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Trenchless Pipeline Removal (TPR)
It's an innovative trenchless technology for removing pipeline sections in areas where the open cut method is not possible or not allowed (i.e.: channels with dikes, roads, environmentally protected areas, etc.). The TPR technology uses the waterjet system to carry out a helical cut of the pipeline wall. The TPR equipment is positioned in the shaft at one end of the pipeline that will be removed. A cutting machine is inserted in the underground pipeline section and driven by rods into the pipe hole. The cutting head, equipped with a nozzle (designed up to 6000 bar), rotates during the operation to obtain a helical cut on the entire length of the pipeline; the cutting speed is of about 15 cm/min. Then the cutting head is removed. The pipeline with the helical cut can be pulled out using an HDD rig while the bore is filled with the appropriate material (sand, bentonite mixture, etc.). The TPR design is now completed and the first prototype of the system has been assembled, giving positive on-site test results. In the 2nd quarter of 2013 an experimental program will be carried out to validate the theoretical model and determine the implementation limits of this system.