Tomas Helenius, Karin Jacobson, Thomas Blomfeldt
Papers # 2014 Chicago
Polyethylene is the leading material for new installation of drinking water pipes in Sweden. The material is recognized by the market as a flexible, light weight and an inexpensive solution. The material is ideal for water piping, however the lifetime is only guaranteed for 50 years. This is a problematic limitation since the expected time of renewing Sweden’s water piping system is estimated to 150 years. Can a lifetime of 150 years be achieved and what is needed to accomplish this?
This is the story of how a research institute, Swerea KIMAB, assists the local water companies with their demand of achieving a 150 years lifetime for their PE-piping systems. Material selection dimensions and possible limitations are discussed. Questions regarding quality, education and maintenance are put into focus; all with the main objective of stretching the lifetime to 150 years. This presentation will discussed how destructive and nondestructive testing can be used to further insure the quality of a PE water piping system. This presentation will further discuss the use and effects of pressure testing as a function test of piping systems and finally present an innovative non-destructive digital x-ray technique that has been implemented as an additional step to ensure the quality of Sweden’s water pipe system.