Enviro Liner & Arctic Liner - In-situ Oilsands Operation

LOCATION: Fort McMurray, Alberta

TIMEFRAME: July, 2002

PRODUCT: Enviro Liner®, Arctic Liner®, HDPE

PROJECT PARTNERS: Owner: SuncorInstaller: Layfield  

Background Information and Challenges

In July 2002, Suncor approached Layfield to install an Oil Tank farm, a Produced Water Tank Farm, a Disposal Water Pond and a Retention Pond for their firebag in-situ oilsands operation. Installation was scheduled to start in November and installation of the ponds had to be completed by March. Layfield worked closely with the owner and engineer to select and install the appropriate materials for the project.


Layfield recommended lining the oil tank farm and produced water tank farm with Arctic Liner and Enviro Liner, respectively, complete with a heavy LP10 geotextile underlay and overlay. Under the tank pads, portions of the geotextiles were sewn to facilitate the tank pad construction sequencing.

Keeping seaming machines operating during cold temperatures was a challenge. To isolate harsh winter conditions during seaming operations, Layfield custom-built long hoarding structures isolating personnel working on the seams from the extreme ambient temperature.

Maintaining progress and keeping overnight snow accumulation in mind was also a big consideration. In order to ensure that the installation of the ponds was completed on schedule, a crew of over 20 personnel was utilized during peak deployment periods. This larger than usual crew size was required to ensure the safety of the installation personnel during extreme winter conditions.


As an added measure of quality assurance, Layfield performed an innovative electronic leak location survey upon the completion of the project to pinpoint potential leaks in the primary geomembrane. The electrical leak location survey detects electrical paths through the liner caused by water or moisture migration through a discontinuity in the liner. If a discontinuity (either a leak or an electrical ground) is present in the liner, electrical current will flow through the discontinuity.

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