Industry News

BASF Coatings supplies the best powder coating solution

Published on 2006-06-15. Author : SpecialChem

Erfurt -- A second 100 - kilometer natural gas pipeline between Eisenach and Jena, both cities in Eastern Germany, has now been put in operation, expanding the existing east-west natural gas transport route. In September 2005, WINGAS GmbH gas company, a joint venture of BASF subsidiary Wintershall AG and the Russian company OAO Gazprom, began the construction of the STEGAL Loop, as the pipeline is called because it runs through Saxony and Thuringia. The journey from a piece of steel to an installed pipeline is a long one, involving a large number of companies and cooperation partners. BASF Coatings, a subsidiary of BASF, supplied Eupec GmbH with the first layer of the three - layer coating, thus contributing to the perfect exterior coating of the pipes, and in turn making the pipeline resistant to corrosion and guaranteeing that it will be functional for many years to come.

BASF Coatings supplies the best powder coating solution

WINGAS saw to it that every part of the project, which cost around 72 million euros, met the highest requirements. BASF Coatings did its part by supplying the highest quality coating material for the pipeline. Since delamination of the exterior insulation could be detected on existing pipelines, Eupec GmbH, polyethylene supplier Basell, and BASF Coatings carried out a test using competing products. "The most important demand the coating needed to meet was its resistance to humidity. That's because it needs to continue to adhere as long as possible while it is under the earth," explains Frank Rau, WINGAS GmbH's Project Engineer for the STEGAL Loop. "That's why we used two trials to test the adhesion of the coating under real conditions that were simulated in the lab," says Rau. Typical signs of aging could be tested by using hot-water immersion and the cathodic corrosion protection test. The result was positive: "BASF Coatings delivered an outstanding performance during the trials. Choosing them and their powder coating was an easy decision," Rau adds.

The tests were carried out as follows: A coated steel panel was immersed in water at 80º Celsius for two months. Then came the key moment: A cross-cut test was carried out to see if the coating could be removed. "With our product, that was impossible," says Patrick Möller, Protective Coatings Business Manager at BASF Coatings. "Our Basepox® Multilayer FBE PE50-1081 turned out to have the highest degree of adhesion," he explains. During the second trial, the cathodic corrosion protection text, the adhesion was good as well. In addition to the water bath, this test also involved placing anodes on the steel panel. For 30 days, electric current was applied. The result of this test was also positive, since in this case, the coating also adhered well. "In previous projects, our cooperation with BASF Coatings was always optimal, thanks especially to the know-how and commitment of the employees and the right range of products that meet our special requirements," says Rau.

Before BASF Coatings' powder paint was applied to the 18-meter-long pipe sections, which have a diameter of one meter, they were first blast-cleaned and then underwent a high-pressure wash. A layer of chrome was first applied to the clean surface, which was then coated with the BASF Coatings primer. Finally, an adhesive and the highly durable plastic polyethylene was applied, and the coating was perfect. The 5,600 finished sections of pipe were then loaded, transported to the construction site, welded together, their insulation tested and a pressure test carried out.

Now the pipeline has an annual capacity of about 17 billion cubic meters of Russian natural gas, more than 50 percent than before. In theory, that's enough to supply six million households with natural gas each year.

BASF : A major international player in coatings

BASF Coatings AG belongs to the global Coatings Division of the BASF Group. In 2005 the Coatings Division achieved world sales of about 2.2 billion euros. The Coatings Division develops, produces and markets a high-quality range of innovative automotive OEM coatings, automotive refinishes and industrial coatings as well as decorative paints, and also the processes needed to apply them. In this business, eco-efficient water-based, powder and high-solids coatings as well as radiation-curable systems play a special part. In Brazil, the company has been successful in the decorative paints market for years and holds the leading position. BASF has a major, global presence in the Coatings sector, with significant market positions in Europe, North America, South America and the Asia/Pacific region, for example with affiliates in Australia, China, India, Japan, and the Philippines.

Source: BASF

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