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World’s Heaviest Gate Valves Arrive for Nord Stream

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 10/6/2010, Location: Asia

Two of the world’s heaviest gate valves arrived in Greifswald, Germany, for the Nord Stream Pipeline. Four such 102 tonne through-conduit valves were engineered and manufactured in Italy for the Nord Stream consortium by Petrolvalves Srl. The valves will be installed in Germany and Russia at either end of the double 1,224 kilometre natural gas pipeline which the consortium is constructing through the Baltic Sea.

The through-conduit double-expanding gate valves will be installed in front of each of the pipeline inspection gauges (pig) receivers in order to isolate the gas in the pipeline from the pig receiver when it is not in use. The gross dimensions of these massive gate valves are 10.4 metres high by 4.1 metres by 2.6 metres.

The valves were engineered and manufactured by Italy’s Petrolvalves Srl, one of the world’s leading suppliers of industrial valves for the petroleum and petrochemical sectors. They are the heaviest gate valves ever manufactured.

The valves were extensively tested in Italy before being transported to Germany and Russia on trucks specially made for such high loads. Such large components can only be transported at night, and with a police escort.

The complex logistic arrangements to transport the massive 102 tonne valves from Italy to Germany and over land and sea to St. Petersburg have been handled by Saving Shipping and Forwarding Srl, also based in Northern Italy.

Construction of Nord Stream – the most advanced of the new pipelines that Europe will need to meet its future energy requirements – is progressing on schedule and according to plan. Roundabout 450 kilometres of the first pipeline have already been laid in Swedish, Finnish and Russian waters. At the Russian Landfall in Portovaya Bay, Vyborg, and at the German Landfall at Lubmin, near Greifswald, both strings of the pipeline have also already been constructed and pulled ashore.

When completed in 2012, Nord Stream’s double pipeline will be 1,224 kilometres long and comprise 202,000 concrete weight coated steel pipes each 12 metres long and weighing 23 tonnes on average. The Nord Stream Pipeline will transport 55 billion cubic metres (bcm) of natural gas a year to Europe, enough to supply more than 26 million European households.

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