Headquartered in Eastern China, WuXi Biologics provides open-access, integrated technology platforms for biologics drug development. Work has recently begun on the new €325m start-of-the-art WuXi Biologics facility in Dundalk, Ireland and the plant aims to become the world’s largest single-use biologics manufacturing facility. Commercial production is scheduled to start in 2021, and the project is being run by the main construction partner PJ Hegarty’s, with design expertise supplied by Jacobs.
As a multi-storey pharmaceutical project consisting of four blocks, a highly efficient rainwater drainage solution was required. Ireland’s rainfall is famous the world over and the design team at Jacobs knew that siphonic drainage was simply the best solution on this site as it offered significant advantages in terms of costs savings and use of space. Pharmaceutical facilities are notoriously congested in terms of cabling, wiring, ducting, and other crucial internal building infrastructure. From power sources and ventilation to manufacturing-specific functionality, space is truly at a premium in a busy production environment, both within the walls, floors, and ceilings and throughout the plant itself.
Design expertise, coupled with excellence in manufacturing and installation would be required to overcome the significant changes posed by this project. Our team at Capcon Engineering has an international reputation as established specialists in Siphonic Drainage. And with this in mind, we were awarded the contract to design, build, and install the siphonic drainage solution required for this large-scale plant.
With our own first-class manufacturing facility in Maynooth, Co. Kildare, we can then take our customised designs and begin to produce the hardware required to set our solution in motion. For this project, over 2,000m of HDPE pipe work was prefabricated in advance, and as with any products made in a factory setting, a higher quality and better performing solution is guaranteed compared with attempting to produce the same piping on-site. It also means we could reduce the time spent on-site, which in the context of this project was crucial. On a given day, this site was densely populated with trades, engineers, and technicians across all disciplines so keeping time on-site to a minimum was crucial.
When it came to installation, collaboration was once again a key issue. With significant traffic and activity on-site, sequencing always plays a major role in large-scale construction projects. Where possible, we worked closely with other contractors, understanding their schedules, access requirements, and more – building our installation plan around our partners, just as they did with our team. And within this challenging environment, our expert ream set to work, hanging 2000m of piping.
Our crews began by hanging all the grounds required and then hoisted our prefabricated pipework into position which were fixed to our grounds.
Following on from this we used electrofusion couplings to join the pre-fabricated pipe work and to connect to the siphonic outlets, which we supplied to the roofing contractor to install. Our co-ordination skills were well and truly tested throughout and we are happy to report that all deadlines and requirements were met on time and on schedule.