include any appropriate figures to make each
scenario clear. Label the scenarios as they are labeled above.
Expectations:

All of the mathematical steps will be shown and will be correct


All equations and formulas will be created using an equation editor
Use exact values, rounding costs to the nearest cent only after the final calculation
Each pipeline scenario will be clearly labeled on a computer generated diagram
showing the path that is being considered
Any variables you use will be clearly defined and shown in your diagrams
The cost function graph will be accurately generated using mathematical software
A word-processed explanatory narrative with correct spelling and grammar will
allow the reader to follow your process

Your report should be an exposition of your finest work and presentation.

In addition to your report, include a reflection of the things you have learned in your calculus
class and how they may apply to the real world. Can you make the argument that calculus is a
useful tool? What kinds of things have you learned that can be useful in your areas of interest?
Please be specific and give some examples to back up your statements. Your reflection
needs to be typed (not hand written) and included with the report.
Math 1210 is a Quantitative Studies General Education course. Scan or save a copy of your
finished report to upload to your SLCC e-Portfolio so that it can be found under this category.
You will NOT receive a grade for the assignment if it is not uploaded to your e-Portfolio.
Instructions for the e-Portfolio are posted on the Canvas site for this course.