Menteroda-Wipperdorf leach pipeline put into operation

With the commissioning of the leach pipeline, another milestone for the "Salt Load Control South Harz" was realised - G.E.O.S accompanied the 5-year planning phase and 2-year construction period

On 7 September 2021, the newly constructed Menteroda-Wipperdorf leach pipeline was symbolically put into operation at the control room at the Menteroda reservoir in the presence of numerous representatives from politics and business.

The construction of the leaching pipeline had become necessary with the foreseeable end of the flooding of a cavern of the local potash mine through the underground discharge of tailings water. Approximately 45 million tonnes of residues from the former Volkenroda potash mine were deposited on the waste rock pile in Menteroda. With the commissioning of the leaching pipeline, the leachate that continues to accumulate there over the long term will now be channelled to the central tailings pond in Wipperdorf in an environmentally friendly way.

During the planning phase, G.E.O.S took over all project planning and technical equipment services. In addition, G.E.O.S. was responsible for landscape conservation planning, design surveying, public relations support and land acquisition. During the construction phase, G.E.O.S. was responsible for site management and local construction supervision as well as planning services during construction.

The pipeline, which is 13.5 kilometres long in total, was planned and constructed with due regard to conservation, ecological and pedological aspects as well as many other third-party requirements. Around 12 kilometres of the pipeline were built using the cut-and-cover method. Nine boreholes were drilled to cross waterways as well as roads and jumps in the terrain, for example under the Halle-Kassel railway line, to cross under the Wipper river and to overcome an approximately 100 metre high elevation jump at the so-called Dün-Kante. The pipeline is state of the art using a very high-quality plastic service pipe and is permanently monitored for leaks along its entire length. A total of 20 storage, control and transfer stations were built for the operation of the leaching pipeline.