Articles & Case Studies

Borealis’ BorSafe™ PE100 pipes deliver disruption-free water supply to Sicilian airport

Posted: Tuesday 3rd November 2009

Produced by Borealis, a leading provider of innovative, value creating plastics solutions, BorSafe™ HE3490-LS was selected for the infrastructure redesign at Palermo International Airport on the island of Sicily. As well as giving the required performance, the material was able to deliver significant savings on installation costs and time.

The ‘Falcone e Borsellino’ Airport is one of Italy’s busiest airports, currently handling in excess of 4.5 million passengers a year – and this number is projected to double by 2015. To prepare for this massive increase in throughput, the airport is undergoing extensive expansion and upgrading of services and facilities. However, the expansion had to be achieved through the redesigning of infrastructure within the pre-existing airport boundaries.

With the upscaling of facilities within the same limited space, maintenance becomes more difficult, more expensive and more disruptive to airport operations and therefore has to be minimized – so systems must perform better and last longer.

In addition to expanding the drinking water distribution system, there was also a need to replace the old pipes of the existing system. As this was installed more than 40 years ago, the steel water pipes had corroded and become increasingly unreliable through leakages which required constant maintenance. New pipes had to be corrosion resistant and able to provide for a long leak-free in-service life, to avoid future disruptions to airport services.

To satisfy these criteria, Carini Plast supplied its TURBO PEAD PE100 material based on Borealis’ BorSafe HE3490-LS high density PE for the installation of 7,500 metres of OD (outside diameter) 200 mm, PN 25 pipe.

BorSafe HE3490-LS established a solid performance track record in water distribution projects, in a broad range of environments and types of sub-soil conditions across Europe. An important reason for this choice was the flexibility of BorSafe HE3490-LS. This made it possible to bend the pipe around obstacles and other buried utilities without needing to use mechanical joints, thereby significantly reducing a primary source of leaks.

“The use of Butt Fusion welded joints helped to avoid the need for anchorage blocks, which are often difficult to install in facilities such as airports, because of their services-crowded underground environment. Being able to eliminate them has saved both laying-time and costs.” says Clemente Gaspare from MA.DI. Costruzioni. “BorSafe LS PE100 pipes meet the needs of today’s stringent environmental policies and practices and will perform reliably over many years, with little or no maintenance. Borealis’ role in the development of a new drinking water delivery system is a foundation step in helping to prepare Palermo International Airport to fulfill its potential as a high growth hub in European commercial aviation.”




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