Wed, 05 July, 2023
TWI Technology Fellow, Mike Troughton is due to present at the International Conference on Plastic Materials in Plant Engineering in Munich on 10-11 October.
He will be presenting on the effect of insufficient homogenisation during the extrusion of polyethylene pipes on butt fusion joint integrity.
Carbon black is commonly used to protect polyethylene pipes from UV radiation when they are stored outdoors. However, if the carbon black is not fully mixed with the polyethylene during pipe extrusion, this can lead to windows in the pipe (areas in the pipe where there is no carbon black).
The presence of windows can have a dramatic effect on the integrity of the butt fusion joints in the pipe.
In his presentation, Mike will describe the work carried out at TWI to develop a procedure for quantifying the amount of windows in polyethylene pipe and then determine an acceptable level of windows that does not affect the integrity of the butt fusion joints.
The results of this study provide a simple test that can be carried out by companies that use butt fusion welded polyethylene pipes for applications such as gas and water distribution; chemical, nuclear and desalination plants; and sea outfalls, to check that their pipes will not generate premature failure in the butt fusion joints due to the presence of windows.