GPS produces new pipe size for UU mains scheme
GPS PE Pipe Systems has pushed the boundaries of manufacturing capabilities by producing a completely new size pipe for one of the UK water industry's largest directional drilling projects.
The mains duplication scheme is a £7M project being undertaken by United Utilities (UU) to ensure it continues to meet customer demands in the Chester, Wirral and Ellesmere Port areas. The new pipeline will follow a similar route to the existing pipe and will transfer raw water from the River Dee to Sutton Hall Water Treatment Works, where the water is cleaned and distributed as fresh drinking water.
A major section of the 1.7km route crosses Chester Approach, a major gateway into Chester City centre, and so 450m of horizontal directional drilling was required to install the pipeline underneath the busy road. As this project required a new pipe size and material, never previously used in the UK water industry, new manufacturing capabilities were needed.
To ensure the pipeline could cater for the future growth of the area, an 800mm pipe was required, but, due to the directional drilling pressures, a minimum 80mm wall thickness was needed, resulting in a required specification of PE100 800mm SDR 11 pipe, a size never previously produced in the UK.
GPS can supply bespoke solutions for customers, and was able to manufacture, test and deliver 450m of PE100 800mm SDR11 pipe within the 12-week timeframe.
Manufactured in 12m lengths for ease of storage and handling on a site within a busy public area, the pipe was then jointed using the butt fusion technique above ground and pushed into the drilled trench to ensure a robust pipeline.
The installation was not without challenges. Working on the River Dee embankment there were several environmental considerations that were carefully mitigated by drilling underneath the surface. The varying ground conditions that the drill needed to navigate, including sandstone, soft clay and hard clay, also caused an array of technical challenges.
It was testament to the careful planning, collaboration with all parties in the supply chain, and precise installation capabilities that ensured the drilling successfully traversed the ground and came up in the exact location along Chester approach without any settlement concerns.
Dan Smith, UU project manager, said: “This new pipeline is vital to ensure we can continue to meet the demand of a growing population. This was a very complex scheme, with such a large directional drilling element making it not only unique but a difficult task to find partners that could deliver the required solutions.”
- UU hires ex-military personnel to drive emergency water tankers United Utilities has recruited seven ex-military personnel to drive its new fleet of 'water on wheels' tankers. Read More >
- New water treatment works set for journey to Invermoriston A new state of the art water treatment works (WTW) is set to make the journey to its long- term home on the banks of Loch... Read More >
- Welsh Water customers enjoy £47M boost Projects including a lead pipe replacement programme, reservoir visitor centres, and support for lowest-earning customers... Read More >
- Techniques to Inform and improve aeration system design and operation Rowland Minall, Operations Director, Aqua Enviro explains the techniques available to inform and improve aeration system... Read More >
- Reaching net carbon zero In summer 2019, the water industry committed to reach net carbon zero by 2030. This is a very ambitious aim and... Read More >
- Carrying out a pipeline assessment A look at how Anglian Water used pipeline assessment technology to determine the condition and remaining service life of a... Read More >
- Rewarding excellence WWT content director Alec Peachey looks ahead to next year's Water Industry Awards. Read More >
- Water pipelines - is there life after design life? Understanding the residual life of pipelines is crucial to making effective investment decisions, writes Guy Cleveland,... Read More >