The role of Fusamatic electrofusion fittings and Fusion Assist in the construction of a polyethylene pressure pipeline for wastewater in the province of Lecce in Southern Italy.
Fusion Group is a world-class manufacturer of electrofusion fittings. Since 2017, Fusion Group has been a member of the AVK Group. AVK is a privately owned industrial group currently comprising 100+ companies worldwide. Fusion Group’s headquarters are located in Chesterfield, England.
Fusion Italia S.R.L, Fusion Group’s distributor and wholly owned sales company in Italy, has won a major contract to supply Fusamatic electrofusion fittings to a project in Lecce province; Lecce is often referred to as the ‘heel of Italy’ and forms part of the Puglia region.
The project involves the construction of a 3km wastewater pressure pipeline running along the south coast of Lecce in the area of Lido Marini and Spiaggia Marina Di Salve.
Fusion Assist, Fusion Group’s asset management app, is being used to create a comprehensive record of the electrofusion joints on the project, including the GPS location of each joint.
Management of wastewater in Lecce is the responsibility of Acquedotto Pugliese S.p.A. An existing wastewater pipeline had deteriorated to the point that sewage risked being discharged into the environment.
In its place, it was decided to construct a polyethylene pressure pipeline to transport the wastewater. Fusion Italia has supplied 125mm, 160mm, 200mm and 250mm low-pressure couplers to the project.
Along the length of the pipeline there are multiple connections to private properties. The properties store their wastewater in tanks and this is then discharged into the pipeline. As in much of Southern Italy, the terrain is rocky and construction of the pipeline trench is far from straightforward.
When completed, the 3km pipeline will be owned by the local authority.
The Fusamatic fittings used on the project were supplied by Fusion Italia’s local distributor in Bari.
Fusamatic electrofusion fittings, when used in conjunction with a Fusamatic-compliant electrofusion control box, automatically sets the required electrofusion parameters once the leads are connected to the fitting.
All the installer has to do is check the parameters match the fitting and start the weld cycle.
Fusion Assist is Fusion Group’s free asset management app that works on mobile phones and tablets and can work on both Apple and Android devices.
Fusion Assist is designed to enhance traceability of network assets by recording data on each electrofusion installed network asset and can also be used to support with monitoring and reinforcement of installation best practice.
The data contained in the barcode and QR code of each Fusamatic fitting is fundamental to the Fusion Assist app. Opening the app on their mobile phone, the installer scans the ISO 12176-4 barcode on the fitting. Fusamatic fittings will prompt the automatic capture of Fusion’s own unique QR code located on the fitting, providing the individual fitting serial number. Together these provide traceability right down to the raw materials used to manufacture the fitting.
As well as traceability data, Fusion Assist also records asset location via GPS, core installation parameters and reference images for that fitting within one central record. Fusion Assist is not restricted to Fusion products and assets from other manufacturers can be recorded in the app to ensure the asset owner retains a comprehensive asset map.
Andrea Zunino (Commercial Director, Fusion Italia) is the Fusion Italia lead on the project:
"There is no doubt in my mind that the network owner chose Fusamatic fittings in part because of the network management data provided by the free Fusion Assist App.
Whilst there are similar apps available, Fusion Assist is the easiest to use for the installer, especially allowing the ability to track retrospectively, without necessarily being directly connected to an electrofusion control box. Fusion Assist improves quantity, quality and productivity of asset records. The client liked the fact that they were able to record other assets with the Fusion Assist app, including the pipe and other fittings."
Back in January 2022, Andrea Zunino spent a day on site training the installation team on the use of the Fusion Assist app. Over 500 joints were recorded in the first month on site. The project is on hold over the tourist season and will restart in October.
Andrea Zunino estimates that when the project is completed, some 3,000 Fusamatic fittings will have been used on the pipeline.
Water Utilities across the world are being challenged to improve the management of their networks.
Asset mapping, maintaining a record of the installation and location of network assets, has a key role to play in effective network management.
Fusion Assist, Fusion Group’s free mobile phone app, captures images of the installed asset, traceability data via barcodes and QR codes, and a GPS record of the asset location. It is manufacturer-agnostic, meaning data on all network assets - pumps, pipes, valves, fittings, hydrants etc - can be recorded.