Fibreglass tank lining in Colombia

Wolftank Adisa travelled to Colombia in order to train and apply its fibreglass tank lining system.

The context

Many of the horizontal underground fibreglass tanks in Colombia are single wall. However, nowadays, more and more stations start to apply double wall types.

Because of the increasing rate of blended biofuels polyester original resins, the tanks suffer a degradation process. Thus, many of them break or the polyester is softened due to chemical attack. This situation leads to a reduction of the tensile strength.

In the case of double wall fibreglass tanks with interstitial monitoring using brine, the polyester usually has been damaged. Then it is necessary a rehabilitation process, including a wall reconstruction and a reactivation of the leak detection system.

Wolftank Adisa tank lining products are specially indicated for such applications thanks to their high chemical resistance against biofuel. The special bilayer woven fibreglass provides high mechanical strength and excellent adherence values.

During 2016 in Colombia there was a revolution in terms of filling station network property. Esso and Petrobrass decided to sell all their actives. In the meantime, other actors like Biomax, Terpel and Puma Energy increased their number of sites. It means that a lot of problems appeared due to diligence processes.

The scope of the project

At that moment, hundreds of fibreglass tanks showed imperfections and needed reparation.

In this context, Wolftank Adisa introduced its products through a local partner named DMAIC. Our technical and sales team met all important petrol companies in the country, always together with the DMAIC sales team.

In parallel, our trainers travelled to Colombia and organized a knowledge and technology transfer process with DMAIC technicians on tank lining. Their purpose was to support DMAIC in the implementation of the upcoming tank lining works as well as to prepare a pilot installation.

After the presentation of the commercial and technical solution the first orders came. Wolftank Adisa technical team was already ready to supervise on site DMAIC technicians. Also, to support them during the first execution.

The challenge

The first pilot project was for 4 tanks to be strengthened with a single wall tank lining in a Texaco Site: EDS Texaco El Cordobes Marinilla (Antioquia).

The team of DMAIC trained and supervised by Wolftank Adisa moved to the site all the technical equipment and the safety devices required for a safe man entry lining. This equipment included compressor, masks, explosimeters, ventilators, tripod, etc. Our technicians purchased it and controlled the whole process preparation.

The solution

Already on site, the first meetings with the station managers allowed to organize daily routines, organise Risk Prevention… All this in order to avoid accidents at the stations. The team considered every detail: signalling, emergency plans schedules, etc.

Once the team proceeded with the degasification and the tank cleaning according to the Texaco tank cleaning standards, the lining process begun.

In order to guarantee the perfect adherence of the Wolftank Adisa resin, the entire surface was slightly sandpapered. Afterwards the team applied the adhesion primer Adagrund Rot. They did it very thin by a smooth rolling (around 0,15 mm) process. Adagrund Rot is an adhesion primer which is specially performing for applications on fibreglass tanks. It triggers a slight chemical reaction between the resin and the fiberglass and provides a chemical and not only mechanical adhesion on the fibreglass tanks.

The work continued with the application of Wolftank Adisa DOPI resin which is a non-flammable lining material applied at ambient temperatures of around 30°C. It cures at the same temperature.
Wet on wet the Wolftank Adisa bi-woven fibreglass is impregnated in order to provide the structural strength of the lining. In the area of cracks, the team applied 2 layers of a stripe coating (20cm large fibreglass stripes) first using the same materials in order to re-establish locally the tensile strength.

After waiting for drying without additional heating for at least 4 hours of reworking time, the team applied the final layer. It ensured an excellent presentation and reinforced the hardness of the resin as well as a proper protection of the fibreglass.

The outcome

The pilot project of 4 tanks was very successful. The team completed it time and without any safety issue.

After the review, the project continued as initially planned and expected. In total, the team lined 20 fibreglass tanks in a first lining campaign by DMAIC with the support of Wolftank Adisa.

Currently 2 installation teams of 6 technicians of DMAIC are working continuously in a subsequent campaign. They are followed by the Spanish division of the Wolftank Adisa Group established in Madrid, Altereco.

Overall, our Colombian customers have appreciated that Wolftank Adisa offers a solution which is able to rehabilitate the fibreglass tanks with a minimum of disturbance in business continuity.


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