Oberengadin Hospital, CH

Renovation of Oberengadin Hospital and staff living quarters

Ensuring the quality of drinking water is a primary concern in a hospital environment. Europe’s highest altitude acute-care hospital at Oberengadin, Switzerland selected a Polybutene-1 drinking water distribution system for the renovation of its medical and staff facilities.

PB-1 case study provided by courtesy of GF Piping Systems


The new INSTAFLEX cold water manifold uses Polybutene-1 pipes and fittings.

The new INSTAFLEX cold water manifold uses Polybutene-1 pipes and fittings.

Oberengadin Hospital – providing acute-care for the region

Located in the Upper Engadine Valley (or Oberengadin), the region offers a multitude of possibilities for leisure and work. This is one of the most beautiful landscapes in Switzerland and attracts thousands of sports enthusiasts every year. The many sports activities, such as skiing, climbing and biking, can be challenging – even for the very fit.

Where the body is pushed to extremes, accidents can and often do happen. The hospital in Oberengadin specializes in sports injuries. In addition, it offers a complete range of health care services for all guests and people living in the region. The roughly 300 jobs at the hospital make it the largest employer in Engadine.

A proven drinking water distribution system

Included in the hospital renovation were such highly sensitive and critical areas as the maternity ward, laboratory, operating rooms and the intensive-care unit, which not only called for high-quality and reliable products, but also necessitated keeping the hospital up and running during all the renovation work. For the constructional measures, the high-altitude hospital relied on the proven corrosion-free water distribution system from GF Piping Systems.

Polybutene-1 piping systems for best quality drinking water

The hygienic, all-plastic pipe system is made from Polybutene-1 (PB-1) and was designed for demanding applications with the highest quality requirements. From distributing the water and regulating circulation with JRG Legiotherm to the tapping points, high-performance Polybutene-1 components, including pipes, fittings and valves, were specified for the hospital renovation.

In terms of ensuring a long service life and reliable water distribution, the corrosion and incrustation-free Polybutene-1 system was clearly favoured over the previously used galvanized steel pipes. In addition to proactively preventing breakage in the pipeline, the customer particularly appreciated the high cost-efficiency thanks to the long lifetime of the product, as well as the noise reducing effect and installation and operational flexibility offered by the PB-1 piping system.

Maintaining hospital operations by renovating in stages

The water pipes and hot and cold water distribution were refurbished in the hospital building and staff accommodations which comprised 56 beds for patients, 100 studios, 14 deluxe apartments and 25 apartments. The step-by-step renovation demanded very professional and precise planning. The flow of drinking water had to be guaranteed day and night ensuring uninterrupted medical care. By using corrosion-free, light weight Polybutene-1 piping, renovation in sections was possible and INSTAFLEX was the system of choice allowing the construction to proceed efficiently and successfully.

GF Piping Systems

GF Piping Systems is one of three companies within the Georg Fischer group and a leading supplier of plastic and metal pipe systems with a global market presence. The GF Piping Systems portfolio offers connection technology, fittings, fixtures, sensors and pipes for the treatment and distribution of water as well as the safe transport of industrial fluids and gases. GF Piping Systems supplies leading innovative technical solutions for domestic engineering applications, the chemical process industry, food & beverage, life sciences, the microelectronics, shipbuilding, energy, water and gas supply industries as well as potable water treatment.

GF Piping Systems uses Polybutene-1 for its INSTAFLEX system and is committed to the use of Polybutene (PB-1) as a technically advanced and versatile material for piping systems applications.

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Polybutene-1 is often referred to as Polybutene, Polybutylene, PB-1 or PB.

Polybutene-1 is not sold by PBPSA members for use in pipe applications intended for use in North America, and those parties require their customers or distributors not to sell products made from PB-1 into pipe applications for North America.