Since its foundation in 1938, the Iplex modus operandi has been solving Australia’s pipeline industry challenges, delivering future focused products and solutions with demonstrated long-term customer value. Today, the company is a one-stop shop for large scale pipeline projects and has a specialist service in project delivery on major pipeline infrastructure projects.
The team can offer an end-to-end service from design phase through to manufacturing, quality certifications, logistics and delivery management as well as provide expert installation advice.
Project delivery expertise
Iplex’s project delivery team handles high volumes with complex delivery requirements under tight time constraints. Mark Brunning is the Manager of Project Delivery and regularly coordinates large daily volumes on projects backed by expert project knowledge.
“The team individually tailors a solution for every project. Each project has a specially selected team with high skill and diversity – everybody brings a different skillset from technical product knowledge, engineering, manufacturing to expert supply management knowledge,” says Mr Brunning.
To bring all elements of a project together requires strong internal and customer relationships, and communication is key. The Iplex Project Delivery team has experience in many large-scale water and sewer projects, one example being the delivery of the Haughton Pipeline Duplication Project for the Townsville City Council.
Funded by the Queensland Government, the $215 million project involved the duplication of an existing pipeline to provide the town with a backup supply from the Burdekin Water Supply Scheme. Iplex was awarded the tender for the supply of 36 km of DN1800 FLOWTITE® glass reinforced pipe (GRP), engineered to provide up to 234 ML of water per day into the Ross River Dam.
FLOWTITE GRP was the preferred medium for its superior properties and material strength. Glass reinforced plastic (GRP) is resistant to chemical attack and can be installed in ground conditions such as acid sulphate soils or saline ground conditions that are detrimental to metal and concrete. You don’t have to use special linings or wrap the pipe in plastic sleeving; GRP products have a resistant resin barrier through all the layers of glass and sand, so the whole wall is protected.
To meet the significant project delivery requirements, Iplex chartered six transport ships from Adelaide to Townsville. Each vessel carried 500 lengths of 13 GRP with a diameter of 1,800 mm – that’s over 6 km of pipe on each vessel. On arrival in Townsville, the team was able to discharge each vessel within 72 hours, safely transferring each pipe onto a single B-Double for transport to a specially secured laydown facility.
Iplex’s end-to-end capabilities ensured the project was delivered successfully, on time and on budget. One of the key ingredients for the success of the project was communication.
“There’s always a single point of contact for the customer,” says Mr Brunning.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s an engineering question, a supply enquiry, a warranty question, a question around paperwork for the Manufacturers Data Reports (MDR) – the client only needs to know one person in the business, and they’ll get all their answers. This is what sets Iplex apart from others.”
From the outset, the Iplex Project Delivery team will engage with the customer to ensure a clear understanding of their requirements, goals and timelines they want to achieve. The team is also committed to ensuring onsite safety and working collaboratively with the customer across product and safety requirements.
Product Marketing & Training Manager Nathan Swaffer says providing onsite support is one of Iplex’s core offerings for large-scale projects.
“An important component we offer is site presentations to help with the installation process. It’s not formal training, but it is our technical staff onsite helping the contractors to get it right the first time.”
Depending on the product to be installed, Iplex provides an installer presentation to guide contractors on the unique features of the product and how to correctly install it, whether it is cutting, joining, bedding, or correct handling. A Certificate of Attendance is issued to ensure contractors are aware of best practice installation methods.
On larger scale projects where staff rotations are commonplace, Iplex continually offers refresher training to support client safety and results – it’s all part of the service. Iplex offers a wide range of products suited to large-scale pipeline projects, as well as design guidance and support through the sales engineering team.
The best possible product solutions for your project
Iplex offers a wide range of products that are suited to large scale pipeline projects. Iplex Head of Sales Shaun O’Brien says the company works with its clients to give them the best possible solutions for their project, whether it is polyethelene, PVC, GRP or ductile iron.
Iplex has a range of polyethylene systems sold under the Poliplex® brand, which are manufactured and controlled within Iplex facilities and can be made in sizes up to 2 m in diameter. Poliplex pipes are used to convey all types of liquids and gases for above and below ground applications.
For PVC, Iplex has a wide range of technologies suitable for major supply trunk and reticulations mains, industrial process pipelines and irrigation systems. Iplex’s Rhino® PVC-M for pressure pipes incorporates the advancements of modified PVC technology, whereas Apollo® PVC-O, a dual-patented technology, offers an exceptionally tough, high-performance thermoplastic. This has greatly enhanced physical characteristics including an increased hydraulic performance capacity due to its exceptionally smooth and enlarged bore.
Iplex has always been an innovator in terms of introducing new materials to the Australian market. In fact, it was the first company to introduce large bore GRP pipes for water and sewer.
Michael Lancuba is the Product Manager for Engineered Products at Iplex.
“Iplex were the pioneers in offering a competitive alternative to conventional clay, concrete and steel pipes. In 2006 we became partners with RPC Pipe Systems and introduced FLOWTITE GRP pipe systems in Australia: an advanced GRP technology that gave our customers more options for large projects,” says Mr Lancuba.
“The FLOWTITE range offers flexibility in design and installation, from standard to non-standard pipes and fittings, and we can also custom design and manufacture to the required specification.”
FLOWTITE GRP pipes can be made in a range of standard pressure classes, stiffness classes and lengths. As such, the product can be engineered to meet the clients’ requirements.
FLOWTITE GRP is a composite pipe using continuously wound glass fibres, sand as a filler and thermosetting resins as a corrosion barrier. Australian made FLOWTITE has been used on a number of high-profile, large-scale projects, including the Haughton project, the Burgowan to Takura Water Main upgrade for the Fraser Coast and the Belconnen Truck Sewer project in Canberra.
“We’ve supplied a lot of projects with GRP pipes with diameters up to 2 m, but the product can actually be supplied up to 3 m. It’s not a commodity product, it’s a specialised fully engineered product which we can make to the required specification,” says Mr Lancuba.
Iplex offers GRP piping with superior strength and hydraulic properties, as well as the specialised personnel to see the project through to delivery. The company delivers project driven solutions through proven methods with best results from end to end.
For more information visit the Iplex website.