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PE technical guidance

# What is the recommended maximum operating pressure for a PE pipe?

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## Relationship between MOP, MRS & SDR

The relationship between the maximum operating pressure (MOP), the minimum required strength of the PE pipe grade (MRS) and the pipe geometry (SDR standard dimension ratio) is given by the following formula;

MOP = (20 x MRS) / (C x (SDR-1))

Where C is the ‘overall service (design) coefficient, or Safety Factor.

It is generally recommended that for water and sewer applications the minimum value of C is 1.25 and for gas applications the minimum value of C is 2.0. The designer may apply higher coefficients depending upon national codes of practice or judgment of local conditions and the critical nature of the application.

Example 1: What is the maximum operating pressure of a PE100 SDR11 water pipeline?

MOP = (20 x MRS) / (C x (SDR-1))

MRS = 10 MPa, SDR = 11, C = 1.25

MOP = (20 x 10) / (1.25 x (11-1))

MOP = 16 bar

Example 2: What is the maximum operating pressure of a PE100 SDR17 gas distribution main?

MRS = 10 MPa, SDR = 17, C = 2.0

MOP = (20 x 10) / (2.0 x (17-1))

MOP = 6.25 bar

(Note, other factors such as resistance to rapid crack propagation (RCP) are suggested to be taken into account, particularly for gas applications, to confirm that the calculated MOP can be applied. Refer to EN 1555-1/2 and ISO 4437-1/2)

## References

• EN ISO 12162:2009 Thermoplastics materials for pipes and fittings for pressure applications - Classification and designation - overall Service (Design) coefficient
• EN 1555-1:2021 Plastics piping systems for the supply of gaseous fuels. Polyethylene (PE) - Part 1 General.
• EN 1555-2:2021, Plastics piping systems for the supply of gaseous fuels. Polyethylene (PE) - Part 2 Pipes
• ISO 4437:2024 Plastics piping systems for the supply of gaseous fuels - Polyethylene
• EN 12201-1:2011, Plastics piping systems for water supply, and for drainage and sewerage under pressure - Polyethylene (PE) - Part 1: General
• EN 12201-2:2011, Plastics piping systems for water supply, and for drainage and sewerage under pressure - Polyethylene (PE) - Part 2: Pipes
• ISO 4427-1:2007, Plastics piping systems – Polyethylene (PE) pipes and fittings for water supply – Part 1: General
• ISO 4427-2:2007, Plastics piping systems – Polyethylene (PE) pipes and fittings for water supply – Part 2: Pipes

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Last update Tuesday 19 March 2024
SDR - MOP

How to use the calculator ? Select the External pipe diameter, MRS, C and either the SDR OR a value for the MOP. If you select the SDR, the MOP is calculated or if you enter a MOP value, the SDR is...