Construction of the MONACO pipeline: Solving countless challenges together
Varying geological formations, logistical quirks and enormous nominal widths of DN 1200 – the construction of the MONACO long-distance natural gas pipeline in Bavaria, Germany is fraught with challenges. Success relies not only on high-quality products, but also on teamwork between all the companies involved. Peter Westphal, Project Manager at DENYS (the contractor performing the work) and Hans Kahlig, Construction and Coating Inspector at ILF (a pipeline construction consultancy company) share their experiences.
Mr Westphal and Mr Kahlig, what are your roles in the MONACO project?
Peter Westphal: I'm the DENYS project manager for the construction of the MONACO pipeline and I'm responsible for ensuring that everything runs smoothly on the construction site, as well as for realisation of the project, adherence to deadlines and the project finances.
Hans Kahlig: In this project, I monitor the site and inspect the coatings. I check the integrity of the coatings on the weld seams.
My quality assurance checks involve a so-called 'holiday test' and regular peel tests. In a holiday test, voltage is applied to check the weld seam for defects. All weld joint coatings are checked with 25 kV of voltage. This highlights any defects and checks adhesion strength.
What has been your experience of working with DEKOTEC GmbH?
Hans Kahlig: We really enjoy working with DEKOTEC GmbH and its sister company in Germany. We have only had positive experiences – and we've been working with them for twelve years.
Peter Westphal: We've been working with DEKOTEC and its sister company for many years. We value our partnership with the company because of the quality and resilience of its products. We enjoy an excellent partnership, not only because of the training and education provided to our own employees but also because of the support provided before and during a project.
Mr Westphal, how much of this project is DEKOTEC GmbH supplying?
Peter Westphal: DEKOTEC is supplying the entire project, which comes in at just under 40 kilometres of pipeline – running from Burghausen to Inn.
And what are the specific challenges on this site?
Peter Westphal: This project is particularly challenging because of the varying geological formations. Most of the terrain is flat and even, but there are also some very steep slopes.
We also need to pass under rivers and railway lines and over 20 road crossings.
What are the advantages of the BUTYLEN two-tape system for you?
Peter Westphal: The advantage of the BUTYLEN two-tape system is that it's a three-ply tape applied in two layers. The first layer is wrapped directly around the pipe to protect against corrosion, while the second layer provides mechanical protection. The main advantage of this approach is that the tapes fuse together over time to guarantee long-term corrosion protection.
Mr Kahlig and Mr Westphal, what did you enjoy most about this project?
Hans Kahlig (laughs): What I enjoyed most about this project was the legendary Bavarian crusted pork roast washed down with a perfectly poured wheat beer.
Peter Westphal: As I'm from Bavaria, I've very much enjoyed working as a project manager here. It's been like a home game for me.
Thank you for the interview!
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