An expanded range of inflatable pipe stoppers for maintenance, testing and emergency tasks is being introduced to Australia by industrial actuation and isolation specialists Air Springs Supply.
The easily transported and reusable Pronal stoppers are produced by elastomer products specialists Pronal , the company that produced the enormously strong inflatable bags used to lift sections of the liner Titanic from nearly four kilometres deep in the Atlantic.
The multi-sized stoppers – in an expanded range spanning pipes from 45-2115mm diameter in stock sizes and up to 3000mm for customised types - are typically used to carry out sealing tests and maintenance work on municipal and industrial water and waste water pipelines.
They are also applied to prevent accidental pollution such as spilling of toxic product, thus preventing the flow of toxic fluids into drainage networks or the surrounding environment, says Air Springs Supply General Manager Mr Simon Agar.
“The tremendous expansion of infrastructure projects in recent years – particularly water, waste water and desalination plants – has led to expanding demand for stoppers from both the industrial and the municipal markets. Our ranges are being expanded in response to the growing need for stoppers that are – easy and quick to set up, perfectly sealed, totally watertight and safe to use.
The versatility of the material used and the production method (customized dilatability) means Pronal inflatable stoppers are suitable for all types of pipelines including concrete, cast iron, steel, stainless steel and PVC, he says. ”They are extremely strong and durable in service, being hot vulcanized in a mould and Kevlar reinforced, giving outstand service life.”
“Naturally (as with any rubber-based product) direct or prolonged exposure to petroleum-based products is not recommended, but the plugs are widely used in municipal water and waste water, resource, utility and heavy industrial situations for testing and emergency applications.
“Inflated at the specified pressure and with a back-pressure of up to 1 bar for standard types (10m water column), each stopper can be used within a range of pipe diameters. For example, a range of just four stoppers is needed to span the 100-1200mm diameter pipe sizes.
Stopper types include:
- Vari plugs 45-1500mm with blank stopper, bypass for watertightness tests; and rod for mini pipes
- Uni-Plug collapsible pipe stoppers from 20-3000mm that compactly fit around obstacles, corners and into previously inaccessible areas of surface, underground and underwater pipelines.
- Pollu-Plug and anti pollution stoppers permanently fitted in stormwater and sewerage lines ready for rapid inflation by remote triggering as soon as an emergency arises in industrial, civil and municipal applications. Available in stock sizes to seal pipe diameters from 805-2115mm – with larger sizes custom fabricated – the deflated stopper is designed to allow normal non-polluted effluents or water to pass through the pipe when the stopper is uninflated.