A leading independent ‘stress relaxation’ test has determined that the average performance lifetime of some of Trelleborg’s key pipe sealing compounds is in excess of 800 years. Elastocon AB, a global leader in testing stress relaxation in elastomers, found that Trelleborg’s elastomeric compounds remain within the acceptable 50% relaxation threshold significantly longer than rival solutions – more than seven centuries longer, in most cases.
The results were exceptional: Trelleborg’s compounds recorded an estimated performance lifetime of 789- and 928-years. With an average estimated service lifetime, of 841 years Trelleborg far outranks the mean lifetime of the four rival systems tested, which was just 97 years.
Julian West, Product Manager for Trelleborg’s pipe seal operations, says: “A minimum estimated pipe lifetime of 120 years remains the industry norm. However, amid changing climates and increased scrutiny of water usage, the current rate of replacement will require pipeline systems to last in excess of 800 years in some countries. Choosing seals manufactured from high performance compounds designed to last 500 years or more may well become a necessity for network owners in years to come.”
Using ASTM and ISO methodology, Elastocon set up a testing program involving a selection of eight sealing systems currently on the market. These included Trelleborg’s compounds used for the F-601 Power-Lock for plastic sewage and potable water pipes, and the F-165 integrated seal for concrete pipes.
The Elastocon testers exposed the elastomer in the seals to a series of elevated temperatures, which enabled them to deduce the effects of temperature on the stress relaxation rate of the seals. As per the ISO guidelines, a maximum relaxation level of 50% was then set. From here, the testers were able to calculate the service life of each system, based on the number of years the elastic in the seal will take to reach the 50% threshold.