June 2014, Vol. 241, No. 6


Polyethylene Gas Pipeline Systems: Designing Out Rapid Crack Propagation

Polyethylene (PE) has revolutionized low-pressure gas distribution pipeline design on a global basis. PE’s combination of flexibility, ease of joining, lack of corrosion, long-term durability and lower installation cost make it the gas transporter/operator’s preferred material. In order to maximize benefits gas transporters continue to push the PE design envelope, using pipe in more demanding applications, such as larger pipe diameters and higher operating pressures. This article looks at the increased risk of rapid crack propagation (RCP), referred to as a “fast brittle fracture,” or by the construction industry as a “linear split” that must

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