Morocco is the largest phosphate ore exporter in the world. Phosphate rock mining and processing is Morocco’s leading industry and phosphates and fertilizers comprise the country’s leading export commodity. On January 11th, Tekfen Construction and OCP (Office Cherifien des Phosphates) signed a contract for OCP’s Khouribga -Jorf Lasfar Phosphate Slurry Pipeline.
The 230 km pipeline will carry phosphate in the form of a slurry from the mining area of Khourigba to Jorf Lasfar Termnal at the Atlantic coast. The project will consist of a segment of 187 km of 36” pipeline, the largest diameter slurry pipeline ever to be built, and a segment of 39 km of 12”-20” pipeline, together with pump stations and storage facilities.
Slurry is a two-phase mixture of solid particles in an aqueous phase. The concentrate of the ore is mixed with water and then pumped over a long distance to a port where it can be shipped for further processing. The materials transported include coal, limestone, kaolin clay, China clay, iron concentrate, copper and nickel concentrates, phosphate concentrates, gold ore, fly ash, and mineral tailings.
Slurry pipelines are often exposed to high internal abrasion of the pipe wall caused by the movement of mineral slurry through the line. Different pipeline coating materials are available, at different costs, to enhance the lifetime of the slurry pump.
The pipes of the Khourigba project are internally coated with different coating materials, depending on product phase to be transported and position of the spool. A portion of the pipes will be coated with a poly-
urethane with high performance material properties.
ROSENS's RoCoat 3000 was the only material available that complied with all client specifications. ROSEN was invited by Tip Top Oberflächenschutz Elbe in Germany, responsible for all rubber and polyurethane lining of the project, to submit a quote and received the purchase order for the internal coating of pipes in June 2012.
ROSEN has developed its own coating material, RoCoat 3000, that is specifically designed for high abrasive slurry applications.
The coating process started in December 2012 and the project was completed in August 2013. In total, 704 m of pipes have been coated with a 12mm thick polyurethane coating. 194 coated pipes with diameters ranging from 12” to 36” left the ROSEN production site. Some of the pipes were installed with flanges and weldolets with different sizes.
This was the first large commercial coating project for ROSEN and has been carried out without any significant problems. But it was not only the coating itself that challenged the ROSEN team. Also processes for an extensive quality testing and documentation program, to be carried out for each pipe spool, had to be developed and implemented.