New gas valves for renovation project widening Albert channel in Antwerp, Belgium

Renovation of a gas distribution pipe close to the Antwerp Sportpaleis event venue required three new gate valves DN500.

Renovation of the gas pipe is part of the project to elevate the Theunis bridge. Elevating the bridge will make it possible to enlarge the Albert channel, which is necessary to increase inland shipping.


Gas node loaded with precision

The entire construction of pipes, valves, dismantling joints, gear boxes and extension spindles – a so called gas node – is welded together and loaded in the trench with a crane. A precise job, since the gas node weights about 3.2 tonnes and the trench is only two metres wide, eight metres long and two metres deep.


Gate valves easy to handle

Tony Van Dyck, team leader gas at Eandis explains that the street where the node is installed is a small, one way alley that does not have much space inside the trench. And he points out why they chose AVK valves.

"The AVK gate valves have a short face-to-face length and low weight in comparison with other valves. This makes them easy to handle and install."
Tony Van Dyck, team leader gas at Eandis

Main gas pipe with a pressure of 4 bar

The pressure of the main gas pipe having a nominal pressure of 4 bar needed to be reduced to 25 mbar before installation of the gas node.

Gas pipe below Albert channel by controlled drilling

Before installation of the gas node, a new gas pipe needed to be installed below the Albert channel by a controlled drilling. A trench is not necessary with a controlled drilling, only a beginning and ending shaft. The drilling happens in three steps. First, the drill head is pushed through a rig in the soil. Then the drilling hole is enlarged. Last, the gas pipe is pulled through the drilling hole with utmost precision.


Elevation of Albert channel

The Albert channel is one of the most important river channels in Belgium. It connects Liège to Antwerp. Yearly the channel transports over 40 million tonnes of goods. Europe directs that the entire channel should have a free passage height of 9.1 meter. That way  barges with four layers of containers can pass smoothly and safely. To meet this directive, all bridges across the Albert channel need to be elevated.

Project details

  • Company: Eandis

  • Location: Antwerp Sportpaleis

  • Installation: May 2018

  • AVK products: three AVK gate valves for gas distribution

    • Pressure class: PN16

    • Diameter: DN500


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