Nov 2014
Gas Distribution
40mm Serviflex
Nov 2014
Feb 2016
Stephen Tomlinson, Innovation Project Manager
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Network Innovation Allowance
GD - Repair
Gas Distribution Networks
A prototype system has been developed by Radius Systems Ltd for the renewal of 2” nominal diameter house entry pipework installations. Usually servicing multi-occupancy dwelling houses, these pipes are often built into the structure of the building and are difficult to access. A system based on Serviflex technology has been developed that allows insertion solutions to be used to renew the pipe from the supply main to a point in the building that is more easily accessible. This avoids the need to construct new steel pipe installations which are costly, difficult to route and aesthetically unattractive.

The technology has been developed to a prototype stage where fitness for purpose evaluation of the pipe and fittings solutions has been performed giving confidence in the suitability for long term installation in a gas network. As part of the initial assessment of the technology, three installations were conducted at the proof of concept stage to confirm the basic insertion principles using specialist operatives supplied by the manufacturers.

A wider scale trial is now required to assess the suitability for use of the technique on a routine basis by GDN’s. It is proposed that SGN will perform this wider network trial. The outputs of the trial will inform the network of the suitability of the technique, the probable model for operational use and a decision on whether to introduce the use of the system.

Summary of Work Required

In broad terms, the following is an itemised list of the key work streams in the deliverable:

1) Review of the outputs from the proof of concept stage (product approval, early trial experience)

2) Development of a method statement compatible with current Engineering Policy within the network

3) Development of a draft technical standard for Serviflex pipe technology that provides also for a third party peer review of the technique

4) The provision of installation toolkits to be distributed within SGN, a training package for their use and a training day to verify competency

The provision of an agreed number of installation consumable packages at each of the three network locations for field trial use. The project plan allowed 5 months for the field trial stage, ending in July. As only 30% of the required number of field trials have been undertaken, due to lack of suitable opportunities at appropriate sites, an extension to the project is required. The change is beneficial as it will enable the field trials to be completed and provide time for the proper assessment of the equipment which will benefit the accuracy of the project outcome and implementation recommendations. The project costs, objectives and success criteria remain unchanged.

The objective of this project is to prove the suitability of using 40m Serviflex pipe to renew 2” steel on the GB gas network.  The main application that this will provide benefit to is the replacement of the below ground approach mains for Network Risers.  The use of 40mm Serviflex in these riser repair applications will allow the partial repair and refurbishment of existing risers as opposed to the full replacement of them, resulting in time and cost saving to both SGN and the consumer.  It will also allow for these activities to be carried out with less disruption (excavations, lifting floor boards etc) both within and outwith consumers premises.

The following success criteria apply to this project:

  • SGN review and approval of 40mm Serviflex concept history.

  • Completed review of relevant standards and specifications including gap analysis.

  • Development of SGN approved method statement.

  • SGN Approval of third party reviewed technical standard for Serviflex pipe technology.

  • Delivery of 40mm Serviflex kits, training packages and training.

  • Completed field trials with support documentation.

  • Full project reporting.