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Stainless steel pressure piping for high rise buildings

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article image The Aurora building.

BRISBANE'S tallest residential tower, The Aurora, will stand at 69 levels and will set an important precedent in the use of stainless steel pressure piping in high rise buildings when the Bovis Lend Lease project is completed in January 2006.

Situated on the corner of Queen, Eagle and Wharf Streets in the Brisbane CBD, The Aurora uses stainless steel pressure piping instead of conventional copper piping to ensure adequate water pressure for each of the 478 two and three bedroom apartments in the $250 million development.

ASSDA member, Blucher Australia , supplied approximately 250m x 108mm OD x 2mm Mapress tube and fittings, 90° and 45° bends, sockets, flange adaptors and tees in grade 316 stainless steel.

The Aurora project is different to conventional installations due to a single metered water supply being provided to a common pump set for both potable and fire fighting services.

The potable supply is then directly pumped to a reservoir at the top of the building, thus eliminating large costs of having to set aside floors for transfer tanks, pumps etc.

The fire service is branched off the potable supply immediately after the pump set and separated with a non-return valve allowing potable supply to continue the 70 storey rise to the top floor gravity feed tank.

The potable water supply is to be an approved system and also able to withstand both the head pressure created by the vertical rise and pressure of emergency back up pumps in the event of a fire, which in this case is 2490kPa.

The Mapress 316 Stainless Steel Press-Fit System was recommended by Mark Tapley of Plumbing Contractor Tapworth and Booth and specified by Hydramellenia, the subsidiary of Brisbane Hydraulic consultants Steve Paul & Partners.

The system is able to withstand a high working pressure of up to 2600kPa or 26Bar. The system can be pressure tested up to 4000kPa or 40Bar.

Blucher Australia is presently proceeding with Standards Australia to obtain MP 52 certification for potable water supply and once obtained, the Mapress System will be the only stainless steel system, complete with tubes and fittings to achieve this certification.

The Mapress Stainless Steel Press-Fit System carries European pressure certification suitable for this particular application and the pressure rating for the system.

No other stainless steel "system" holds an MP 52 certification so the major change was acceptance by Brisbane City Council.

The Mapress Stainless Steel Press-Fit System was chosen for a combination of reasons including longevity, ease of installation and the system's ability to handle high pressure.

As a part of Blucher Australia's guarantee and OH&S requirements, Blücher Australia Technical Manager, Ian Johnson trained Project Manager Mark Tapley, Site Foreman Steve Woods and four other employees involved in The Aurora project in the use of the specialised Hydraulic Press-Fit tool and installation procedures.

Blucher Australia holds stock of all the stainless steel components required to do the installation. Delivery, in conjunction with the good organisation skills of Steve Wood of Tapworth and Booth, was straight forward.

Hydramellenia, the subsidiary of Steve Paul and Partners, is convinced of the benefits and is currently specifying the Mapress system for other projects.

Blucher Australia has already supplied the system to the smaller Metropole Apartments Project, also in Brisbane, and has received inquiries from other consultants who have heard of this project.

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