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Insulation for Poland's Longest Tunnel

S3 Expressway, Poland
8 Months
Application: Frost protection

Collaboration between Thermaflex and PORR Group in the TS-26 Project

The TS-26 tunnel, 2300 kilometers, is one of the longest tunnels in Poland, a crucial component of the S3 expressway in Poland. Serving as a vital link between the Baltic Sea and the Czech Republic along Poland’s western border, the tunnel plays a pivotal role in enhancing regional connectivity and promoting economic growth. It consists of two main aisles for vehicles, eight transverse emergency passages, and one central emergency passage. It was excavated using NATM technology, which is based on using the self-supporting rock mass as the main structural element. The tunnel is built under the expertise of the renowned construction consortium PORR and PORR Bau, their tasks include waterproofing, reinforcement, and concreting of the abutments and vaults. As planned, the concreting of the final structure was completed in May 2023.

Project Process

Thermaflex solutions are being used to provide frost protection for the fire protection system made of cast iron pipes. In total, 6000 meters of pipe insulation and 4200 square meters of ThermaSmart PRO sheet will be installed. The risk of freezing increases due to lack of water flow, so heating cables are installed on the pipes before installing the ThermaSmart PRO sheet and polyurethane slates. The key success factor was the ability to combine polyethylene (PE) and polyurethane (PU) material in a non-standard way to insulate the cast iron pipe, the total pipe insulation thickness could therefore be thicker than standard. Using the flexible ThermaSmart PRO sheet allowed the shape to match the external diameter of the pipes, its fire retardance property and low lambda value are perfect for this special task.

“The technical solution provided by Thermaflex meets all requirements. More importantly for such a complex project, on-time product delivery ensured that the contractor could carry out the installation work smoothly. In addition, Thermaflex provided training and support for the contractor directly on the tunnel construction site, enabling smooth installation to complete this part of the project on schedule.” explains Wojciech Nowak, Deputy Contract Director for tunnel equipment, PORR S.A.

Goals

Thermaflex was tasked to provide highly professional insulation solutions for the tunnel. One of the challenges was to provide a non-standard solution for the insulation of the hydrant pipeline, which should be protected against freezing, the insulation layer needs to be resistant to potential mechanical damage.

Results

The successful implementation of Thermaflex’s insulation solutions significantly contributed to the progress of the TS-26 tunnel project, with an expected completion by the first half of 2024. The robust insulation system not only ensured the protection of the pipeline network but also set a new standard for similar infrastructure projects in challenging environments.

"We are particularly pleased with the reliability of delivery, flexibility and excellent contact with Thermaflex representatives, which enabled the work to be carried out smoothly."

Wojciech NowakDeputy Contract Director for tunnel equipment, PORR S.A.

Additional Info

Find out more details about this project

PORR S.A. (Constructor)

Thermaflex Project Responsible: Lech Skomorowski​

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