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Pipe Applications

PipeIf there is any application under 60 deg C and 25 bar; there will be, on balance, no better performing pipe material than UHMWPE.

It’s that simple.

Specifically, our largest success so far has come through the following processes:

  • Dredging
  • Mine Tailings and Concentrate
  • Mineral sands
  • Waste Water and Sewerage
  • Fly ash
  • Slurry

Case Studies

Coal Handling Preparation Plant (CHPP) co-disposal lines:

  • Co-disposal lines carry rock and sediment within a preparation plant. These lines tend to be several hundred metres in length (at least) and the use of HDPE is very common. HDPE provides an easier to install and cheaper alternative than Steel in a process where high wear is expected. Traditional life for a section of pipe consistently being used and properly sized in this application is between 6 months and 2 years.
  • UHMWPE has been used widely, and will immediately multiply that life expectancy by 4. The smaller the rock (particulates), the better UHMWPE will perform.
  • Not only is this a factor of just abrasion resistance, but also UHMWPE’s comparative advantage when taking into account UV degradation; as these lines tend to be above the surface.


Dredging requires the displacement of large amounts of sand, a very aggressive process. Simultaneously, being in the sea or ocean environment means that materials need to be corrosion, erosion and marine growth resistant.

Official wear results as provided and commissioned by Shanghai Dredging Corporation:

  • Displacement of 1.67 million cubic metres of earth and sand at 5 m/s and 15 bar.
  • Resultant wear of UHMWPE wall thickness was 0.7 mm
  • Resultant wear of Steel wall thickness was 3.2 mm
  • Meaning that the lighter weight, completely corrosion free UHMWPE wore 5-6x less under identical conditions when compared to Steel

In addition to this, it is important to note UHMWPE’s surface roughness. It is so smooth that marine growth and barnacles will not grow (0.00022mm), allowing for repeat performances.

Similarly, a thickness change of 3.2 mm in a thinner wall material like steel would result in significant variation of pressure allowances, something that may mean it couldn’t be used again at 15 bar.

Slag (smeltering by-product)

Slag is a "natural" by-product of any ore smelting process. It is basically a mixture of metal oxides and silicon dioxides. Slag is the bain of maintenance engineers at smelters for several reasons: firstly it is extremely abrasive, secondly it can be significantly corrosive, and finally it tends to clump together on the wall of most pipe materials (scaling) – meaning a cleaning process has to be undertaken regularly.

UHMWPE is the perfect solution.

Not only is UHMWPE a great balance between corrosion and abrasion resistance, but it is also anti-scaling. The result being larger flows for longer times, and greatly reduced maintenance cycles.

What makes UHMWPE anti-scaling is a mixture of its self-lubricating properties and surface roughness. The oxides cannot get enough grip to clump.

** These cases are just a miniscule portion of the kinds of processes that UHMWPE can optimise for any site, please inquire with us regarding your specific application and we can provide further details of what UHMWPE can do.

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