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LARGE DIAMETER PIPE | PROCESSING


Think big: advances in large diameter pipe


Large diameter pipe – typically made from polyolefins – is used in a variety of end projects, including energy generation, drainage and the marine industry


Hidden beneath the surface of many large con- struction projects are some surprisingly large pipes – which are used in everything from sewage systems, hydropower plants and even fish farms. For instance, FishGlobe of Norway has con- structed an enormous floating fish farm – 18m tall and 22m in diameter – using polyethylene pipe from Uponor subsidiary Weholite. The company says it is the world’s largest PE plastic structure designed for marine conditions. FishGlobe wanted to build it using PE100 plastic – but it needed to be strong enough to withstand the conditions of the Norwegian Sea and support the size of the structure, which weighs around 200 tonnes. The project uses both Weholite pipes and


Wehopanels, made from layered PE profile. These durable structures can be dimensioned individually for applications including tanks,


www.pipeandprofile.com


underground pumping station chambers and floating or submerged marine structures. In recent years, many innovative new products and struc- tures have been developed using Wehopanel. “This project is the only one of its kind in the


world,” said Kari Karjalainen, export manager at Uponor Infra. “No PE plastic structure of this size has ever before been designed and built for use in marine conditions.” Karjalainen said that a Wehopanel profile was customised for FishGlobe, because no panels this strong and large had been made before. Calcula- tion results ran to “hundreds of pages”, to ensure the durability of the structure, he said. At its Vaasa plant, Uponor Infra robot-welded


Wehopanels up to 3 x 8m, from 250 x 200 x 20mm profiles, for use as the functional shell and internal structures. A Weholite pipe with an internal diameter of 3m served as its central pipe.


Main image: FishGlobe has built an enormous floating fish farm that relies in part on Weholite PE pipe from Uponor


� September 2021 | PIPE & PROFILE EXTRUSION 21


IMAGE: UPONOR


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