APA VNIE Pipeline Project

About the Project

The Victorian Northern Interconnect Expansion (VNIE) Project involves looping sections of the existing 260 km Victorian Northern Interconnect (VNI)

Pipeline to increase capacity, as well as increasing compression capacity north and south of the VNI. The VNI pipeline runs from Wollert, north of

Melbourne to Barnawatha, south of the Murray River, and the expansion project involves looping 62 per cent of the pipeline. The looping and compression project is underway and will be completed in stages.

Qube Energy’s Logistics Solution

Qube Energy was contracted by BAO Australia for the project management of Tranche 1 and 2 of the VNIE Pipeline Project. This included customs

clearance, stevedoring at Qube’s South Wharf facility in the Port of Melbourne, storage and stockpile management, and transport of the pipe to the lay

down areas at Wallan, Tallarook and Benalla in central Victoria. Qube was also separately contracted by APA to unload pipe into the lay down areas.

Watch Qube Energy's logistics solution for the APA VNIE Pipeline Project

Stevedoring Large Shipments

The cargo of pipe reached Australia in four shipments, with two shipments for each tranche.

Tranche 1

  • First Shipment AAL Hong Kong – 32 km of pipe/ 3166 Tonne / 1564 Pieces

  • Second Shipment AAL Pusan – 38.5 km of pipe / 3116 Tonne / 2130 Pieces

Tranche 2

  • First shipment AAL Newcastle – 51.9km of pipe/4309 Tonne / 2887 Pieces

  • Second Shipment AAL Brisbane – 47.5km of pipe / 3925 Tonne / 3925 Pieces

Qube Energy operates the facility at South Wharf and managed the wharf lay down, which meant that discharge could occur at any time with no

interruption to urban traffic. Qube also stevedored the vessel which allowed for a well-planned and open communication operation.


For the first time, Qube Energy used the Dhatec Pipe Stop system for stockpiling of line pipe at its wharf facility. This is a very secure, safe and efficient system. Sections of track not required were removed once line pipe had been moved out, or moved to smaller sections with multiple access points, meaning that lay down area was quickly reclaimed.

Load out

A number of procedures were used including the use of the Vacuworx vacuum lift system to load-out line pipe. This system was attached to Qube’s forklifts and other equipment meaning no additional machinery needed to be hired for the project.

The load out of pipe was co-ordinated around curfew hours to enable trucks to deliver multiple loads in one day.


Over 680 truckloads were required to shift the pipe to construction sites in northern regional Victoria. The pipe was transported by Qube Energy on extendable trailers with between eight and eleven trailer loads delivered to respective sites daily.

Specialised Products

The unloading, storage and transport processes required Qube to use specialised products for the integrity of the pipe, including;

  • In-house designed coated pipe hooks to protect coating integrity;

  • Specialised spreaders to lift maximum number of pipe safely and efficiently from both the vessels and mobile cranes; and,

  • use of the Vacuworx vacuum lift for quick load out of line pipe from storage onto the trucks for transport.