Aug 05, 2009

HDPE Pipe Implemented in Nuclear Power Plants

Pipe used for safety-related piping for cooling water systems

The Plastics Pipe Institute, Inc. (PPI) recently said that high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe has been given a paramount approval and an official welcome by the nuclear power plant community. Applications include safety-related piping for cooling water systems.

“The implementation of HDPE pipe in nuclear power plants with all the stringent guidelines, regulations, rules and inspection practices that this industry has developed and followed for decades, certainly is a vote of confidence for the integrity and performance of HDPE pipe,” stated Tony Radoszewski, executive director of the PPI.

The PPI and its members worked with the industry and American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) on performance standards, test procedures, fusion processes and other criteria culminating with the inclusion of details in Code Case N-755 for the use of HDPE pipe in nuclear power plants.

“The industry approval came on July 21 when the Nuclear Energy Institute recognized the use of HDPE pipe with a Top Industry Practice award,” Radoszewski said. “It also produced a video that relays news of the groundbreaking decision to implement a new industry-wide standard to use HDPE pipe in all new and existing plants. ‘The Secret is Plastic’ shows how and why Duke Energy‘s Catawba nuclear station in South Carolina and AmerenUE’s Callaway plant in Missouri are now using HDPE pipe to replace the much more costly carbon steel pipe.”

The video can be found at:

Typical applications for HDPE pipe range from municipal water systems to sanitary sewer and force mains, natural gas distribution, storm water systems, radiant heating and residential plumbing.

”The nuclear energy industry reviewed the facts and concluded that HDPE pipe is the best solution for long-term performance and cost-savings, which is aiding the revitalization of that industry,” Radoszewski said. “We urge other industries such as municipal water take a cue from nuclear energy experts.”