Amarillo Project Attests To Renewed Interest In Swagelining

July 2011, Vol. 66 No. 7
During the Swagelining process, the PE pipe is pulled through a reduction die to temporarily reduce its diameter.

The Swagelining technique has been around for over 30 years, developed in the late 1970s by British Gas and United Utilities in order to address the problem of failing pipeline systems.

While the technique initially showed promise in the North American market, it failed to achieve widespread acceptance. However, as utilization has continued throughout the world, AJM Pipelines (Jacksonville, FL) President Andy Mayer is re-energizing the technology in North America.

Mayer explained that “Swagelining Limited, a Scottish based company, oversees the technology on a worldwide stage. In 2010, AJM Pipelines was granted the sole rights to utilize the technology in America. The company is the alliance partner for Swagelining for all water, wastewater, gas, mining and water injection pipeline applications.

“After a period of dormancy in the U.S., pipeline rehabilitation by means of Swagelining appears to be poised for a resurgence,” he continued. “This unique rehabilitation technology has been used globally in a wide range of applications transporting products such as potable water, sewage, brine, gas, hydrocarbons and mining slurries since its introduction some time ago. The polyethylene lining technique can be used for rehabilitation of aging pipes in order to extend life of the asset, or new pipelines onshore and subsea as alternatives to a corrosion allowance or use of a CRA pipe material.”

The city of Amarillo, TX recently had a project to renew 2,100 feet of pipeline using the Swagelining technology with 32-inch outside diameter HDPE plastic pipe. A Grundoburst 1250G static pipe bursting unit from trenchless equipment manufacturer TT Technologies, Aurora, IL, was used as the pulling unit for several reasons.

TT Technologies Product Specialist Frank Fresneda said “while the Grundoburst is primarily thought of as a static bursting system, really it is a pulling device -- and a good one at that. It’s not a great leap to go from pulling a static pipe bursting head and HDPE product pipe to pulling a Swageline configuration. Plus, the Quicklock style bursting rods are a benefit to both applications.”

A Grundoburst 1250G static pipe bursting unit from TT Technologies was used as the pulling unit for the Amarillo, TX project.

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