Delivering HDPE training to the Coal Seam Gas Industry

High-density polyethylene (HDPE) or PE100 is used extensively in the Coal Seam Gas (CSG) sector as a preferred upstream medium for gathering gas and water. High-density polyethylene was initially used as the product of choice for numerous councils across Queensland in the transportation of treated and non-treated water.

1 Sep 2017

These days, HDPE is becoming increasingly popular due to it being an easy to process material and its high strength-to density ratio. It’s flexible, light, low impact, moisture resistant, low maintenance and has a guaranteed life-span.

Since the adoption of HDPE by the CSG industry, the growth in contractors offering HDPE welding services to the gas proponents has increased dramatically. The eastern state gas proponents of Santos, Origin Energy, Queensland Gas Company (QGC) and Arrow Energy typically hire external contractors to deliver welding services for HDPE. Whilst the requirements for HDPE welding are not the same as welding steel pipe lines, it is still an important part of the transport process of CSG from the fields in Western Queensland to the ultimate destination of Curtis Island for international export or other Eastern seaboard domestic markets.

In line with the increasing use of HDPE in the CSG fields, TAFE Queensland SkillsTech developed the High-density Polyethylene (HDPE) Welding (PE100). The accredited training program in HDPE welding provides tradespeople with the latest industry-relevant training using state-of-the-art equipment. To meet program needs, a HDPE Centre of Excellence was built at the TAFE Queensland SkillsTech Acacia Ridge training Centre. The skills learnt provide participants with opportunities to work in industry sectors that require HDPE installation, such as the CSG sector, government infrastructure bodies and building and construction trades, including plumbing.

TAFE Queensland SkillsTech also offer a HDPE Welding Supervisors course. The course provides supervisors with theory, hands-on practical skills in welding and the ability to lead and review contractors in field conditions. The course structure offers flexibility for large organisations unable to send employees offsite for training.

In mid-2016 TAFE Queensland SkillsTech delivered onsite training to approximately 20 Santos staff in the remote Yueleba camp, east of Roma in Queensland. The training was completed over two months in small teams to ensure that all participants had access to welders, sample pipes with different diameters, sleeves and saddles. Participants were given hands-on experience with each welder under individual instructor supervision, maximizing the site time allocated for Santos staff. TAFE Queensland SkillsTech also provide onsite training in Hot Tapping of live gas and water mains, Squeeze Off of live gas and water mains to allow for extension repair.

For more information about HDPE or other CSG industry training, talk to the TAFE Queensland SkillsTech team on 1800 654 447.

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