May 28, 2020| 3.5 min read
The picturesque Greek island Aegina lies in the Saronic Golf and was in ancient times a great sea power rivalling with the 27-km-far Capital Athens. Today, the 87.41 km2 island is home to somewhat 13,000 inhabitants and seasonal visitors. It boasts beautiful beaches, a clean sea, historical landmarks and pleasant average temperatures, everything a heart may desire. Nevertheless, inhabitants and visitors alike have been missing something for decades: continuous potable water supply. Although practically the entire country has direct access to public water supply, there are some smaller islands like Aegina that depend on tankers bringing water. With its finalization envisaged for 2020, an undersea pipeline realized with Pipelife PE 100 Potable Water Pipes will finally make Aegina's dream come true and connect the island to the public network via Salamina.
The Regional Government of Attica funded the project which has the target to directly supply Aegina island with the much-needed potable water to eliminate the water shortages inhabitants and visitors have been experiencing especially during the summer months.
End of 2017, the Greek construction company C. D. CONSTANTINIDIS S.A. was contracted for the design, construction and future maintenance of an underwater potable water pipeline that would connect Aegina to the EYDAP public water supply network via the island Salamina.
The 14.8-kilometer-long supply pipe connects both islands on a straight line (see Image 2), reaching up to 94 meters below sea-level. It is safe to say that the project is not only a one of a kind project for all parties involved, but for the entire country.
In an international tender by C. D. CONSTANTINIDIS S.A., local pipe producer Pipelife Greece became the partner of choice for the supply of the pipe system.
As early as beginning of 2018, Pipelife entered the planning stage determining particular challenges amongst the unique requirements in close cooperation with the contractor.
To make sure the project would be implemented with 100% success, all steps from pipe production through to welding the 468-meter pipelines, were executed to a specially developed quality assurance plan.
The required blue PE 100 Potable Water Pipes, DN 630, PN 12.5, were successfully extruded to the 18-meter-lengths as defined in the tender with the benefit of reducing project duration and cost-optimizing welding as well as transportation to the site. Since the standard length of Pipelife Greece's PE pipes is usually 13.5 meters, production equipment and storage were modified for the project.
To ensure smooth pipe interiors for optimal flow along the entire length of the assembled pipe, Pipelife's Technical Team designed and developed a semi-automatic internal debeader. This allowed the reliable, efficient and remote removal of each butt-welded internal bead (=seam) in up to 36 meters distance.
The pipes were consequently delivered to Aegina island where two welding stations had been readily set up for Pipelife's certified welding experts to take over the job. On site, they butt-welded the 18-meter-pipes to a total of 33 times 468-meter-long pipe strings, each equipped with stub ends and flanges.
Each of the long length pipe strings was placed onto a specially constructed railway to be thoroughly tested before it was tugged into sea and anchored in a temporary storage area.
Alexandros Petropoulos, Project Manager at C. D. CONSTANTINIDIS S.A. is pleased: "Our project delivery team worked seamlessly with the Pipelife team on both, management and on-site level. We met and solved any interfacing challenges together, from logistics, pipe welding and debeading, engineering, QA/QC, safety to final acceptance."
End of October 2019, Pipelife successfully completed its part in the construction of the underwater pipeline.
"The performance was overall excellent. And the launching and towing of each string to the temporary anchorage area 17 nautical miles away is impressive to watch. It's a testimonial for Pipelife Greece's expertise, flexibility and capability to meet such special project specifications", adds Alexandros Petropoulos.
Turning on the tap and having quality drinking water running out any time of the day and throughout all seasons will considerably improve the quality of life on Aegina.
"We are happy to have had the opportunity to prove our versatility, creativity and reliability as market leader in this remarkable project. Good cooperation and innovative thinking were the key to success and we are proud our products will soon bring relief to so many people", concludes George Lysseos, General Manager of Pipelife Greece.