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Automation for the people ~ Why mechanical automation is key to reducing injury in quarrying ~

Harrowing statistics from the European Agency for Safety and Health at Workstate that quarry workers are twice as likely to be killed in aaccidentthanconstruction workers, and thirteen times more likely than those workingin manufacturing.Theres no doubt the industry can be dangerous, but how can mechanical automation support health and safety in the sector?Here David Strain, technical director at integrated automation systemexpert, Technidrive,explains

Data from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) shows that over 3,500 quarry workers have suffered an injury reportable to HSE since 2000, with 31 of those being fatalThere are several initiativesto improve safety in the sector, this includes Target Zero, a Quarries National Joint Advisory Committee (QNJAC) scheme that has helped to reduce quarry accidents by over 80 per cent since 2000.

While this invaluable scheme — which includes training conferences and the creation of informative material — hasachievedgreat things for the industry, the most effective way to minimisehuman risks in quarrying is to remove them from the most dangerousaspects. Automation is key to achievethis. 

Automated equipment is alreadywidely used to perform drilling, blasting, loading, hauling and sorting of materials. In addition to increasing speed and accuracyin these processesautomationcan remove the need for operators to work intimately with dangerous equipment.

However, one area that oftenrequires human intervention is the unblocking of jaw crushers. By nature, a jaw crusher must be incredibly strong. Rock enters the crusherfrom the topof the machine and gets compressed between two surfaces — the fixed and moveable jaw. The rock will continue to be crushed until it is small enough to fall through the opening. Unfortunately, these crushers occasionally get blocked by the rocks and stones

Naturally, prevention is better than cureEvery effort should be made by the quarryteam to prevent blockagesoccurring, for instance: designing quarry blasts to achieveoptimum rockfragmentation, reducing oversize material, and ensuring that filler buckets are appropriatelysized for the capacity of the crusherHowever, occasional blockages are still inevitable.

In the past, operators have succumbed to dangerous methods of removing blocked stonesQuestionable tactics include using a tooth on chain to get the jaw to bite — creating the possibility for the tooth to be ejected at high velocity. Or,using brute forcewith a jack hammersledgehammer or similar tobreak the stones or pry them from position. If youve ever seen a sling give way in this situation, youll think twice about this method.

Technidrive had witnessed these risks first hand and wanted to develop a system to remove human intervention in this dangerous job.The vision was an automatedsystem that unblocks a crusher using mechanical forward and reversing actions to shift the stones. The system would sense when the blockage had been freed and give anautomated signal to notify operators that the process was complete. 

Technidrive developed its innovativejaw crusher unblock systemin 2015, and it has since been deployed at quarries across EuropeThe team began its design by carrying out torque and speed calculations to determine whatdrive system was neededIn addition to the motor, we needed a variable speed drive (VSD) that could control the speed and torque.

Cruciallythe system couldoffer startupwhen starting the jaw crusher from full.Tachievethis, the team developed its own innovativesoftwarewhich ensuredthe VSDcould be remotely activated in unblock mode and operators would be kept out of harm’sway.

Since theinitial development, Technidrive has created similar equipment for several other businesses in the quarrying industry. Treating each project on an individualbasis, the organisation has been able to design, manufacture and deliver bespoke turnkey systems to a number of different sites. 

When workingalongside earth-moving equipment, removing operators from the most hazardousaspects should be a nobrainer. While the quarrying industry will always be among the worldmost dangerous sectors, mechanicalautomation can play a crucialrole in reducing risk and supporting the industryefforts towards Target Zero.

For more information on Technidrive and the systems integrator’s jaw crusher unblock, or contact the team atsales@tec> A video of the jaw crusher unblock system can also be found on the Technidrive YouTube channel.

New lining system a ‘game-changer’ for high-rise drain maintenance

National drainage and wastewater specialist Lanes Group plc is promising to transform the rehabilitation of vertical drainage stacks with a revolutionary LED pipe lining system.

The company has proven it can significantly speed up the previously difficult process of lining both rainwater and foul stack pipes, with less disruption, using far less energy and creating less material waste.

Laneshas become the first contractor in the UK to line tall building drain stacks using the BrawoMagnavityLED light cured in place pipe (CIPP) system supplied by trenchless technology specialist S1E.

It has lined six 47-metre cast iron rainwater stacks at a 12-storey block of flats in Birmingham, with five more blocks in the pipeline – and says the technology can be used to rehabilitate rainwater and foul stacks in office and factory buildings as well.

Mark Scott, Manager of the Lanes Birmingham depot,which is leading the company’s investment in the BrawoMagnavity technology, pictured,said: “We were able to install and cure each liner in just two hours, which is far quicker than is possible with conventional lining technology.

“This level of performance makes the technology a realgame-changer. It means stacks can be lined much more quickly, more sustainably, and to a consistently high quality standard.

Property owners can now be confident, for the first time, that a significant maintenance headache can be resolved with a cost-effective,planned repair programme.

Faulty rain and foulwater stacks are a prime cause of damp, mould and substrate damage in a wide range of high-rise residential, commercial and industrial buildings, which can trigger serious health problems for occupants and require costly repairs.

The BrawoMagnavityNano LED CIPP system provides a long-term cure for these problems by installing tough and waterproof liners insidedefective pipes, giving them a new design life of up to 50 years.

It can be used to line both vertical and horizontal pipes with internal diameters from 70mm to 250mm.Liners up to 50 metres long can be installedincluding being ‘blind shot’ into a pipe from a single chamber. This means pipes runs of up to 100 metres can be lined between chambers.

A key innovation is the way the system’s LED light head is sent along the pipe, held in place by a powerful electric magnet, at the same time as the liner is inverted into it with compressed air.

The magnet is then switched off, allowing the LED light head, with its 96 individual lights, to be pulled back through the pipe while curing resin at a rate of up to 0.6 meters a minute.

Because the magnet guides the liner so effectively through the pipe, it can negotiate multiple bends of up to 90 degrees, something other CIPP lining systems fail or struggle to achieve.

The specialist 3D liners selected by Lanes for the high-rise stacks are flexible so accommodate the 70mm to 100mm changes in diameter in the pipes being lined.

The advanced odourless resin developed by Brawo is stable until exposed to LED light, giving the Lanes lining team all the time it needs to prepare the liner for curing. By contrast, ambient cure liners must be inserted in a specified time before the resin starts to harden.

Mark Scott said: “We can now line vertical stacks to a deadline and standard that would be impossible with hot water CIPP due to the weight of the water in the liner, and would be risky with ambient cure CIPP because of the unpredictability of curing times, and the production of toxic vapours.”

This artice can be also found in the issue below.


New WJA Red Code updates drain jetting standards

The Water Jetting Association has published a new edition of its Red Code of Practice with important new information and advice about water jetting in drains and sewers.

The code of practice by members and stakeholders, including the Health and Safety Executive, to ensure it sets the most up-to-date standards for water jetting practices.

WJA President John Jones said: “The WJA Red Code plays an essential role in setting recognised standards for water jetting in the drainage and water utility industries in the UK and internationally, so this is an important step forward.

Drainage equipment and techniques are always evolving, in some areas very rapidly, so we were very keen to thoroughly update code.

The HSE has liaised closely with us on key sections in the code of practice, because it sees it as a vital benchmark for safe practice.

This gives our members and all interested parties working in the drainage and wastewater sectors confidence that the WJA Red Code is robust and authoritative.”

Code strengthened

The revision process has led to 3,200 changes to the Red Code. For example, its formal title has been extended to include surface preparation up to 275 bar.

This acknowledges the addition of new advice in the code of practicerelated to washdown activities, often carried out by drainage and wastewater operatives, especially where there has been a sewage flood or where larger wastewater assets are being cleaned.

Guidance on key activities has been strengthened – with 156 instances where the word ‘should’ for an action has been changed to ‘shall’ indicating that the action must be carried out.

There is new guidance for hire companies and their clients to clarify their roles and responsibilities for ensuring equipment is handed over in a safe condition and advice on the competency of users is understood.

The Red Code also includes additional advice on foot control valves (FCV), with clear guidance on the different types of FCVs, how they work and their safe use.

Safe operational culture

WJA Ruling Council member Jeff Haigh, the association’s auditing and service quality lead, has played a leading role in incorporating all the changes to the document, extending it in the process, from 79 to 109 pages.

He said: “Drainage and wastewater contractors have the opportunity to use the WJA Red Code as a firm foundation upon which to build a demonstrably safe and effective operational culture for its water jetting practices that will impress their workforce, clients and regulatory bodies alike.”

The Red Code also underpins the WJA’s City & Guilds accredited training courses so learned water jetting practices are aligned with the highest possible standards.

Course sizes increased

The courses include a drain and sewer practical module. This module was also reviewed in 2022, and a new interactive digital clickpad Q&A system introduced, as an alternative to the end-of-course questionnaire for assessing learning outcomes.

In another move, the  WJA has also increased the number of delegates it permits to attend all its City & Guilds accredited training courses.

It is now allowing WJA approved instructors to train up to 12 delegates at a time, as long as risk assessments for safety and training quality have been carried out.

Previously, 12 delegates could attend safety awareness and pressure washing courses, eight could attend surface preparation, drain and sewer, and tube and pipe practical modules, and six could attend the hydrodemolition module.

This article can also be found in the issue below.


Two-Way Drum Pump

EXAIR’s compressed air operated Reversible Drum Vac System attaches quickly to any closed head 30, 55 or 110 gallon drum. Its high powered vacuum fills a 55 gallon drum in less than two minutes. With the turn of a knob, the same stainless steel pump quickly empties the drum.

The Reversible Drum Vac System is a safe, maintenance-free way to recover coolant, hydraulic oils, liquid spills, sludge and chips, tramp oil, waste water and more. Coolant sumps can be easily refilled, floor spills vacuumed, or contaminated liquids transferred to filtration tanks in minutes. The flow rate in and out of the drum can be controlled with the knob, making it ideal for dispensing liquids. 

The Reversible Drum Vac is only one of the many industrial vacuums EXAIR offers. Check out the High Lift Reversible Drum Vac, EasySwitch Wet-Dry Vac, Chip Trapper, High Lift Chip Trapper, Chip Vac, Heavy Duty Dry Vac, Heavy Duty HEPA Vac and Vac-u-Gun.


Parker joins North West Hydrogen Alliance to support clean energy transition

Membership will encourage supply chain collaborations and enable member companies to access essential hydrogen components and subsystems

Parker Hannifin’s Sales Company UK and Irelandtoday announcedthat it has become a member of the North West Hydrogen Alliance (NWHA)the largest industry-funded regional hydrogen alliance in the UK.

The NWHA brings together some of the most influential organisations in the North West focused on developing a hydrogen economy for the nation,providing opportunities for supply chains to meet, collaborate and maximise hydrogen opportunities. Its experts and spokespeople provide a prominent voice in the hydrogen debate.

Robert Airey, Parker’s UK Market Development Manager – Clean Fuels, said: Parker is committed to a clean energy transition and has over 50 years of hydrogen experience, working with businesses around the worldNWHA membership will helpus to accelerate the hydrogen economy in the UK’s North Westand throughout the country.”

Professor Joe Howe, Chair of the NWHA and Executive Director, Energy Research Institute at the University of Chester, said that Parker’s membership would create new opportunities for collaborations with the supply chain in the North West.Developing a thriving supply chain will be essential in ensuring the North West capitalises on the huge opportunities that a hydrogen economy presents in the UK. Parker can support our members by providing access to essential components and subsystems, helping them to deploy hydrogen technologies quickly and safely.

Parker's hydrogen range covers low/high pressures, low temperatures, custom products and subsystems. Its products includevalves, manifolds, gas and liquid filtration, connectors, cryogenics, cooling, and more. And its applications support everything from production, power generation and transportation through to storage and distribution. 

Parker works directly with OEM manufacturers or through selectedpartners such asindustry specialists, integrators and distribution.

Learn more at

Altus is Ready to Continue on its Growth Path in Ireland

Since establishing a dedicated Irish business division less than two years ago,Altus Groupa leading distributor of capital equipment for electronics assembly,is continuing its growth path within the region. With strong sales predicated for the yearand an increase in staffplanned, progress within this region is expected to increase further in 2023.

Although Altus has always covered the UK and Ireland in its 21-year history, it wasn’t until 2021 that the company made specific investment in the Irish territory with a new facility and dedicated staff to cover the region. These business activities were important growth drivers and are classed as one of the company’s most significant achievements.

Joe Booth, Altus CEO explains“Seeing the progression of Ireland for Altus has been one our biggest success stories and an area that I am most proud of. What makes it even more exciting is that we have only just begun this epic journey.

“We have made huge progress in Ireland, developed new growth potential and continue to build our customer base within the region. Our dedicated Irish team, which includes Sales ManagerGareth Fenton and Senior Applications EngineerMichal Ostrykiewicz have been instrumental inbuilding on existing relationships and nurturing new ones to establish Altus Ireland as a front runner in its field.

In Michal and Gareth, we have found great people with a close alignment with our mission and long-term ambitions. Our success is due to their hard work and determination to be the best at what we do for the customers we serve. Because of their determination and wins, we are ahead of our business plan schedule, and we are looking to bolster our team with another engineering support expert this year

For Altus it is important that the service our customers receive does not diminish as we become more successful. Investing in new staffwill mean that we can continue to be a high-quality provider but continue to grow to our organisation’s potential in this special region.

Altus is pursuing its purposeful growth in Ireland with a clear strategic growth plan which ensures the company continues to be the ‘go to’ partner for capital equipment projects. They will achieve this by focusing on developing the sales and support infrastructure in the region to help maximise the tier one brands within the portfolio.

The first event of the year where Altus will meet its Irish customers en-masse is at the Manufacturing and Supply Chain exhibition in Dublin in May. The team will connect key stakeholders across the full spectrum of British manufacturing and present its innovative range of equipment. To find out more visit

Biogas benefits at the farm with tough new mixers

A farm in the north west of Kent has significantly enhanced its biogas operation by upgrading the mixing system for its two 4500m3 anaerobic digesters.

Oncoland Farm (part of The Billings Group) had been experiencing problems with the mixers that were installed when the gas-to-grid AD plant was built in 2020 as part of its continuing diversification. Traditionally, a mixed farm of arable, dairy and beef, Oncoland has successfully added hops, vines and renewable energy to its portfolio as part of its drive towards Net Zero. However, as Plant Manager, Carl Woolley discovered, the mixers that were included as part of the package deal, were unsuitable for the feedstock that combines the farm’s cattle slurry with waste from vegetables grown at the 2500-acre site, such as cabbage, potatoes and carrots. Oncoland’s feedstock also includes waste pomegranate and mango that is first sent though a hammer mill.

“The mixers would have probably been fine for a standard mix or maize and slurry,” said Carl, “but for a plant such as ours with varying types of waste, you need much sturdier equipment. Only six months in to us producing biogas, we started to see that the submersible mixers were beginning to fail due to the ingress of water. Although the separate, paddle mixers in the digesters continued to do their job, over time, the submersible mixers, one-by-one, gave up the ghost”.

Working closely with James Gorridge at Mid-Kent Electrical Engineering (MKE), Carl looked at how best to resolve the issue with the submersible mixers and get the plant to its optimum operation.

“We weighed up the costs of retrieving the faulty mixers for repair and rewinding,” said James Gorridge, “but we both knew how disruptive that would be to the whole process, and the fact that we’d be fixing equipment that was inevitably going to fail again in only a short period of time”.

‘More cost-effective and reliable in the long term’

Carl Woolley added: “Removing the submersible mixers would have first involved waiting for dry, calm weather and hiring in a crane. Then, two full days of arduous work and a huge amount of downtime in halting the biogas process, emptying the digesters, and then starting everything up again. We both went away to consider the best, long-term solution. MKE have always supplied us with very good quality motors and drives, with a very good turnaround and attention to detail, so I knew they believed in quality. During my career I’d seen just how robust mixers and pumps are from Landia. And based on his separate previous experience with Landia equipment, James agreed that despite the higher capital investment, their mixers would actually work out to be far more cost-effective and reliable in the long term, significantly reducing our maintenance costs”.

When the four failing submersible mixers were finally removed, it was discovered that their propellers had actually experienced very little wear.

“This was because they were the wrong shape and didn’t really do anything”, continued Carl Woolley. “With just a couple of basic seals, they just weren’t designed for this type of biogas application, so had started to let liquid in very early after they were installed”.

To optimise the process, Carl and MKE also saw that the mixers has been underspecified, so chose to go up a mixer size.

“We knew this would further improve the mixing, which is crucial for any biogas plant”, added James Gorridge from MKE. “It would also have less impact on the new mixers from Landia, which would only have to run for 20 minutes per hour (compared to 24/7 for the failed mixers), saving considerably on energy consumption”.

Four of Landia’s POP-I (18.5kW 300rpm) mixers were installed (two on each digester), with an immediate positive effect on the process, which typically handles dry solids of around 8% and higher.

‘Comprehensive mixing’

“Previously”, said Carl Woolley, “it took time for everything in the tanks to get going, but the new Landia mixers resuspended the contents almost immediately. We now get comprehensive mixing and no crust whatsoever.  The other important benefit is that the mixers are easy to maintain, especially with their twin-mechanical seals.”

In addition to the two primary digesters, Oncoland’s pre-treatment tank (70m3) has also benefitted from an upgrade to more suitable equipment; this time with a Landia Chopper Pump (invented by the company in 1950).

‘Constantly conditioned’

“We took the opportunity to widen our upgrade to the pre-treatment tank,” said Carl Woolley. “Again, the submersible mixer that was supplied as part of the plant package wasn’t up to the job, leaving lumps in the feedstock and dead spots in the tank. But now with the Landia Chopper Pump (11kW), which is extremely reliable, the feedstock of slurry from our dairy unit, plus the vegetable and fruit waste, is constantly conditioned so that our process benefits from a consistent soup. The Chopper Pump’s blades remain fine and sharp”.

He added: “With both the Landia pump and mixers, we now have peace of mind. Working with James at MKE, we saw that we could have bought mixers at around £4K less per unit, but biogas feedstocks are unforgiving.  The whole process is about learning and nurturing. There’s just no hiding place for equipment that isn’t sturdy. We bought on reputation and can see already what a sound investment it has been. Biogas is a different beast here in the UK, so best buy the mixers and pumps that are fit for purpose.”

Stock management for cost savings

For companies seeking opportunities to cut costs, re-evaluating the stock they hold and how they manage it could reap significant rewards, says Paul Scriven, of manufacturing solutions provider Thorite.

Good stock management can be a cornerstone of efficient and cost-effective operations, saving considerable staff time and keeping down time to a minimum.

But busy plants and fast-moving production lines can mean that, even with the best intentions, managing inventory can become reactive, and storage systems disorganised.

Yet solutions are available that can secure long term savings and greater efficiency.

The system for replacing components typically involves a chain of actions which can be slow. To avoid the risk of running out of stock at a crucial point in production, it is common practice to buy in more stock than is actually needed – thereby paying for products which might not be used. Another risk of financial waste comes when plant operatives are tempted to hoard key components line-side.

A potentially high – but less obvious – cost is the amount of time staff spend collecting components from the storeplace.

For example, one Thorite customer, a manufacturer whose plant covered an area of 175,000 sq/m, conducted a time and motion study and calculated that it took an engineer an average of seven minutes to walk to and from their workstation to collect components. Imagine the cost of this in wasted time when scaled up to multiple trips by multiple different engineers?

The calculation did not take into account the considerable time lost by engineers having to search for products through a messy and disorganised tubing cabinet.

Thorite’s solution simplifies and streamlines the system. 

First, an audit was conducted to establish stock requirements. A Kanban system was then created, with two identical tubs containing the appropriate number of components, located close to operatives in relevant areas of the factory.

As one container is emptied on site, it is instantly replaced by the second and Thorite delivers a replacement back-up tub within 24 hours. The client pays for a replacement tub onlywhen the first is empty. This rolling system of stock replenishment means it never runs out of essential components.

Additionally, Thorite designed a bespoke tubing dispenser, with tubing automatically replaced when it reaches the last 10m of a spool.

These stock management solutions are suitable for any industrial setting and size. Thorite can also provide a personalised line-side supply of components that an engineer uses on the most regular basis.

Component kits

Components in kit form make working life simpler for staff and management alike.

For example, a machine requiring 38 different components, all 38 parts will be supplied in one pre-packed box, along with a bill of materials (BOM) that serves as a checklist for the engineer and reduces the risk of human error. 

Component kits can be made to any size, so are of particular value to smaller companies.


The benefits of a streamlined stock management system include:

• The client never runs out of stock
• Unexpected breakdowns are more quickly resolved
• Time saved accrues financial savings
• Billing is more consistent
• Stock taking is no longer required
• Problems caused by hoarding and human error are eliminated

Introducing streamlined solutions which are simple, practical and cost-efficient is a quick-win way to help manage finances effectively and make everyday operations more efficient.

This article can also be found in the issue below.


Celeros Flow Technology strengthens leadership team with appointment of new COO

Celeros Flow Technology has strengthened its leadership team with the appointment of Rich Morin as its new Chief Operations Officer (COO).  Based in Houston, TX, he will provide leadership and direction for the full scope of fulfilment activities across Celeros FT’s Pumps, Valves and Closures product groups.  

Commenting on the appointment, José Larios, CEO of Celeros Flow Technology, says: “We welcome Rich to our leadership team. This is a strategic appointment and the COO’s primary purpose is to continually develop our supply chain and manufacturing performance. Rich will beworking with our site management teams in the development, implementation, and monitoring of various improvement initiatives. He is accountable for delivering higher quality, improved delivery, and enhanced profitability; all while maintaining and improving the system of safety across our operations.

Rich brings a strong track record of successful results and 25+ years of experience in a variety of energy markets to his new role.  After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree from the US Naval Academy and spending three years in the navy, he held roles of progressive responsibility and leadership within GE Energy and GE Oil & Gas. Rich most recently served as the Vice President of Oilfield Equipment Enterprise Operations at Baker Hughes before joining the Celeros FT team.  He also holds a Master’s Degree in Science with a focus on Engineering and Global Operations Management from Clarkson University.

SONAPHONE® & SONASCREEN®: The easiest and fastest way to save money and energy

On average, 30% of energy in industrial compressed air systems is wasted due to leaks. This not only causes unnecessary energy waste, but also contributes to a lower plant operational reliability. Therefore, improving energy efficiency in compressed air systems is an important issue in all areas of manufacturing and process technology, as compressed air is one of the most expensive energy resources. 

Ultrasound is a proven technology for air leak detection which helps to avoid additional costs associated with misdiagnosed equipment failures and unplanned downtime. Detecting air leaks and repairing or replacing defective equipment can result in significant savings and help companies meet their energy targets.

The ultrasonic testing devices SONAPHONE® and SONASCREEN®, which are developed and manufactured by SONOTEC, offer simple, precise and fast leak detection and help significantly cut costs and reduce CO2 emissions. A clear benefit is that ultrasonic leak detection can be performed with the machines running, which means no additional downtime is required. It saves a lot of time and allows plants to focus on the core production tasks.

SONAPHONE®: The Powerful Ultrasonic Testing Device ForPredictiveMaintenance
The SONAPHONE® is used in combination with a BS10 airborne sound sensor and a very intuitive "LeakExpert" software app to detect and evaluate leaks in compressed airsystems. The broadband frequency of the SONAPHONE® which is ranging from 20 to 100 kHz enables a quick and precise leak detection despite the industrial noises typical for manufacturing facilities. Graphical output of the test data is shown as a spectogram and leaks are displayed in litres per minute and cost per year. This information can be used to set priorities for repair. The integrated documentation functions enable modern broadband ultrasonic analysis andmaintenancemanagement. All relevant information about a leak is stored directly in the SONAPHONE® database. Your measurement data can be exported in pdf or csv format in just a few steps and integrated into your maintenance software.

SONASCREEN®: Extend Your Senses
The new handheld acoustic camera SONASCREEN® generates acoustic images from both the audible and ultrasound frequency range. The device with IP54 protection has integrated data acquisition. It locates sound sources in real time and displays the results immediately on the screen. Additionally, the camera provides audible feedback through industrial headphones. It makes ultrasound not only audible, but also visible as you can see the leaks directly on your display. The SONASCREEN® enables fast leak detection in compressed air systems and helps to unlock energy saving opportunities. The device makes it possible to start the maintenance process without prior training, as it is very intuitive even for beginners. Thanks to the intuitive handling as well as pre-set setups, even inexperienced users can correctly evaluate the results at a glance.

Every production plant needs an effective leak detection maintenance program to locate and detect air leaks before they cause significant problems. To ensure efficient operation of the compressor, it is important to repair the defective parts of the system as soon as possible. With ultrasonic leak detectors, developed and manufactured by SONOTEC in Germany, it is easy to take care of critical equipment and increase energy efficiency. Ultrasonic leak detection made easy!

For further information, please visit

This article can be found in the issue below.

ISO/ASME Compliant Composite Pipe Repair System – "Belzona SuperWrap II"

AB619004 1400 486D 8EBE 8C043ED6E558 











In the past, the repair of deteriorated pipework involved the welding of plates and sleeves, the use of bespoke clamps or the partial replacement of the faulty section. In recent years, however, the use of polymeric composite materials for the repair of pipes has gained worldwide support and interest. The main reasons for this are: the composite repair can be based on engineered structural calculations in accordance with internationally recognised standards; unlike welding, it is a safe cold process that can be carried out in areas where hot work is prohibited; it can be carried out at lower cost and provide long repair life sufficient to be taken as a permanent repair. This paper describes Belzona SuperWrap II, including details of various tests conducted on the system to comply with both ISO 248171 and ASME PCC-2 (Article 401)2, the two major international standards for composite pipe repair.

D6DFCF9E 70CA 4C45 BDB5 0C6E9B163ABE






Image 1: In-field application of Belzona SuperWrap II on a corroded pipeline


Pipelines, especially those of large diameter, can efficiently transport large volumes of liquids and gases over long distances. Operating over long distances through various landscapes, environments and conditions, pipelines can be subject to internal and external effects from numerous factors. Differences in height cause internal pressure fluctuations, while changes in temperature cause the pipe material to expand and contract; from these behaviours, pipelines are subjected to physical loads such as bending, shear, torsion and fatigue. At the same time, the inner walls of the pipes can be exposed to corrosion and chemical attack, depending on the chemicals involved in the media. Similarly, under conditions of inadequate protection, pipes are also subject to external corrosion.

These effects, acting alone or in combination, can cause damage to the pipe wall in the form of metal loss and eventually lead to through-wall defects, leading to leakage problems. Leaks can also have disastrous consequences, meaning shutdowns and environmental impact. For this reason, it is incumbent on facility owners and operators to take proactive precautions to prevent the worst from happening.

Belzona SuperWrap II composite repair

Belzona SuperWrap II is a pipe repair technology based on a polymer-based composite of epoxy resin and reinforcing fibres, using a wet-wrapping technique in which the resin-impregnated reinforcing fibres are wrapped directly around the pipe defectand cured.

Two material properties are key to the development of composite materials for the repair of wall thinning and leakage defects in pipes: mechanical strength and stiffness. Mechanical strength depends on the maximum tensile stress that a material can withstand without failure and is determined from its tensile strength. Stiffness, on the other hand, refers to the elasticdeformation of a material when a force is applied and is defined by the Young's modulus (also known as tensile modulus or modulus of elasticity). In the case of polymeric composites, the mechanical strength and stiffness depend to a large extent on the properties of the reinforcing fibre. The resin is responsible for transferring the load between the reinforcing fibres. The success of a composite repair also depends on the adhesive strength of the resin, as it must be integrated with the pipe substrate.

In the development of the Belzona SuperWrap II, several combinations of resins and reinforcing fibres were considered. In the end, a two-component epoxy resin with 100% solids content, consisting of a phenolic novolac base (main agent) and an amine solidifier, was chosen. The main reason for this was the emphasis on the fact that epoxy resins can achieve better adhesion and mechanical strength compared to other functional polymer groups, including polyurethanes, methacrylates, alkyds, vinyls and polyesters. The possibility of forming highly cross-linked polymer matrices, which are the basis for excellent heat and chemical resistance, should also be supplemented as one of the reasons for concluding that phenolic novolac epoxy resins are the best choice.

In general, epoxy resins are slow to cure at low temperatures, but when heat is applied, the reaction is activated and the resin cures in a shorter time. Taking into account the temperature conditions at the time of application, which tend to be affected by climatic differences, two types of resin were initially developed (Belzona 1981 and Belzona 1982 resins), followed by Belzona 1983 resin with improved heat resistance (see Table 1).Today, three different types of resin are available, allowing the user to select the most suitable material depending on the temperature conditions.

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The most suitable reinforcing fibre material was selected on the basis of the material's mechanical strength and stiffness, as well as its workability (cutting, resin impregnation, on-site handling, etc.). After carefully considering all the pros and cons of each material, it was decided to use a hybrid fibre, a combination of carbon fibre and glass fibre, which is produced as Belzona 9381 to be an optimised reinforcement fibre sheet for Belzona SuperWrap II. Belzona 9381 reinforcing sheet has a two-layer construction, with carbon fibre on the front and glass fibre on the back, to maximise the benefits of both fibres and to achieve the most efficient distribution and arrangement in terms of physical properties and workability. This is because the glass fibre and epoxy resin layer are designed to act as an insulator to prevent corrosion currents from flowing through the conductive carbon fibre. The reinforcing fibre sheets are available in severaldifferent widths to accommodate different pipe diameters, with wider sheets being particularly useful for special geometries such as bends, tees, flanges, reducers, as well as the walls and roofs of large storage tanks.

After the resin-impregnated reinforcing fibres have been wrapped around the pipe, a special consolidating film called Belzona 9382 is used to hold the repair in place until the resin has cured. Once the resin has cured, the film can be easily removed.

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Image 2: Damaged pipeline after suffering from Corrosion Under Insulation (CUI)

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Image 3:After rebuilding the pipe to original profile using Belzona 1111, several wraps of Belzona 9381 were applied

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Image 4:The pipe repair before the removal of the release film

Compliance with standards

The Composite repair of pipework requires a high degree of reliability, especially in the case of high pressure piping systemsor for pipes carrying hazardous media. For this reason, rigorous third-party and in-house testing is carried out to demonstrate compliance with a series of requirements set out in ISO 24817 and ASME PCC-2. For the tests aimed at assessing the mechanical properties of the materials, plate specimens made of reinforcing fibre and each resin were used. On the other hand, in the pressure resistance test aimed at evaluating durability of the system, a short pipe spool with pseudo-defects of the specified dimensions was repaired with the system, followed by a pressure resistance test for confirmation. A summary of each test is given in Table 2.

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Test results and verification

Table 3 shows some results of the physical property tests. In parentheses are the curing temperatures of the specimens.

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In the tensile shear bond strength test, the bond strength of the resins is measured in two ways as: 1) cured for 7 days at specified temperature conditions (short-term condition), and 2) immersion in water for 1000 hours at specified temperature conditions (long-term condition), both using carbon steel as the adherend. The comparison of the results of the low and high temperature tests is intended to see the effect of temperature changes on the adhesive strength of the resins. All the results comply with the requirements of ISO 24817 in two respects:

(a) The tensile shear bond strength of each resin is >5 MPa for short- and long-term conditions
(b) For each resin, the long-term values are at least 30% of the short-term values

The glass transition temperature (Tg) is the temperature at which a polymer material begins to soften as it is heated. It is a common phenomenon for thermoplastics and its value is often referred to in assessing the thermal properties and thermal resistance of resin-based repair techniques. When the resin is heated while it is curing, the density of the cross-linking increases and the glass transition temperature rises. When Belzona 1981 resin is cured at 60°C, Belzona 1982 resin at 80°C and Belzona 1983 resin at 150°C, the glass transition temperatures are 90°C, 115°C and 188°C respectively (see Table 3).

Piping systems under pressure are subject to the Poisson effect. Due to the circumferential stresses occurring inside the pipe, the diameter of the pipe increases slightly, but at the same time there is a contraction in the axial direction and the pipe becomes shorter. Therefore, a Poisson's ratio close to the value of the pipe is required for the composites to be a suitable material to restore the mechanical strength of the pipelines. The Poisson's ratio of the Belzona SuperWrap II material is close enough to that of steel. This means that when a typical steel pipe is subjected to compressive or tensile loads, the accompanying SuperWrap II repair reacts similarly to the base metal.

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Image 5: Belzona SuperWrap II being applied

Young's modulus (tensile modulus) is a measure of the stiffness of a material, and the SuperWrap II materials have high Young's modulus of 37-39 GPa, meaning that the repair will have good stiffness and bending moment. From a practical point of view, when assessing the performance of a composite pipe repair, it is reported that a standard modulus of elasticity of 6,895 MPa or higher is desirable,3 and the values of SuperWrap II materials arewell above this. On the other hand, considering that the Young's modulus of ordinary steel is about 200 GPa, SuperWrap II materials, which have about one-fifth, are far more elastic than steel, and in this sense, it can be said that SuperWrap II repairhas excellent elasticity and can easily follow the movement of the base metal.

The thermal expansion coefficient of a solid material indicates the extent to which its length and volume change when subjected to a change in temperature under constant pressure conditions. Piping, which is subjected to a variety of operating conditions, generally undergoes repeated expansion and contraction as a result of temperature changes. Therefore, composite materials used to restore the mechanical strength of pipe materials must also be able to cope with thermal strain. The linear expansion coefficient of Belzona SuperWrap II materialscured at ambient temperature are between 9.40 and 11.26 x 10-6 /K, which is close to that of ordinary steel (11-12.5 x 10-6 /K).4This means that the stress effect (thermal strain) on the adhered surface caused by the difference in thermal expansion between the composite materials and the base metal is minimal.

Table 4 shows the conditions for durability testing of the SuperWrap II composite materials.

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The short-term pressure test evaluates the performance of Belzona SuperWrap II against wall thinning defects (no penetration). The objective is to determine the maximum level of wall thinning that can be repaired. The test is carried out on a short carbon steel spool with a pseudo-defect (wall loss) of a specified size. The repair is designed to restore the yield strength of the original pipe wall. The test pressure was calculated as the yield pressure of the test spool in its original sound condition(test pressures indicated in Table 4). The difference in test pressure between the Belzona 1981/1982 resins and Belzona 1983 resin is due to the different test spools used. All the resins passed the test and the results demonstrate that the repair conforms to the design specification and is able to restore the durability of the pipe material.

The long-term pressure test also evaluates the performance of Belzona SuperWrap II against thin-wall defects. Here, the durability of the repair is assessed after 1,000 hours of sustained loading by maintaining the pipe internal pressure at a constant level (test pressures indicated in Table 4). As a result, no cracks, delamination or any other degradation was observed and the test was therefore deemed a pass.

The impact endurance test examines the effect on the repair of a low velocity 5 J impact, simulating a tool drop such as a spanner being dropped on the repair. The objective of this test is to determine the minimum thickness of the repair layer whereexternal impact is concerned. In accordance with ISO 24817 Annex F, an impact of 5 J was applied to the pipe repair by dropping a weight from a height of 1 m, followed by a pressure test. The results showed that there was no difference between the measured and calculated energy release rates, and it was concluded that this level of impact did not affect the integrity of the SuperWrap II repair system.
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Image 6: A Belzona SuperWrap II application before being overcoated with Belzona 5811 (ImmersionGrade) for extra protection

Requirements for Belzona SuperWrap II application

The repair design of Belzona SuperWrap II is determined by strength calculations based on actual defective conditions of pipes in accordance with the ISO/ASME standards, which also take into account factors such as surface preparation method, pipe geometry, environmental conditions, operational/design pressures, etc. The repair is then carried out following the design, but there are certain conditions that must be adhered to during the application.

Firstly, to ensure the quality of the work, all Belzona SuperWrapII installers are required to attend and pass a validated training course. The course includes a practical test (as well as a theory exam), in which participants are asked to repair a pipe spool with a simulated defect, which must then pass a certain pressuretest.

As a strict rule, a compliant repair must always be conducted by trained installers. The ISO/ASME standards defines repair classes from class 1 to class 3. Class 1 is for low specification duties with least critical conditions such as pressure of <2 MPa and temperature of <40°C and since this is for systems that do not relate directly to personnel safety the repair jobs can be handled by installers alone. Class 2 and 3 however involve more critical scenarios, for example higher pressure and temperature conditions as well as systems transporting hazardous fluids; in those cases therefore the work must be supervised by a certified supervisor who has completed a higher level of training.Periodic annual renewal of qualifications is also compulsory for the installers and supervisors to ensure that they maintain and improve their skills after certification.

All the inspection results, including environmental measurements, surface roughness achieved by surface preparation conducted, batch numbers of products used, and resulting repair thickness, are recorded in QA/QC documents of each project. And this will be collected on all projects, including information on who was the installer/supervisor involved. 

After use in service, Belzona SuperWrap II repairs can be revalidated or decommissioned upon reaching its design lifetime, depending on the decision made by the asset owner.

Belzona SuperWrap II repair solution is available worldwide through the network of Belzona International Distributors, and the applications can be carried out by trained and validatedpersonnel from third parties as long as they fulfil the prerequisites. By allowing the asset owner to choose who would carry out the design and also who would apply the wraps on-site (as long as those parties are qualified as per the standard), the operator has the flexibility to appoint the contractors best suited,depending on the specific requirements of a project.


➢ Belzona SuperWrap II is a pipe repair technology based on a composite material consisting of a two-component epoxy resin and a hybrid reinforcing fibre (carbon fibre/glass fibre).
➢ Prequalification tests in accordance with both ISO and ASME standards have shown that Belzona SuperWrap II materials have a high level of mechanical properties and are suitable for the compliant pipe repair.
➢ The composite repair is designed on the basis of engineering strength calculations and is capable of restoring the integrity of damaged pipe materials.
➢ A system of accreditation and registration of installers/supervisors ensures uniform quality of workmanship and high reliability.
➢ Belzona SuperWrap II repair, which complies with the ISO/ASME standards, is a reliable long-term repair solution that contributes to the maintenance management of pipework.


1 ISO 24817:2017, ‘Petroleum, Petrochemical and Natural Gas Industries – Composite Repairs for Pipework – Qualification and Design, Installation, testing and Inspection’
2 ASME PCC-2:2018, ‘Repair of Pressure Equipment and Piping’
3 ALEXANDER, Chris, FRANCINI, Bob, ‘State of the Art Assessment of Composite Systems Used to Repair Transmission Pipelines’, Proceeding of IPC 2006


OHARRIZ, Osmay, ‘Pipelines: The Composite Solutions’, World Pipeline 2016

Yusuke Nishi is a Senior Technical Services Engineer for Belzona Asia Pacific based in Thailand.

Yusuke has been with the company since 2011. He is an experienced professional within the plant maintenance industry specialising in composite repair and protective coatings. He possesses in-depth technical knowledge in various areas of polymeric solutions with a focus on corrosion management and problem solving, gained from over 10 years of experience at Belzona.

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