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Poliplex PE100 Pipe

Polyethylene (PE) pipes have been produced in Australia since the mid 1950’s, whilst initially in smaller diameters for industrial and agricultural applications, PE pipe and fittings are now available in diameters up to 2000mm. Usage has grown rapidly over this period and polyethylene resins are evolving from the tradition PE100 from the growing demand for higher performance, longer-life PE pipes that will provide reliable service for 100 years or more.



POLIplex® pipes are used to convey all types of liquids and gases for above and below ground applications including:

  • Urban water and gas supply
  • Mine dewatering
  • Irrigation supply
  • Slurry pipelines
  • Vacuum, pressure and gravity sewer systems
  • Submarine pipelines and ocean outfalls
  • Trenchless pipeline installation and rehabilitation
  • Industrial process pipe work
  • Compressed air services
  • Electrical and telecommunication cable conduits
  • Upstream coal seam gas and water pipelines
POLIplex® PE Pipes and Fittings System Technical Guide


POLlplex® polyethylene pipes offer the following benefits:

  • Full axial restraint which eliminates the need for thrust blocks
  • Low celerity material minimises water hammer
  • UV stability for above ground pipelines
  • Rust and corrosion free
  • Long length availability to minimise joints
  • Complete range of fittings
  • Weldable using butt and electrofusion methods
  • High ring stiffness for deeply buried pipelines
  • Excellent abrasion resistance
  • Possibility of 100+ year asset life
Material Options

Material Options

Mechanical Properties
Property Value & Unit
Density (Specific Gravity) 955kg/m3
Yield Strain 10%
Yield Stress 25MPa
Compressive Strength 32MPa
Tensile Modulus 900MPa
Hardness Shore D 63
Poisson’s Ratio 0.4
Ring bending modulus (3 mins) 950MPa
Ring bending modulus (50 yrs) 260MPa
Thermal Properties
Property Value & Unit
Coefficient of Thermal Expansion 1.8 x 10-4/°C
Thermal Conductivity 0.38W/m.K

Typical Fire Resistance Properties

Property Value & Unit
Ignitability 13
Smoke Development 3
Spread of Flame 7
Heat Evolved 6
Temperature effect on pressure rating

The co-efficient of thermal linear expansion of polyethylene varies with temperature but at ambient lies in the range 1.2 to 2.4 x 10-4 per degree C. In broad terms, this is about twenty times that of steel. and therefore unrestrained pipe will expand or contract much more than the steel structure that may be supporting it.

Should the pipe be fully restrained, the strain due to thermal change will generate stress in the material. However due to °the relatively low tensile deformation modulus of polyethy ene and assuming a typical ambient temperature fluctuation of less than 40 C, it can be assumed that the safe allowable stress will lnot be exceeded. Over the longer term, stress relaxation will increase the ability of polyeth­ylene to accommodate high thermal strains.

The conductivity of polyethylene varies with temperature almost linearly and is typically O .4 7W/m.K at o•c to 0.37W/m.K al 70°C.

The specific heat of polyethylene varies with temperature from 1800 Joules/kg.Kat o•c to 2200J/kg.K at 60°C.

All temperatures above 25°C it is necessary to rerate polyethylene pressure pipe systems. The table below provides guidance as to the maximum operating pressure of PE100 pipes at temperature. It should be noted that at constant temperatures greater than 40°C, the 50-year design life of POLlplex ® pipes may be reduced.

Thermal rerating of PE100 polyethylene POLIplex® pipe

Maximum allowable operating pressure - PE100 Water pipe (m head)

Temp°C PN4 PN6.3 PN8 PN10 PN12.5 PN16 PN20 PN25
20 40 63 80 100 125 160 200 250
25 36 58 73 91 115 145 182 227
30 36 58 73 91 115 145 182 227
35 33 53 67 83 106 133 167 208
40 33 53 67 83 106 133 167 208
45 (35 y)* 31 49 62 77 99 123 154 192
50 (22 y)* 29 46 57 71 91 114 143 179
55 (15 y)* 29 46 57 71 91 114 143 179
60 (7 y)* 27 43 53 67 85 107 133 167
80 (1 y)* 20 32 40 50 63 80 100 125

i. The values tabled are for POLlplex® pipe manufactured to AS/NZS 4130 and fittings made from compounds complying with AS/NZS 4131.

ii. The times given in years as (35y) are allowable extrapolation limits obtained by applying the factors in Table 1 of ISO 9080 to two years of test data at 80°C. Where appropriate. specific advice should be obtained from the manufacturer. and data provided shall be derived from testing to ISO 9080.

Thermal expansion and contraction

The co-efficient of thermal linear expansion of polyethylene varies with temperature but at ambient lies in the range 1.2 to 2.4 x 10-4 per degree C. In broad terms, this is about twenty times that of steel, and therefore unrestrained pipe will expand or contract much more than the steel structure that may be supporting it.

Should the pipe be fully restrained, the strain due to thermal change will generate stress in the material. However due to the relatively low tensile deformation modulus (E) of PE and assuming a typical ambient temperature fluctuation of less than 40°C it can be assumed that the safe allowable stress will not be exceeded. Over the longer term, stress relaxation will increase the ability of PE to accommodate high thermal strains.


On the application of heat, polyethylene melts at between 120°C and 135°C and will catch fire at 340°C in the presence of name. Combustion is not self supporting if there is less than 17% oxygen present.

Under the appropnate conditions, polyethylene burns in air with a faintly luminous yellow flame to yield carbon dioxide and water. In uncontrolled fire conditions, other compounds can be produced including carton monoxide, aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons together with various oxygen containing substances.


This property refers to the passage of either liquids or gases through the molecular structure of a material. Polyethylene resin, being hydrophobic, has a low permeability to water vapour, It is also relatively impermeable to gases such as carbon dioxide. ethylene, natural gas, oxygen, methane, air and nitrogen.

It does, however, exhibit significant permeability to some other gases and liquids such as aliphatic, aromatic and chlorinated solvents which are soluble with polyethylene. As a general rule, the larger the vapour molecule or the more dissimilar in chemical structure to polyethylene, the lower will be the permeability. To calculate the loss of gas from a PE pipe Fick's first law is applicable. This can be written:

Volume of permeating gas (m3) = g ΠDLPT/t


g = permeability coefficient (m3 per

D = outside of diameter (m)

L = length of pipeline (m)

P = partial pressure (MPa)

T = time (days)

t = thickness (m)

Poisson’s Ration

When any elastic material, including polyethylene, is extended by a longitudinal force it will simultaneously contract in the lateral direction. The ratio of the (smaller) transverse strain to the longitudinal strain is the Poisson's Ratio for the material and ranges from 0.3 for metals to 0.5 for rubber polymers. For PE, a value of 0.4 is accepted for calculation purposes.

Because of the comparatively high circumferential strain in a PE pipe under normal operating pressures, the longitudinal contraction may be significant where there is no restraint. This can occur in above ground installations or where slip liners are not grouted. In these circumstances the pipeline may require anchoring to prevent separation, The ultimate circumferential strength of the pipes will increase slightly when axial contraction is prevented.

Worked Example

Problem: By what amount will a POLIplex One Hundred pipeline shorten due to Poisson's effect when operating at class PN head?

Circumferential (hoop) strain= Design Stress(MPa)/Long-term Modulus (MPa)

8.0/200 or 4%

Longitudinal = Poisson's Ratio x hoop strain

= 04 x 0.04

= 0.016

or 1.6% of length of pipeline

That is at maximum working head an unrestrained pipeline 100 metres long will shorten 1.6 metres and a 6 metre length joined with a mechanical coupling will contract 96 millimetres.

PE100 Material Composition

The PE100 polyethylene resin used in POLIplex® pipes and fittings are pre-compounded, either black or coloured with pigment, complying with AS/NZS 4131. Anti-oxidants are used to inhibit oxidation of the polymer at the compounding stage and during subsequent processing.

Carbon black is used in all black POLIplex® pipe at a concentration of 2.25 ± 0.25% by mass as an ultra violet radiation absorber.

In natural and coloured POLIplex® materials, hindered amine light stabiliser (HALS), ultra violet absorber. is used in lieu of carbon black.

Chemical Resistance

Polyethylene is a polyolefin resin, in chemical terms a non-polar high molecular weight paraffin of the hydrocarbon family. Hence it is very resistant to (non-oxidising) strong acids, strong bases and salts. It is mildly affected by aliphatic solvents although aromatic and chlorinated solvents will cause some swelling. Polyethylene is affected by strongly oxidising substances such as halogens and concentrated inorganic acids. POLIplex® pressure pipes should not be used to convey water disinfected with chlorine dioxide at any temperature which has been found to rapidly deplete the antioxidant additives at elevated temperature.

View the Iplex Chemical Resistant Tool

Product Details

Product Details

Standards and Approvals

POLlplex® is an integrated family of polyethylene pipes produced by Iplex, based on PE100 resin. POLIplex® pipes are manufactured to AS/NZS 4130 from resin compounds complying with AS/NZS 4131 and are StandardsMark licensed to AS/NZS 4130 by third-party certifier SAI Global.

View Iplex Product Certifications

Colour and Markings

Iplex POLIplex® pipes are colour coded as per AS/NZS 4130 to easily distinguish between the different types of pipes applications. POLIplex® pipes can be manufactured all black, with stripes or coex.

POLIplex® PE100 pipe colour identification

Product Application
POLIplex® PE100 Black  
POLIplex® PE100 Blueline Drinking water
POLIplex® PE100 Purple Stripe Recycled water
POLIplex® PE100 Cream Stripe Sewerage
POLIplex® PE100 THERMAPIPE® White Reduces absorption of heat
POLIplex® PE100 Yellow Stripe Gas
Economy Rural Greenline Rural
Environmental Credentials

Iplex Pipelines has published verified Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) on our range of Polyethylene pipes. EPD’s are third party certified documents based on ISO 14025 and EN 15804 Standards that communicate transparent and comparable information about the life-cycle environmental impact of a product or service. Specifically, product declarations include information on the environmental impact of raw material acquisition, energy use and efficiency, composition of materials and chemical substances, emissions to air, soil and water and waste generation.

View Iplex's POLIplex® polyethylene pipe EPD

POLIplex® Pipe Range and Dimensions

POLIplex® PE100 pipes are available from DN16 – DN2000

Iplex POLIplex® Series 1 - Pressure Pipe Dimensions

Rural Polyethylene Pipe Range and Dimensions

Iplex Greenline rural polyethylene pipe is rated to 800 kPa for use in rural applications. A range of rural compression fittings are available from ¾ inch to 2 inch.

Greenline economy rural pipe dimensions

Nominal ID in (mm) (inches) ID Ave (mm) Wall Ave (mm) OD Ave (mm)
20 (3/4”) 19.0 1.6 22.2
25 (1 ) 25.3 1.7 28.7
32 (1 ¼”) 31.6 2.0 35.6
40 (1 ½”) 38.0 2.4 42.8
50 (2”) 50.9 3.2 57.3

Manufactured with a highly reflective white material on the external skin, THERMAPIPE® reduces the absorption of heat.

Iplex Thermapipe® Technical Brochure

POLIplex® Joining Systems

POLlplex® polyethylene pipes may be joined economically using thermal butt-welding or electrofusion equipment: alternately diameters up to DN 110 are commonly joined using lplex compression couplings complying with AS/NZS 4129. These fittings make joints quick and easy, which can be undone and reused when altering the system layout.


POLIplex® Friction Loss Charts
POLIplex® PE100 - Hydraulic Design – Pressure Pipeline Design for water and Sewerage
POLIplex® PE100 - Hydraulic Design – Selection of pipe diameter and class
POLIplex® PE100 - Hydraulic Design – Thrust Restraint and Anchorages
Handling & Storage

Handling & Storage

POLIplex® PE100 - Handling and Storage
Installation & Testing

Installation & Testing

POLIplex® PE100 - Installation
POLIplex® PE 100 - Testing
Above ground POLIplex® pipe support spans

Maximum spacing of supports for fixed installation

Nominal outside diameter of pipe(mm) Recommended maximum spacing of supports (metres)
Horizontal or graded pipes Vertical Pipes
16 0.25 0.50
20 0.30 0.60
25 0.35 0.70
32 0.38 0.75
40 0.43 0.85
50 0.45 0.90
63 0.50 10.5
75 0.60 1.20
90 0.67 1.35
125 0.75 1.50
140 0.85 1.70
160 1.00 2.00
200 1.10 2.20
225 1.15 2.30
250 1.25 2.50
280 1.30 2.60
355 1.50 3.00

Note: Design of support brackets for polyethylene pipes should include allowance for expansion and contraction. For more information please refer to AS/NZS 2033.

POLIplex® PE 100 - Safe Axial (Pulling) Load

Frequently Asked Questions

Are POLlplex® pipes resistant to ultra violet radiation?

Yes. POLlplex®pipes contain either carbon black or chemical stabilisers to protect them from the effects of ultra violet radiation. Black pipes are suitable for long-term external exposure to sunlight. Coloured pipe may be stored for up to 2-years in direct sunlight. For long-term exposure in above ground applications, lplex recommends the use of white THERMAPIPE®.

Do I need thrust blocks or other forms of restraint on POLlplex® pipelines?

Generally no. as POLIplex® pipes are fully welded or mechanically restrained, however it may be necessary to provide thrust restraint where POLlplex® pipelines connect to rubber ring jointed pipelines or other non restrained pipe or fillings. For more information, contact lplex Pipelines.

How do I pressure test POLlplex® pipelines?

Polyethylene pipes require a different test procedure to PVC or ductile iron pipelines to compensate for the materials tendency lo strain during pressure testing. If the correct test procedure is not used. the pipeline may appear to fail the test. Detailed information on the correct procedure is contained in Australian Standard AS/NZS 2033.

Can I use POLlplex® pipes to convey compressed air?

Yes. however they require rerating due to its elevated temperature and the stored energy contained in compressed air. Information is available in PIPA Industry Guideline POP002 "Polyethylene (PE) Pipes and Fillings for Compressed Air", which can be accessed at

What is the maximum temperature at which POLlplex® pipe can be used?

All temperature above 25°C, polyethylene pipes require pressure rerating. At very high temperatures as well as very low tempera­tures. the life of polyethylene pipes may be substantially reduced. For detailed information, refer to PIPA Industry Guideline POP013 "Temperature rerating of PE pipes", which can be accessed at

Are POLlplex® pipes affected by chemicals?

Whilst polyethylene is a highly chemical resistant material, there are some chemicals which are unsuitable for carriage in POLlplex® pipes, or may reduce their service life. For detailed information on most chemicals, refer to the Iplex Chemical Resistance Tool

Do I need any special training to con duct butt-fusion or electrofusion welding?

Yes. Welding by untrained operators is the most common cause of joint failure in polyethylene pipelines. Australian Standard AS/NZS 2033 stipulates that polyethylene welders must be trained and certified by a Registered Training Organisation and that welding procedures must be in accordance with PIPA Industry Guidelines POP00 1 "Electrofusion Jointing of PE pipe and fittings for pressure applications" and/or POP003 "Butt Fusion Jointing of PE pipes and fittings - recommended parameters". More information can be accessed at

How do I store electrofusion fittings?

Fittings should be stored out of the direct sunlight and in their original boxes and sealed plastic bags until immediately before use. Ideally, couplings should be stored on their flat ends.

Can I use an electrofusion fitting which has been removed from its original plastic bag?

Contamination is the most prevalent cause of failure of electrofusion fittings Failure to preserve the manufacturer's packaging of fittings increases the risk of UV oxidisation or surface contamination possibly rendering the fitting useless or unsaleable.

What can I use to clean electrofusion fittings prior to welding?

lplex Pipelines stock cleaning wipes that are ideal for installation preparation Methylated spirits contain residual oils that will contami­nate the welding surface and should not be used.

How do I weld coiled pipe that has become oval?

Coiled pipe will become oval due to the stress induced during coiling and must be rerounded using the correct tools prior to welding. lplex stock a variety of rerounding equipment suitable for this purpose (Refer to page 100 for a list of available rerounding equipment).

What is the difference between SOR and PN ratings?

SOR is the Standard Dimensional Ratio of the pipe outside diameter to wall thickness. PN ratings are the nominal pressure rating of the pipe, but only at when it is carrying non-viscous fluids at 20°c. SOR is the preferred method for specifying the grade of pipe required.

What is the expected life of POLlplex® pipelines?

There are many factors that may affect the life of polyethylene pipelines They include temperature, fluid type, installation method, UV exposure and cyclic loading. Wien correctly installed in underground applications, POLlplex® pipes conveying water will have an anticipated service of in excess of 100 years.

Enquire about Poliplex PE100 Pipe


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