PLASTIC (FRP) SYSTEMS
DGC AFRICA manufacturers the complete range of FRP products including; piping & spooling, tanks & vessels, ducting, scrubbers, stacks & chimney liners as well as specialty and custom engineered products.
Industries served include – mining & metals, chemical & petrochemical, oil & gas, pulp & paper, power & flue gas desulphurization.
Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) is a composite material made of a polymer matrix reinforced with fibres, usually glass fibres. The polymer provides excellent chemical resistance while the fibres provide the structural integrity. Depending of the resin type and the glass to resin type and the glass to resin ratio the material properties for individual structural layer can be optimised for corrosion resistance and physical strength.
For most wet applications, the maximum operating temperature is 100°C (212°F) with excursions up to 120°C (248°F). Dry environments can operate at 177°C (350°F) with excursions up to 204°C (400°F). Because not all resins are suitable for processes that have thermal cycling or high temperature excursions, it is important to consult and obtain warranties from the resin manufacturer when designing for these applications.
As with all construction materials in corrosive environments, FRP has specific design and fabrication requirements which will ensure its success. These requirements consist of the following:
Proper resin selection and corrosion barrier design to maximise corrosion resistance.
Proper design by experienced and qualified non-metallic engineer.
Proper fabrication and installation by knowledgeable and experienced personnel.
Proper inspection and maintenance by qualified inspectors.
Specialised requirements e.g., fire retardant resin systems.
The average installed cost for FRP is approximately one third the comparative price of stainless steel and one fifth the comparative price of higher nickel alloys.
Stainless Steel prices continue to trend rapidly upward in concert with the price and availability of nickel. As the global economy continues its recovery and developing nations increase their infrastructure built, base metal prices, most notably copper, nickel and stainless steel are expected to continue their upward trend. Moreover, the availability of stainless steels and higher nickel alloys is falling off and delivery times are lengthening considerably (Source: International Monetary Fund).
LIFECYCLE COST ECONOMICS
FRP has a proven longer service life than stainless steel and other high nickel alloys, with FRP case studies dating back to 1979 and with most of the subject cases still in service today. The service life of a steel tank with an anti-corrosion coating is around 10 years.
UV stabilization means no painting or lacquering is required after installation and the lightweight nature of FRP means it can be easily lifted and moved for ease of cleaning.
Thanks to its non-corrosive properties, FRP requires little maintenance aside from cleaning. Metallic solutions require relatively high maintenance due to its inclination to corrode.
With FRP it is possible to effect repairs without interrupting operations. Old or damaged tanks could be repaired easily on-site.
Chemical resistance is a key predictor of service life. FRP made from epoxy vinyl ester resin has a good or better chemical resistance than Alloy-C276 and is superior to 2205 stainless steel. FRP has a far superior resistance to dissolved chlorides and moderate concentrations of sulphuric acid. It is also superior to alloys in aqueous acidic high chloride environments. FRP is impervious to water (be it submersion or splash), fumes and gases and is resistant to most chemicals. A variety of corrosion barriers are available, which are capable of withstanding the full range of caustic chemicals.
FRP is approximately 60-75% lighter than steel, yet it is pound-for-pound stronger. The lighter weight greatly reduces handling, transport, and installation costs. The high glass-to-resin ratio produces a material that is capable of achieving excellent load-bearing results.
FRP grating, with an integrally bonded gritted top surface, has achieved some of the highest levels of slip resistance ever recorded for a walking surface. FRP is 50% safer than steel grating and 70% safer than chequer plate for slip resistance. This degree of safety is crucial for OH&S-conscious workplaces, such as mine sites, oil rigs, and factories.
ANTI-STATIC & ANTI-SPARK
FRP is perfectly suited to sensitive environments, thanks to its ability to dissipate static electricity, as well as its non-sparking properties. Static dissipation is very important in underground and offshore locations, while FRP is ideal in gaseous environments, as it will not spark if tools are accidentally dropped - a hazard on steel flooring.
As FRP is produced with moulds, it can be manufactured to any shape or design with a huge variety of surface profiles and unlimited colours.
PIPING AND SPOOLING
Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) piping systems for corrosive applications have been used widely within the industry for more than 50 years. FRP piping has superior corrosion resistance when compared to metallic piping and can be more economical than the stainless, titanium and high nickel alloy alternatives. That is why industries such as Pulp & Paper, Mining, Chemical Processing, Water, Power & FGD have successfully chosen to utilise FRP piping in their process systems.
TANKS AND VESSELS
Fibreglass reinforced plastic (FRP) tanks and vessels, including the auxiliary components, can be fabricated in virtually any shape or configuration, demonstrating the flexibility inherent with FRP composites. FRP tanks are your environmentally safe answer to processing and storing corrosive gases and liquids, whether below or above ground. Tanks, vessels and scrubbers can be designed to handle a wide variety of dynamic, hydrostatic loads and chemical environments. Such processing systems also find use as absorbers, de-misters, air strippers and bleach towers.
Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) Ductwork is your answer to conveying critical fumes within your facility. FRP duct systems have a long history in industries such as Power, FGD, Metals and Mining, Pulp & Paper, Chemical Processing, and Odour Control.
Industrial scrubbers/absorbers, shells, and vessel internals have been manufactured using FRP for many years due to the corrosion resistance and dependability of Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic. FRP scrubbers and scrubber components have been used in a wide range of industries to include Power & FGD, Metals & Mining, Chemical Processing, Cement, Water Remediation, and Odour Control. With the proper material selection, FRP can provide long-term corrosion resistance and low maintenance costs in applications where carbon steel, stainless steel, duplex stainless steel, coatings, linings are simply not a long-term solution. FRP material is also a more economical solution to high nickel content alloys in scrubber environments containing elevated chloride concentrations or wet acids.
STACKS AND CHIMNEY LINERS
Industries such as Pulp & Paper, Metals & Mining, Chemical Processing, and Power & FGD successfully utilize FRP Stacks in process systems in which FRP has superior corrosion resistance. Compared to metallic stacks or where FRP is more economical than the stainless, titanium, and high nickel alloy alternatives.
SPECIALITY AND CUSTOM ENGINEERED PRODUCTS
Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic composites naturally lend themselves to unique customer requirements which do not lend themselves to standard designs, existing tooling, or standard manufacturing practices.