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Receipt of first order from the City of Los Angeles for earthquake-resistant water pipes

October 22, 2012

Kubota Corporation (Head Office: Naniwa-ku, Osaka, Japan; Chairman, President & CEO: Yasuo Masumoto) recently received an order from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power in America for GENEX, earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe for water that the company has developed. This order is for a test installation towards official adoption later, but this is the first time that water pipe with a unique Japanese earthquake-resistant structure will be installed in America.

1. Order details

Contract date October 2, 2012
Quantity / length Nominal diameter φ 150 mm x about 550 m
Installation site Contour Drive, City of Los Angeles

2. Background

  • The strengthening of the earthquake resistance of water pipe is a big issue in Los Angeles, which is positioned on the west coast of America where a lot of earthquakes occur.
  • Kubota developed earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe for the first time in 1974 and its effectiveness has been recognized as it remained undamaged even in large earthquakes including the 1995 Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake and the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. The replacement of aged water pipe has also become a pressing issue in Japan and since the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake, efforts to increase the earthquake resistance of pipelines have gradually gathered momentum. Currently, earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe is being used in about 43% of newly-installed water pipe. (The rate of conversion to earthquake resistance of buried pipe overall was about 10% as of the end of March 2010.)
  • Kubota's GENEX, the latest earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe, was well received when the company conducted a demonstration in Los Angeles in January this year, which led to the test installation this time. This will be the first time that Japanese earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe is installed overseas. Along with providing support for full-scale introduction, including guidance on installation, etc., we will also promote activities towards the expansion of future adoptions elsewhere, mainly in areas that require measures against earthquakes on the west coast of America.

[ Reference: GENEX earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe ]

  • Ductile iron pipe has the tenacity of ductile cast iron so it is made from strong material.
  • The joint of earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe can extend and contract to absorb the deformation of the ground. If the pipes move beyond the range of motion of the joint due to excessive deformation of the ground, the function of the pipe is maintained because its retaining structure comes into operation. Pipeline built from earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe is also known as "chain structure " because, like a chain, it does not come apart even if each respective link is moving.
  • Since the first "S-type" earthquake-resistant pipe was developed in 1974, the basic mechanism of earthquake-resistance has remained unchanged and we have repeated model changes in order to improve construction and installation characteristics, but there has been no damage to earthquake-resistant pipe even in the great earthquakes including the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake and the Great East Japan Earthquake.
  • With GENEX, we have improved construction and installation characteristics while retaining the structure of conventional earthquake-resistant pipe. In addition, we have given GENEX a special self-repairing coating on its outside surface. GENEX is the latest earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe, with earthquake-resistance and a long term durability , and can be expected to last for more than 100 years in 95% of Japan's national territory excluding mountainous areas.
  • We started full-scale sales from April 2011 with a lineup of pipe ranging in nominal diameter from φ 75 mm - φ 250 mm and adoption is currently expanding nationwide.
  • [ GENEX, the latest earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe ]

  • [ Suspended earthquake-resistant ductile iron pipe ]

  • [ Behavior of earthquake-resistant pipe due to ground deformation ]

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