Czech Republic: GPS-controlled Ploughing
By means of GPS-controlled plough-assisted laying, IFK installed numerous drinking water and sewage pipes in the Czech Republic via trenchless installation. Confined spatial conditions and stipulations for the gradient meant a great degree of precision around the laying process as well as compliance with the ÖNORM EN 12889 standards. These requirements were met by applying GPS-controlled plough installation of SLM® 3.0 Protective Layer pipes, which also enabled a significantly higher laying speed than for open-trench installation.
A Ground-breaking Installation Method
In the context of quite a few special heavy construction projects, IFK GmbH installed SLM® 3.0 Protective Layer pipes with the help of GPS-controlled plough-assisted installation — all of them near Prague. The clients called for compliance with the ÖNORM EN 12889, “Trenchless Construction and Testing of Drains and Sewers”. This standard describes the electronic measurement and precise documentation of the position of the pipeline following installation. GPS-controlled ploughing involves digital recording of all planning data in the plough computer, thus making it possible to monitor and document the location and depth of the new pipeline. The general contractors involved were VCES a.s. for the “Jizery Part A” project, whereas POHL cz, a.s. managed the “Jizery Part C” project and TB BUILDING s.r.o. the “Choustník-Bohemian Chips” project. The commercial and logistic processes were handled via Gerex Liberec, s.r.o., the egeplast distributor in the Czech Republic.
Significantly Faster Laying Speed
The SLM® 3.0 Protective Layer pipes were delivered in dimensions OD 110 mm, OD 180 mm and OD 225 mm — up to OD 180 mm as coiled bundles, and as rods for OD 225 mm. Prior to plough-assisted laying, the pipes had to be laid out along the marked pipe route and underwent electrofusion welding. The SLM® 3.0 drinking water pipes for the BV “Choustnik – Bohemian Chips” project, which had been supplied as rods, were connected using heating element butt welding. After this step, the pipe ends were inserted into the pipe-laying chute of the plough. Coordinates read out from the planning documents and recorded in the plough calculator enabled a very high degree of precision with regard to the location and installation depth of the laid pipelines. This measure allowed for strict adherence to the specified location as well the incline, which in turn ensured a continuous incline between the planned high points (air vent) and low points (outlets). In addition, the current coordinates were documented once per second, meaning that the plan indicated the actual location of the pipes — an important element of site measurement and the plan to be submitted. Coordinate controlled plough-assisted laying also made it possible to install two pipe strings parallel to each other at a precisely defined distance from each other in several segments of the marked out route of the “Jizery Part A” project. Those segments which needed to be realised applying conventional open-trench installation provided an excellent opportunity to compare the respective space requirements and laying speed. When applying open-trench installation, a mere 50 m per day (approx.) could be installed on average: Following excavation of the pipe trench, the pipeline was installed and measured in the trench, which ultimately was refilled and its surface area restored. With GPS-controlled plough-assisted laying, it became possible to lay and measure approx. 1,000 m per day on average. The required working width for plough-assisted laying was 4 m maximum — compared to a minimum of 10 m for open-trench installation.
Protective Layer Pipes Provide Safety
In view of processing and the laying requirements, the SLM® 3.0 Protective Layer pipe was the right choice. Since the pipe was delivered as a coiled bundle even for pipe diameters of OD 180 mm, it could be laid out and welded in no time. Moreover, joints could be reduced to a minimum. GPS-controlled laying of the SLM® 3.0 Protective Layer pipes was completed to the customer’s utmost satisfaction and ensured compliance with the relevant time and quality specifications.
Authors contact details
Tel. +43 676 40 37 052
Tel. +420 602 289 970
Tel. +49 2575 9710 264