Gas pipeline construction is standardized. The first step is the opening of the “track”: a strip of 20 meters wide is cleared along the entire track. Then, the ditch is built and the parade of pipes is assembled. Bending of pipes is done along the route. The next step is the soldier. Then, inspection: the defects are corrected, the pipe line is finally lowered into the trench, the well is closed, the hydrostatic test and internal inspection of the pipe are carried out. Each section of pipe entering the ditch is 900 to 1,200 meters long.
Flat plates for the production of pipes were imported from Brazil, from the company Minas Gerais (Uciminas) Steel MillsOne of the largest steel producers in Latin America.
Welded pipes were manufactured in the company Denaris Ciad (Dexind), Valentín Alsina, at the Lanús party. From there they were developed 14 thousand 14 ton truck trips. Each journey lasted 16 hours along National Route 5 and Desert Route.
The lack of infrastructure in the desert forced companies to set up labor camps. Five modular “villages” With all services for home 4,900 direct jobs. The day started at seven in the morning and ended at seven in the evening.
A consortium formed by Techint, from Paolo RoccaAnd SACDEof Marcelo Mindlin (Bamba energy), 445 km between Tradayen and Doblas in La Pampa. Company BTUof Carlos Muntin, captured the rest of the territory from the town of Makachin (La Pampa) to Sallicule. The tender includes complementary works, Two short pipes And A compression plant Still under construction. Additionally, the second section of the GBNK gas pipeline from Salliculo in Santa Fe to San Geronimo has yet to be tendered.
Companies moved to the desert Over 1,200 pieces of equipment and machinery. The gas pipeline carries optical fiber along the entire route (to be installed) to help monitor its operation. It has 17 Check and safety valvesCompression plants, scraper plants for pipeline cleaning and other surface facilities for gas flow metering, odorization and pressure regulation.
Scheduling expires on time
“Two major challenges were overcome: logistics, pipelines and valves, workers and specialized equipment for the work, and the completion time. Commissioning GPNK established a new milestone worldwide in gas pipeline construction,” he said. Letter p Augustine KeresChairman of the State Corporation Argentina Energy (Enerza)who was the contractor for the work.
Former President Maurizio Macri He announced in the last semester of his term, 2019, but he did not tender it. Government of Alberto FernandezAfter an epidemic caused a decline in production at Vaca Muerta, Enarza and appointed YPF In charge of the project and the international tender was issued on June 3, 2022. Specifications have established that work should be completed by June 20, 2023.
Days after the tender was released, Russia invaded Ukraine and caused a global spike in fuel prices, and some key players in the sector were unable to participate in the tender.
“The most important thing about this gas pipeline project is to think, plan and anticipate every detail before starting. The previous work was the key to accomplishing the objective: we had an A, B and C plan for every maneuver,” he explained. Letter B Carlos ColettoThe manager of SACDE’s gas and oil business division is an engineer who has already participated in the construction of at least 6,000 kilometers of gas pipelines in Central and South American countries.
For his part, Alejandro Cardonemanager of the GPNK project of the Sacde-Techint joint venture, an engineer who has been building oil and gas pipelines around the world for 30 years, described: “It is a huge effort to prepare equipment and human resources. For example, before going to the field, we trained more than 70 pipelayer operators (or We have set up a training center. Page loading), because there are not enough of them in the country”. Machines Page loading They are specific and necessary for replacing sections of welded pipes in the trench.
“In 30 years of working in the industry, talking to colleagues, we don’t have memories of another project like this because of the amount of production and time spent. Compared to some Saudi Arabian projects in the last 30 years, GPNK is on par with the best works. “I worked on a similar challenge in Ecuador, building the OCP oil pipeline through the mountains from the jungle to the Pacific,” Cardone said.
“The planning and commitment of all contractors and the state is important, and we must highlight the maturity of the entire supply chain of the oil and gas sector in Argentina,” he told this portal. Carlos Damian MundineDirector of BTU, the construction company that built section 3 from Macachín to Salliqueló.
Formula 1 welding, Turks and earthquakes
The consortium of SACDE and Techint Ingeniería y Construcciones established two twin-joint plants -one in each section of the 440 kilometers they were responsible for-. There, welding was done to convert 12 meter pipes into 24 meter pipe.
Then, for the first time in the country, an automatic welding system was used, which was installed on the gas pipeline route – next to the trench-, speeding up the work: 24 meters of pipes arrived there and were automatically welded. with a team commanded by Turkish experts. Each union is verified by an ultrasound system.
A detail: SACDE closed a contract with an American company for an automatic welding system CRC-EvansBefore assigning the work. “The automatic welding system is a Ferrari and the Turkish welders are Formula 1 drivers. This allowed us to save welding material and work and to achieve record times”, Coletto explained: “Now, our company has bought this equipment and is training Argentinian welders specialized in automatic systems”.
Amidst the soldiering, the Turkish experts experienced an unimaginable agony that put the camp and the entire project in jeopardy: news traveled around the world about the earthquake in Turkey and Syria last February. The task force was receiving reports of injured or missing relatives or their collapsed houses. There was a meeting of the whole group to consider whether they would return to their country, but they decided to stay.
What’s coming: Complementary jobs
In addition to the area to be opened, the work is complemented by the expansion of the NEUBA II gas pipeline at the heights of Artogi in Carlos Cáceres. There are 36 inch pipe is 29 kilometers Will open in September.
There is a gas pipeline that starts in the city of Mercedes and reaches the city of Kartales in the Tigray district 30 inch pipe 80 km. Together with the Mercedes compression plant, they will come on stream in the last quarter of this year.
The secondary pipeline is the Mercedes-Cartales gas pipeline in the province of Buenos Aires. 73 kilometers To connect the transportation network operated by TGS to Gran Rosario. This is the meeting point with the system operated by TGN. The purpose of this small gas pipeline is to interconnect the two transport systems, North and South. The Mercedes-Cardales gas pipeline will be key to the operation of the electricity system during the summer.
“Introvert. Thinker. Problem solver. Evil beer specialist. Prone to fits of apathy. Social media expert. Award-winning food fanatic.”