COVID-19: Plant engineering in critical times
Line pipe engineering for vaccine production plant
The construction of the production facilities for the COVID-19 vaccine mRNA-1273 was undertaken as part of the Peregrine project in Visp. The production facility for the vaccine, which is subsequently to be distributed worldwide, was built in the MC1 building at Lonza’s Ibex biopark. The contract awarded to AZI (joint venture comprising the two companies Zauner Anlagentechnik GmbH and Inra Group AG) included the delivery and assembly of the pipes and supports for black and high-purity utilities required for the vaccine plant, as well as support with the commissioning of the production facilities.
Line pipe engineering under extreme time pressure
The specifications were very ambitious. While an average of nine months are scheduled for the prefabrication and installation of projects of comparable scope, three months had been planned for the Peregrine project.
In September 2020, the procurement and provision of the required materials and personnel was initiated, which was immediately followed by the start of prefabrication. In order to realise the required installation peaks in excess of 1,500 metres of pipes per week, more than 200 employees were mobilised, working in a three-shift operation from Monday to Sunday and covering work fronts around the clock.