Source: Pipelines International
Steel pipe manufacturer Tuberias Procarsa has produced its first large diameter spiral pipe after putting a Schuler-manufactured plant into operation.
Experts currently estimate that more than 10,000 km of pipeline will be laid each year in North America by 2020, most of it spiral pipes.
The offline spiral pipe plant can produce large-diameter pipes with a diameter of 508 to 2,235 millimeters (20 to 88 inches) and a length of 12 to 24.4 meters. The raw material up to 25.4 millimeter-thick sheet metal band made of high-quality steel (up to X100) comes on a hot rolled coil (HRC). The spiral mill forms the diameter and welds the spiral pipe within the first step by tack welding. In a further process, the final pipes will be weld by several final welding stands with a submerged arc welding process.
An innovation from Schuler is the integrated coil preparation stand. It ensures short changeover times, high occupational safety and an exact 90-degree cut of the beginning of the band. A crane transfer is no longer necessary. All relevant work steps on the spiral mill are automated: settings are no longer made manually; instead, setting is done directly on the well-organized control panel and implemented by servo motors. This results in an energy savings of up to 30 percent and short changeover times.
At a length of 285 meters, the pipe plant also includes various equipment for inspecting the large-diameter pipes in accordance with the API 5L standard. Ultrasonics, X-rays and water pressure stands are used here. The production capacity of Tuberías Procarsa will be increased by 200,000 tons a year thanks to the Schuler system.