Customer story

Infra Supply choose reliable and flexible SSAB steel pipes for ground-breaking project

Infra supply

Flexibility, reliable delivery and responsiveness: these were the reasons why Infra Supply chose SSAB as its pipe supplier for a unique solution for cooling a battery factory in Gothenburg, Sweden. When the project is complete, the spiral-welded steel pressure pipes will transport treated wastewater for cooling the factory, before the water is returned to the district heating system and used to heat people’s homes.

In Gothenburg, in western Sweden, a unique collaboration is underway between the city’s water treatment plant and Northvolt’s upcoming battery factory. When the factory is operational in 2026, treated wastewater from the municipality’s treatment plant will be directed to the city’s district heating network to heat residential homes. The resulting cooled water will then be transported further to the battery factory to be used for cooling in its manufacturing processes. This saves a lot of electricity that would otherwise have been needed to cool the facility. Next, the water, which is now reheated, is returned into the district heating system.

For the concept to become a reality, SSAB steel pressure pipes are currently being laid along the 6.4 kilometer stretch between the municipal treatment plant and Northvolt.

“In total, there will be about 12,800 meters of single pipes. There will be a cold water pipe to the factory and a hot water pipe back,” says Jonny Karlsson, CEO of Annebergs Bygg & Anläggning, who are constructing the pipe lines.


Help with purchasing

Annebergs Bygg & Anläggning was founded by Jonny Karlsson in 1991. Among its services, it digs and builds pipes for water, sewage and storm water. Since 2020, Annebergs Bygg & Anledning has been part of the infrastructure company Eleda Group. The same group also includes Infra Supply, which works with the coordination of purchases for companies that work with infrastructure.

“We realized quite quickly that the volume of pipes needed for this project is so large that we cannot handle it ourselves. That's why we sought help from Infra Supply to coordinate the purchases,” says Jonny Karlsson.

“We basically have a daily dialogue with SSAB where we raise questions and problems that come up. They have the expertise and when we ask something, we get feedback within an hour. It is an incredible luxury for us and feels very safe.”

Kristian Vevang, CEO of Infra Supply


Flexible pipes

Originally, the plan was to use docile iron pipes for the project. They are delivered from further south in Europe and are only available with fixed bends. Given the existing infrastructure on the route where the pipes are to run, it would not have worked. From a climate point of view, they also wanted pipes that were manufactured at a closer location. Annebergs Bygg & Anläggning and Infra Supply therefore decided to use SSAB's Finnish-made spiral-welded steel pressure pipes with a diameter of 1,000 millimeters.
“Another reason why we chose SSAB is that historically they have always been able to deliver what we need on time and in the right quantities. It is a mark of quality,” says Kristian Vevang, CEO of Infra Supply.

Over the course of a year, around 240 deliveries have arrived for the project. The current pipes are very well suited for the transfer of different materials, as well as heat and energy at both low and high temperatures. In order for them to be installed on the specified route, approximately 90 percent of the pipes in the project are custom ordered in unique lengths and bends.

“The longest pipes are 16 meters and then we can choose which lengths we want to order below that. If they need to be curved, we can also determine the exact degree. With dimensions this large, all lengths and bends need to be completely correct. The slightest deviation and it will immediately end up wrong,” says Jonny Karlsson.


Dialogue and expertise

There is no room for error. The project is extremely pressed for time and must be completed already by 24 July 2024. That was another reason why SSAB was chosen as the pipe supplier.

“I have been ordering pipes from them for over 20 years and I can't recall any errors whatsoever. They are very careful about what they produce and deliver,” says Jonny Karlsson.

Kristian Vevang adds: “We basically have a daily dialogue with SSAB where we raise questions and problems that come up. They have the expertise and when we ask something, we get feedback within an hour. It is an incredible luxury for us and feels very safe.”


Unique solutions

Only 3.5 kilometers of piping will be buried - the rest will be above ground. As Gothenburg is right on the coast, the air has high salt content, the second highest (C5) corrosion class. For this reason Annebergs Bygg & Anläggning and Infra Supply have chosen SSAB's concrete-encased pipes with PE coating.

“SSAB is the only one who offers this solution and we are very proud to be able to implement it here in Gothenburg. It also provides an extremely long life, which we value highly,” says Kristian Vevang.

An S355 grade steel is used in the project, which has higher strength than standard, and this allows the project to reduce some of its costs.

“Thanks to the strength, the pipes can hang freely over quite long distances and this means that we need less pipe support and fewer concrete foundations, which is cost-saving for us.”


The right quantities at the right time

Planning for the entire project is carried out month-by-month. Therefore, pipe orders from SSAB are also made on a monthly basis. In order for the project to be on schedule, SSAB needs to deliver the right amount of pipes at the right time.

“SSAB's delivery reliability means that we neither receive over nor under the consignment. That, together with their capacity and willingness to do what’s best for the project, makes them unique. They are very responsive to changes and are on their toes throughout the course of the project. They are one of the few companies that can live up to our requirements,” says Kristian Vevang.

“What I appreciate most about SSAB is the security – knowing that I have a solid partner. They stand by all their guarantees and commitments. We are very satisfied with the cooperation with them and I know that I will have a long relationship with SSAB in many projects to come.”

About Infra Supply

  • A Swedish company that coordinates purchases for companies that work with infrastructure.
  • Founded in 2017 by Kristian Vevang.
  • Infra Supply is part of the Eleda Group, which is a Swedish corporation that focuses on construction, contracting and services within infrastructure.
  • Infra Supply and Annebergs Bygg & Anläggning have ordered 12,800 meters of SSAB steel pressure pipes for construction in Gothenburg.

 

www.infrasupply.se

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