New standard guides use of HDPE to protect buried cables

By Catherine Kavanaugh
Staff Reporter

Published: September 6, 2013 1:41 pm ET
Updated: September 6, 2013 1:44 pm ET

Image By: Plastics Pipe Institute HDPE conduit

Related to this story

Topics Construction, Public Policy, Pipe/Profile/Tubing, Extrusion

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is helping governments and businesses get more miles out of the protective properties of plastic for electrical and fiber optic cable systems.

The non-profit group published a new standard about using high density polyethylene conduit to shield the power and telecommunication cables being buried along the sides of U.S. highways.

AASHTO engineers worked with the Plastics Pipe Institute, Inc. (PPI) to come up with the specifications and requirements for HDPE conduit to protect the nation's power grid and information highway.

The document, which covers material, workmanship and performance requirements, will be a guide for power applications, such as highway and airport lighting, electrical distribution and transmission lines. Communication applications include Intelligent Highway Systems, closed-circuit TV, and fiber optic cables that run along rights of way. Other applications include pipeline control, positive train control technology, and traffic control and monitoring.

The standard addresses typical installation methods, such as trenching, plowing and horizontal directional drilling.

"This document was the first step in adapting requirements for HDPE conduit that were originally based on the properties of PVC conduit," PPI Executive Director Tony Radoszewski said in a statement.

In addition to being a well-suited as a protective pathway for telecommunication and power cables, HDPE's inherent properties make it ideal for infrastructure and installation. It is resistant to chemicals and stress cracks. It is flexible, strong and can be coiled. And, it can be buried with minimal impact on traffic and the surrounding area.

Also, HDPE conduit is available in larger diameters above six inches for installations requiring multiple inner ducts to run through one service pathway.

The document about its use is formally called "Standard Practice for Solid Wall High-Density Polyethylene Conduit for Non-Pressure Applications Used for the Protection of Power and Telecommunications Cables," or "Standard Practice R 63," for short.

This new document makes it possible to standardize material specifications and insure compliance with other rules governing electrical and fiber optic cable systems, according to Radoszewski,

"This project exemplifies the collaborative nature of the PPI to benefit the industry, communities and citizens by making available proven and effective products which have been vetted by well-respected organizations such as AASHTO," he said in a statement.

PPI is the major trade association representing all segments of the plastic pipe industry. In addition to Radoszewski , participating members from the group included Jennifer Marin of Endot Industries, Inc.; Sarah Patterson, who was with Dow Chemical and is now PPI's technical director; Tom Stewart of the Dura-Line Corporation; and George Zagorsk of, Blue Diamond Industries. Industry consultant Jim Goddard and Bill Bailey of the Virginia Department of Transportation worked on the document as well. Bailey also is chairman of AASHTO's technical section on flexible pipe.

The standard can be found at the AASHTO website: http://transportation.org.


Comments

New standard guides use of HDPE to protect buried cables

By Catherine Kavanaugh
Staff Reporter

Published: September 6, 2013 1:41 pm ET
Updated: September 6, 2013 1:44 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Study: 100 times less plastic than expected polluting ocean surface

July 23, 2014 3:46 pm ET

There's as much as 100 times less plastic floating on surface of the world's oceans than would be expected given the mushrooming use of the material...    More

Image

Molder provides quality parts and quality work for disabled adults

July 23, 2014 2:40 pm ET

Coarc Manufacturing Inc. does injection molding, assembly and all of the work of traditional manufacturer, but it also serves as part of Coarc Inc. a ...    More

Image

Intek investing $1 million to expand capacity

July 23, 2014 1:59 pm ET

Custom profile extruder Intek Plastics Inc. has invested more than $1 million to expand its production capacity by 17 percent.    More

OSHA probes alleged asthma link to Lear's Selma, Ala., plant

July 23, 2014 11:58 am ET

U.S. foam manufacturer Renosol Seating LLC is being investigated following allegations its workers are at risk of asthma from TDI exposure at its...    More

Image

Plastics industry blasted for stance in green building debate

July 22, 2014 2:45 pm ET

The plastics industry has taken high-profile stance in the debate over green building standards. The result, today at least, is that it's getting some...    More

Market Reports

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Market Review & Outlook 2014

This special report from Plastics News examines the North American plastics recycling industry and provides insight into indicators that impact market viability, including Resin pricing trends for virgin and recycled market material and historical Resin production trends for post- consumer and industrial waste.

Learn more

Shale Gas Market - Analysis of North American Region

This report highlights the impact of shale-based natural gas on the North American plastics market and features an in-depth analysis of production trends in the United States during 2013 and a forecast for 2014 and beyond.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events