Kvaerner Construction has completed constructing and commissioning new pipelines to carry steam from a power plant to a soda ash production plant in Northwich.
The twin 50cm steam inter-connector main and associated 15cm condensate return pipes extend five kilometres under a river, across a disused salt mine and over a railway line.
The cross-country route takes the pipes under the River Weaver for 86 metres in a 2.1-metre wide tunnel constructed 20 metres below the riverbed. They cross roads, other rivers and railway lines on five separate structures with a total length of more than 500 metres including a 75-metre single span bridge which takes them over the Altrincham to Chester railway line. Pipe-jacked steel sleeves take the pipes across three roads.
To reduce the impact the pipes have on local communities in Winnington and Lostock in the north of Northwich, enabling works for a comprehensive landscaping scheme has also been carried out by Kvaerner Construction, while the pipes are clad in green in sensitive areas of the route.
Designed by Kvaerner Construction’s sister company, Kvaerner Process, they are capable of carrying up to 140 tonnes of steam an hour at temperatures of up to 400oC.
Kvaerner Construction’s project manager, Gordon Gray, said: “We have used our civil engineering expertise together with our close relationship with sister company Kvaerner Process and Powergen to ensure that this challenging and quite unique project has been successfully completed.”
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