Hunter Water Debuts New Trenchless Tech

Feb 22, 2022

Hunter Water is debuting an innovative new ‘keyhole’ technology for restoring damaged or degraded pipes in the Lower Hunter community.

Hunter Water crews are using the European technology on four projects around the region to create an internal lining within the degraded pipes, or as the utility describes it, a ‘pipe within a pipe’. The structural liner is ideal in sensitive and difficult-to-access areas, and has been used to extend the life of Hunter eWater’s mains while minimising disruption to the community.

Hunter Water managing director Darren Cleary said the organisation is always improving how it accesses and manages the condition of infrastructure across its network of more than 10,000 km of water and sewer mains. “We devote millions of dollars every year to replace or improve the pipes throughout the network as part of the $685 million we are investing in our capital works program over the four years to 2024,” said Cleary.

“While condition assessment of any underground assets is not a perfect science, it is evolving with technological advancements, and we are progressively trialling smart sensors and advanced analytical programs to help our ability to prioritise our investment.” Lining technology is a less invasive, trenchless method for breathing life into new pipes.

“We can line a specific section of pipe using access pits, instead of digging a trench all the way along the length of the pipe. In some ways, it could be likened to keyhole surgery,” said Cleary.

Hunter Water has used the technology to complete several projects throughout Lake Macquarie. A water main under William Street in Terelba is now back online, while in Cardiff, crews have completed rehabilitation of a water main under Macquarie Road Works to remediate and reline a water main in Argenton have also recently been completed while a water main relining in Glendale is scheduled to start soon.

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