Thursday, May 30, 2024
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Auckland Airport builds resilient infrastructure with fuel pipeline

The hard work has started below the surface to create a more resilient fuel network supporting airfield developments at Auckland Airport.

The first lengths of new pipeline that will run fuel throughout the airfield have been put into a 4m deep trench, with steps and shields to secure the sides.

Around the airfield, there is 4.4km of pipeline which currently pumps up to 14,300 litres of fuel per minute to 22 different aircraft stands, enough to fill the petrol tanks of 240 average cars.

André Lovatt, general manager airport development and delivery, says the pipeline development is designed to cater for future airfield developments and anticipated growth, including the new Domestic Jet Facility.

"Auckland Airport is at a really interesting time in its history with more than 200 projects to take place over the next decade to create Auckland’s airport of the future. The pipeline development is just one of those projects.

"Throughout this complex project, we’re hopping ahead – area by area – to lay the lengths. All of which has to be done while maintaining fuel supply throughout the airport facility."

Andre says laying the new pipeline was a key component in developing resilient infrastructure for the airport’s future growth.

Laying the pipeline is an intricate process, with on-site contractors closely following airport plans mapping out existing underground utilities.

"The team on the ground have to maintain facilities as they go. So existing water pipes and electrical lines are protected while the new pipeline is put in."

Once the new pipeline is laid and up and running, the existing line will be decommissioned. The imported 12 metre-long sections of pipeline arrived in August with the final parts joined on site. Half-a-metre-wide, the pipeline is made of steel, with protective coating around the outside to prevent corrosion underground.

The pipeline work advances alongside other key airport projects such as the Northern Network roading system; the new arrivals area; the airfield expansion; the multi-storey carpark and the DJF – a project which is currently in design

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