Terminator of water leakage: stainless steel corrugated water pipeline

The huge urban water supply network will be from the source of water, after the treatment of water plants to thousands of households, without it, life is unimaginable. But on average, more than a quarter of the water produced by water companies is lost in the middle of the way and does not reach the customers.

The main cause of water leakage is the leakage and explosion of old pipes, as well as the loosening or corrosion of pipe fittings. On average, 25-30% of the world’s water is lost during transportation. In Europe, an average of 26% of water is lost, and in the rest of the world, the ratio of non profitable water (NRW) is as high as 70%. In the United States, two-thirds of a $384 million, 20-year public water system investment plan is designated to improve the water supply network system.

What is Non revenue water (NRW)?

Non revenue water (NRW) can be defined as the water produced (or purchased) and transported by water supply enterprises without generating income, which is basically system input minus billing consumption. The UN charged or unlicensed consumption and instrument error account for a small part of NRW, and the largest part of NRW is water loss caused by pipe burst and leakage.

Molybdenum bearing stainless steel is an ideal substitute for galvanized pipe and plastic pipe. It can greatly reduce the number of maintenance and total water leakage loss, especially in the earthquake prone areas with high risk of underground pipeline damage.
The leakage of tap water in the process of transportation is not only a waste, but also a high cost. It requires additional water treatment equipment and more chemicals to process, and more energy to pump water to users. In addition to the unnecessary loss of water resources and the construction of new water collection facilities such as dams and reservoirs, the natural habitat is destroyed. Therefore, the benefit of solving the problem of water leakage is more than saving money.

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People line up to get water from water trucks in Calcutta, India

Durable and flexible water pipes

Replacing old galvanized steel or plastic water pipes can greatly reduce water leakage, especially in the water transmission and distribution pipelines connecting the main water supply pipeline and users, where about 95% of the leakage occurs. Leakage problems are often undetected for months or even years, which means that even a small leak can cause the loss of millions of liters of water.
Replacing old pipes is an obvious solution, but what kind of pipes should be replaced? In order to ensure high quality drinking water and long service life, pipeline materials must have obvious advantages over steel and plastics. Traditional piping connecting the main pipe to the water meter requires numerous elbows and fittings. Joints are susceptible to gasket aging, crustal movement, ground traffic vibration and earthquakes, all of which can cause leakage over time. The stainless steel corrugated pipe does not need joints, which can avoid the hidden danger of leakage. Practice has proved that the possibility of water leakage is reduced by 75 – 80% by using stainless steel corrugated pipes.
3550 14 005 pipe connections - Terminator of water leakage: stainless steel corrugated water pipeline

Stainless steel corrugated pipe JPEG from IMOA

Advantages of molybdenum stainless steel:

  • Durable – the service life of stainless steel bellows can reach 100 years or longer, without replacement or repair.
  • High strength, good ductility – the pipeline can withstand the huge pressure of the surrounding soil and heavy trucks driving on the road, and even under the earthquake, it is “bent first and then bent”. Because of its high strength, both ends of the pipe can be firmly connected.
  • Pipe fittings – stainless steel bellows can be simply bent to fit the installation. The installation is simple, fast and time-saving.
  • Flexibility – a combination of strength and flexibility to protect the pipe even in the event of accidental mechanical damage, such as being hit by an excavator.
  • Corrosion resistance – excellent corrosion resistance and anti-aging properties for various water quality, water treatment chemicals and surrounding soil.
  • Cleanliness – stainless steel is basically inert in water, and the release of alloy components is negligible, so it can ensure the quality of drinking water.
  • Recyclable – stainless steel is 100% recyclable, further reducing the impact on the environment and recovering part of the original cost at the end of its service life.

Tokyo near zero leakage

Like any city, Tokyo consumes a lot of water. In the second half of the 20th century, with the influx of population and industry, the economy of metropolitan areas grew rapidly, and the demand for water increased greatly. Despite the slowdown in demand due to new water-saving technologies, the city’s water demand is still staggering, with more than 1.5 billion cubic meters of water supplied in 2013.
In the earthquake zone, there are more than 2 million connections in the water supply network, the possibility of water leakage is quite large, but the current water leakage rate is only slightly higher than 2%. Where is the secret? It turned out that in the early 1980s, the water sector implemented a plan to reduce water losses, replacing all lead pipes with 316L stainless steel and replacing them with corrugated 316L stainless steel pipes since 1998. They also used anti-seismic ductile iron pipes instead of cast iron main pipes, which enhanced the seismic capacity of water transmission facilities.

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316 stainless steel bellows water supply pipeline installed in Tokyo ©Tokyo Waterworks

Taiwan avoided drought and lack of water

A similar program has been launched in Taipei to replace water pipes and cast iron pipes. In 2013, the water supply of the city was 800 million cubic meters. Its water supply network has about 310000 connections. The plan began in 2003, a year after a severe drought that left Taipei with no water supply for 49 days.
The leakage rate of 450 water meter measuring areas in the city is analyzed. It is found that 40% of the areas have lost half or more water before the water is delivered to consumers. The detailed analysis of maintenance cases shows that although the polybutylene pipeline only accounts for 3% of the pipeline network, it accounts for 28% of all leakage. About 90% of the problems occur in plastic pipes, and most of them (83%) are caused by pipe cracks. Like Tokyo, enhanced leak detection and rapid repair systems have been introduced.
So far, the ongoing plan has replaced 35% of the distribution pipes (various materials) with 316L stainless steel bellows. As a result, water leakage decreased by 10 percentage points, from 27% in 2003 to 17% in 2014. In terms of water volume, Taipei lost more water than Tokyo, with 365 million cubic meters of water lost in 2005. In 2014, the replacement was less than half, but the leakage has been reduced to 219 million cubic meters, a reduction of 146 million cubic meters, thus saving a lot of costs.
More extreme droughts occurred in 2014 than in 2002, with rainfall 13% less than the previous drought. However, since 2003, the water leakage has improved greatly and the water supply has never been interrupted. In fact, despite the reduction in total water delivery, more water has reached the user end.
Water is a basic human need and cannot be replaced by anything else. On average, our daily intake of various forms of water is about four liters, and we use it more in our daily life. Water supply safety is the premise of sustainable development of cities and towns. It is an investment in the future to replace the leakage water pipeline with molybdenum containing stainless steel pipeline, which is also of great economic and environmental significance today.

Source: China Corrugated Pipe Manufacturer – Yaang Pipe Industry Co., Limited (www.steeljrv.com)

(Yaang Pipe Industry is a leading manufacturer and supplier of nickel alloy and stainless steel products, including Super Duplex Stainless Steel Flanges, Stainless Steel Flanges, Stainless Steel Pipe Fittings, Stainless Steel Pipe. Yaang products are widely used in Shipbuilding, Nuclear power, Marine engineering, Petroleum, Chemical, Mining, Sewage treatment, Natural gas and Pressure vessels and other industries.)

If you want to have more information about the article or you want to share your opinion with us, contact us at sales@steeljrv.com

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Terminator of water leakage: stainless steel corrugated water pipeline
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