Europe’s Largest Soda Ash Producer Relies on Pipelife’s Drainage System

28. January 2022 | 3 min read

When production depends on an efficiently functioning drainage network, there should be no compromise on quality. Pipelife Bulgaria recently delivered its drainage and wastewater piping systems to Solvay Sodi — the biggest producer of calcinated- and baking soda in Europe. The new piping network will help manage water levels in Solvay Sodi’s Padina sediment basin.

Pragma drainage pipes being installed | Pipelife

Solvay Sodi is operating in the town of Devnya, Bulgaria, producing 1.0-1.5 million tons of soda ash annually. Its sediment basin Padina has been in operation since 1974 and covers a total area of 175 ha.

In 2018, a multi-stage extension project of the Padina basin began with the aim to build a new route for wastewater discharge and a new dam. Due to very high groundwater levels in the area of the new dam, a reliable drainage system is needed to efficiently minimize flood risks during periods of prolonged rainfall.

Expanding Operations in a Sustainable Way

A crucial project consideration for Solvay Sodi was to preserve the ecological balance in the Padina basin’s area and further minimize the company’s environmental footprint. Looking for sustainable drainage solutions, the investor came across Pipelife’s Pragma piping system, which is 100% recyclable. The company appreciated that after the long service life, Pragma pipes could be fully recycled and given a second product life.

Apart from Pragma drainage pipes, the client also chose Pipelife’s 100%-recycled corrugated polyethylene pipes to convey wastewater from the plant to the sediment basin.

Pipelife's drainage and wastewater pipes at the installation site | Pipelife

Pragma: Drainage Pipe Systems for Demanding Conditions

The project specified a drainage system that would ensure safe and trouble-free service life while keeping the water levels of the basin in check under all conditions.

Polypropylene (PP) pipes are ideal for such purposes. This state-of-the-art thermoplastic material combines the strength of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) with the elasticity of polyethylene (PE) with the service temperatures ranging from -5 °C to 100 °C.

Pipelife’s multi-layer PP Pragma pipe system is known among clients for its durability, high ring stiffness and excellent chemical resistance. The combination of these properties makes Pragma drainage pipes an optimal choice for infrastructure drainage systems that have to withstand particularly harsh environments.

A close-up of Pipelife's drainage and wastewater pipes at the installation site | Pipelife
A close-up of Pipelife's Pragma drainage pipes | Pipelife

Customer Service Matching Product Quality

Apart from the high product reliability, the client was also impressed by the overall service provided by Pipelife. Deliveries and transportation were organized to best suit the client’s and project’s needs.

“We appreciate that Pipelife Bulgaria is a partner with the resources to perform full technical and organizational support according to the contract. The company also fully met Solvay group’s requirements regarding project sustainability and work safety,” explains Iliyan Haralanov, Purchase and Warehouse Manager at Solvay Sodi.

In total, Pipelife Bulgaria supplied 480 meters of OD 315 Pragma PP pipes with the necessary fittings to complete the drainage system. In addition, more than 1 kilometer of polyethylene corrugated pipes were delivered for Solvay Sodi’s wastewater network. The construction of both systems was swiftly completed in September 2021.

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