Manchester-based Tyco Mechanical Products (TMP) has specified and supplied a complete HVAC mechanical solution at Audi’s biggest production site, in Germany.
A new paint plant has been developed in Ingolstadt – one of the largest car factories in Europe - and TMP’s brief was to facilitate cooled water, chilled water and compressed air.
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The project was awarded on the strength of TMP’s proposal to supply a grooved coupling system with reduced fixed point forces, in combination with pipe support racks, pipe hangers and metal framing to overcome complex project challenges. GRINNELL grooved couplings eliminated the need for traditional techniques, such as welding at high elevation points of the building, and expansion bellows, which resulted in reduced anchor forces on the building structure.
To ensure that the installation phase remained trouble-free, training was delivered to on-site operators, using grooving tools to demonstrate safe and correct methods of pipe grooving. GMS personnel continued to visit the site to provide additional support, training, advice and reports, managing any unexpected issues as they arose during the installation phase.
The additional benefits of opting for grooved couplings and fittings over welded or flanged systems included faster installation time and safer operations. The absence of hot works at Audi’s facility meant that no special health and safety measures were required and ensured that work areas did not need to be isolated due to fire risk, electric arc or fume generation that occur during welding.
GRINNELL mechanical products were supplied throughout the facility with specification to the piping bridge, piping ring line, cooling towers, rooftop piping, pipe risers and mechanical room. Prefabricated pipe support racks were connected to the primary building structure to support the DN500 / 20” Chilled Water ring line around the entire building. Flexible coupling configurations were used instead of expansion bellows and allowed for innovative piping systems, transforming linear pipe expansion into angular deflection. A variety of coupling sizes, ranging from 60.3mm to 508mm (2 to 20 inches), supported the piping in the facility’s 48m x 60m mechanical room, housing chillers, compressors, pumps and headers. KWIKSTRUT metal framing and brackets were specifically designed by TMP as part of the piping system and pipe support solution. In addition, bespoke colour requirements for compressed air piping were applied to satisfy the client’s needs and specifications.
Marcel De Vries from TMP was responsible for project management. He said: “The team did a thoroughly professional job, from the design phase right through to final installation. We were able to provide a unique offering with an integral solution of GRINNELL piping systems and KWIKSTRUT pipe supports. With detailed planning and preparation from the start we remained one step ahead of the competition and offered our customer an innovative, robust and cost-effective total grooved pipework solution for optimal efficiency.”
To herald the arrival of the new paint finishing plant, employees built a special Audi RS3 Sportback, which featured creative paintwork airbrushed onto the hood of the car to make it appear as if the engine is visible to the naked eye. Other trick paint finishes were applied to the exterior of the car to make reference to the new Lackiererei Decklack N50 site, which will be used to paint the Audi A4.