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Dijon, France – Residents of the Bourroches district in Dijon have been experiencing discoloured water or, “l’eau jaune” flowing from their taps and to remedy the discolouration problem, SUEZ teams from France, Italy and the UK have all joined forces to carry out challenging Ice Pigging works which took place just this week.
Ice Pigging works to clean and clear away any sediment, biofilm and other built up materials that accumulate over time in water pipes. Since its commercialisation in the water sector around 10 years ago, it has become widely adopted as the most cost-effective pipe cleaning solution in many countries around the world and is used in a wide range of industries as a unique pipe cleaning solution.
SUEZ France is responsible for the 1,100km of water and sanitation networks for Dijon and launched the cleaning operation with teams from the UK and Italy.
SUEZ Italia brought their recently acquired Ice Pigging delivery kit and mobile water quality analysis unit while the UK team provided a high capacity ice maker and years of Ice Pigging expertise.
Ice flows through dijon pipes
Ice Pigging is known for its ability to navigate swiftly through pipes with varying diameters, fittings and bends with ease. The composition of an ice pig is an advantage that makes for quicker operations compared to standard pipe cleaning methods where pipe outages can cause major disruption to customers limiting their water supply.
All three SUEZ teams worked together to carry out the operation which involved Ice Pigging vertically downward 15 metres from the reservoir using only 1.5 bar through unlined cast iron pipe.
For this operation it was decided to use a much thinner ice fraction than what is typical of a standard Ice Pigging operation. In lowering the thickness of the ice, cleaning of the pipe was successful and extremely effective with a cascade of brown water discharged at the end of the pipe.
Samples were taken throughout the operation to ensure improvements to the water quality, flow, pressure and turbidity with the mobile water quality analysis unit specifically designed as a monitoring system to support potable water mains cleaning activities.
The first day of the operation was a success with the teams working quickly to restore the water supply with some residents experiencing outages of only 25 minutes.
The second day of operations proved to again be successful with a lot of dirt and sediment discharged from the pipe before the water was restored to normal and put back into service.
In total, one kilometre of pipe was cleaned using Ice Pigging and if the projects continue to be successful, a second pipe cleaning project will be launched.