High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) conduit has been the material of choice to protect the nation's fiber optic highways and has also been used by Department of Transportation (DOT) for traffic signal and highway lighting applications for decades. RBOC's (Regional Bell Operating Companies), ILEC's (Independent Local Exchange Carriers) and Network Operating companies have used Blue Diamond conduit for their fiber optic cable networks. Buried HDPE Conduit is resistant to chemicals and corrosive soils providing protection and long life. HDPE eliminates maintenance common to aerial networks. The long lengths and tensile strength of the conduit make it ideal for installation technologies of HDD (horizontal directional drilling) and plowing. Additionally, fiber optic cable is installed in the same conduit trench for ITS (Intelligent Transportation Systems) to monitor traffic, provide automatic toll payment, and CCTV systems to monitor accidents and provide safe motoring.
Overhead power lines are susceptible to storm damage and require continuous maintenance from “tree topping” to pole maintenance and replacement. Underground power lines, protected by HDPE conduit, are gaining popularity with utilities. Furthermore, underground power lines improve curb appeal and make neighborhoods more aesthetically pleasing. Power cable systems are designed for long life, the use of HDPE conduit to encase and protect the power cable from rock impingement is prudent engineering as it allows for quick and easy repairs without excavation of the cable. HDPE conduit and innerduct is used to carry low (600V-transformer to end user) and medium ( < 35kV-substation to transformer) voltage power lines.
HDPE Conduit Benefits And Options
Blue Diamond offers a wide range of products in sizes 1/2" through 6" in a variety of colors and striping combinations. Other options include pre-lubrication, pre-installed pull tape, pre-installed cable in conduit and a toneable wire. Blue Diamond complies with RUS/USDA standards, meets Buy America Requirements and all national specifications including ASTM, NEMA and UL.
HDPE conduit benefits include:
- A wide temperature range for installation, from -20 degrees C to 90 degree C operating temperature for cables
- A low coefficient of friction (20% lower than PVC) to allow for long cable pulls
- Tough, durable and a life expectancy well over that of the power cable.
- Replace or repair cable lines without digging or trenching
- Chemical and corrosion resistance
- Easy installation, HDPE pipe is the preferred material for HDD (Horizontal Directional Drilling), because of its long continuous lengths and high pull strength
- HDD benefits include the elimination of traffic disruption and minimal surface damage
- Can be continuously plowed as opposed to trenching PVC sticks.
Smooth Wall Conduit
Smooth wall is the industry standard High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Duct. The interior of smooth wall has a slick finish which delivers a low coefficient of friction for easy blowing or pulling of cable. It can also be pre-lubricated in our manufacturing facility for an even lower coefficient of friction. Smooth wall innerduct is a durable high quality product for direct burial and HDD (horizontal directional drilling) applications. Smooth wall is also used as an “innerduct”, meaning several conduits are placed inside a larger casing pipe.
Ribbed Wall Conduit
Blue Diamond’s ribbed wall innerduct conduit is designed to allow extremely long cable pulls to glide over the interior raised ribs. Ribbed wall innerduct is internally ribbed and available through 3” diameter in any SDR and SIDR ratings.
Blue Diamond has the capabilities to manufacture a variety of HDPE conduit for specialty applications. BDI tracer wire (or toneable) conduit provides a method of locating underground fiber optic cable using a single copper wire co-extruded onto the wall of the conduit. This provides a traceable corrosion resistant conductor. An alternative method of locating buried fiber optic cable is to use traceable pull tape, available pre-installed in any of our duct products.