Polyethylene (PE) has been used in fuel gas distribution piping systems since the late 1950's. These tough,
durable piping products offer tremendous advantages to the gas piping engineer for the design and installation of a
highly cost-effective, reliable and safe fuel gas distribution systems. They are highly flexible and light-weight providing
ease of installation. PE piping systems are chemical and corrosion resistant thereby reducing the need for cathodic
protection of the underground piping infrastructure. The heat fusion method of joining these time-tested systems
provides the potential of leak-free system performance. A full range of diameters from 1/2" CTS to 24" IPS is
available in a variety of wall thicknesses or SDR's.
More recently, a new thermoplastic piping material has been introduced to the fuel gas distribution industry.
Polyamide (PA) piping systems are yet another innovation within the plastics piping industry that offers a new
range of performance capability. The PA piping systems possess a higher hydrostatic stress rating than the
traditional PE piping systems, and, as such, provide a perfect complement for higher pressure operational needs.
Like the PE piping systems, the PA systems are available in a broad array of sizes and with a full complement of
fittings. Similarly, the PA piping systems are joined using heat fusion methods which provides, once again, for the
potential for leak-free system performance.
While polyamide piping products have been used in various energy-related applications for over three decades they have only
recently been introduced to the fuel gas distribution industry. Today, 4" IPS SDR 11 Polyamide is the only plastic pipe
that is approved for use in fuel gas distribution at pressures up to and including 200 psi by the Department of
Transportation. This illustrates the potential use of PA piping systems as a durable, corrosion-free, chemical-resistant
and leak-free alternative in the operating ranges of steel pipe.