HOBAS XL Diameter Hydropower Line in the Apennins of Reggio Emilia, IT

Project ID: [00004993]
Installation:Open Trench
Total Length [m]:380
Nominal Diameter DN [mm]3000
Nominal Pressure PN [bar]2
Nominal Stiffness SN [N/m2]10000

End of 2012, some businessmen of the Italian region Reggio Emilia were rewarded for their tenacity in a long and complex process: The building of a new hydropower plant at the Secchia River in the municipality of Castellarano has been approved, representing a significant benefit to the region’s environment. The close interplay of three HOBAS Organizations significantly contributed to the great success of this project in the Apennines of Reggio Emilia. The initial idea of the Engineering Office Adelio Pagotto for the hydropower penstock dates back to 2004 and involved a concrete channel combined with a short steel pipeline. In subsequent stages of refinement, the idea of a concrete channel was abandoned and a steel pipeline for the entire length of 380 m was considered instead. In order to decrease the water flow velocity and reduce head losses, the pipeline was supposed to have a diameter of more than 3 m. The pipes’ durability should be ensured by means of a cathodic corrosion protection system. If unprotected, steel corrodes very rapidly, especially when it is buried and in contact with water. However, after a thorough analysis and numerous meetings with owners of hydroelectric power plants, both the client and the designer chose to switch from steel to HOBAS CC-GRP Pipes for a variety of reasons. HOBAS Pipes feature superior hydraulic performance and offer decisive economic benefits due to fast installation and minimal maintenance. The HOBAS FW Couplings allow for the pipes to be easily connected and are also flexible enough to compensate for some soil settlement. Since GRP is non-conductive and therefore also non-corrosive and highly durable, HOBAS Pipes do not need any cathodic corrosion protection either. The installation of the pipeline started at the beginning of 2013. HOBAS Pipes proved their worth right away: Apart from the excavation works, which took rather long due to the size of the trench and hard soil, the installation of each 6-m-long DN 3000 pipe took less than 30 minutes! The curved route of the pipeline was realized without special fittings but by angular deflection in the couplings. For sections with particularly small radii, HOBAS supplied pipes with an angular cut end. HOBAS Experts provided the installation team with valuable support and assistance. The works have been successfully completed and the hydropower plant was put into operation end of May 2013. The installation of the penstock went smoothly, not least thanks to the global pool of expertise of the HOBAS Group, which ensures that the necessary know-how and resources are supplied in a way that best serves the customer’s demands. At the hydropower plant Castellarano, the interplay of HOBAS Italy, HOBAS Austria and HOBAS Poland stated a good example of this efficient network.