Shaping a new future: Trailblazing innovation for the trenchless rehabilitation of potable water pipes

Shaping a new future: Trailblazing innovation for the trenchless rehabilitation of potable water pipes

Saerbeck, May 2016

Shaping a new future:
Trailblazing innovation for the trenchless rehabilitation of potable water pipes

 

Seen from space, the water supply on Earth looks endless. Around 70% of the planet’s surface is covered with water. However, this impression is misleading: only 3% of all the resources consist of fresh water, and half of that is locked in the ice at the polar caps.

So does that mean that we are handling our drinking water carefully? No. In the major cities around the world, in particular, outdated pipe systems are still used, maintenance work is postponed and leaks are ignored. “In this way, millions and millions of litres seep away unused into the ground,” explained Dr. Nils Füchtjohann, Head of Research & Development at SAERTEX multiCom®. Let’s take Rio de Janeiro as an example: around 37% of the drinking water in the Brazilian capital is wasted every year due to leaking pipes and hydrants.

Dr. Füchtjohann has been concerned with this problem for several years. The 40-year-old has been working for SAERTEX multiCom® since 2008, and the breakthrough came last year. With his team, Dr. Füchtjohann has developed a trailblazing innovation: the SAERTEX-LINER® H2O. The UV curable GRP liner is used for the trenchless rehabilitation of potable water pipes from DN 200 to DN 1,200 mm (up to 1,500 mm by the end of 2016) and is therefore unique. “With our technology, we can rehabilitate up to 320 metres of potable water pipes in an extremely short time, even under the harshest conditions,” he said. All that is needed is to excavate an access to the faulty pipe and then to rehabilitate it with SAERTEX-LINER® H2O using the classic installation process. Any processing or mixing of resins on the building sites can be dispensed with entirely, because the liner is already impregnated at the company’s own plant, which is certified to ISO 9001.

In this way, SAERTEX multiCom® ensures that both man and the environment are protected against any unnecessary burdens due to resins or chemicals. At the same time, this installation process excludes any impurities due to dirt, liquids or lubricants and also eliminates any bacteria. The pipe can be connected to the network again after just a short time.

The procedure has already gained approval for the USA, Germany and Brazil and is being presented officially to the international market for the first time at IFAT in Munich. “Our aim is not only to offer new possibilities to the inhabitants of major cities like Rio de Janeiro, but to give access to hygienically clean drinking water to people all over the world. And to do so in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way,” said Dr. Füchtjohann. After all, our water resources are limited – even if a look down at Earth from space seems to promise the opposite.