Specialist pump hire company Exsel Pumps provided a 1,150 l/s (4,150 m3/h) sewage over-pumping solution to allow a major pipe relining operation on a 900 mm diameter sewer. The sewer was being fed from a terminal pumping station 3 km away via a 700 mm rising main. Thousands of properties could have been affected if the system did not work effectively.
Exsel considered a number of options for the pumping set up but soon established that there was an opportunity to save significant energy costs by ethically considering the whole life cost of the temporary works. By pre-engineering the solution Exsel was able to provide larger diameter pipework that allowed a by-pass route that did not impact on the usual flow conditions. With planning and technical expertise, Exsel was also able to provide the boosting capability calculated to be needed during adverse weather conditions. Coupled with Exsel’s unique PLC control equipment providing generator control on demand, the energy savings pre-engineered were significant.
The by-pass pipework was connected to the rising main allowing the normal gravity flow to pass the temporary pumping system. The pressure was monitored and the duty pump was called for when the pressure in the system increased when more than one pump was operating at the terminal pumping station. The pump was therefore boosting the liquid through the discharge pipe run. Because it was a closed system, the required flow was a critical factor and Exsel provided a full back up capability in case of any failure.
Exsel provided two 500mm diameter discharge surface mounted electric driven pumps connected in parallel. Each pump was housed in a 20ft container and was capable of providing the duty flow and solids handling necessary for the pumping operation. The pumpsets both had individual dedicated PLC control containers with variable speed drives. What was unique about this application was the PLC control capability that allowed Exsel to start the main generator on pumping demand through pressure sensors and if necessary, its back-up generator, such that the large 500kvA generators were not running continuously.
The flanged steel pipework installed by the Exsel Team was 800 mm diameter with a discharge of just over a challenging 0.55 km in length. By using larger diameter pipe as opposed to using smaller diameters, as normally found in UK hire fleets, the fuel savings could be achieved by not having to continuously run pumps to overcome the friction losses. The pipework route required the installation to be non-obtrusive with pedestrian pathways and three road crossings, (maintaining heavy vehicular access), leading through an industrial estate and an area of housing. The installation was completed ahead of schedule and was aided by specialist handling equipment developed by Exsel that provides a faster and significantly safer installation process.
All key aspects of the installation were remotely monitored through mobile phones and laptops. Alarms provided via SMS to key personnel based on programmed notification levels. In particular, the flow and pressure were constantly monitored, as were generator and pump running characteristics.
The customer and the end client commented that they had not seen the level of technology and equipment supplied like this before for temporary works. The genuine and ethical solution successfully completed by the Exsel Team ensured a safe and effective over pump allowing for critical works to be completed within the planned schedule.
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