Wednesday, 14 December 2016


Peter Myatt, ABB's Channel Manager - Drives, writes: For any organisation, disappointing customers is a definite no-no. And don’t even think of disappointing children who have come to see one of your biggest attractions – ignore the power of Facebook at your peril! Complaints could flood in, however unjustified they might be.

Keeping the customer satisfied was top of the agenda for Colchester Zoo when it suffered a power cut recently. When it tried to restart one of its variable-speed drives at the start of the day, there was no response.

Which was unfortunate, because this VSD drove an ozone pump at the zoo’s popular sea lion enclosure, named Playa Patagonia. This features a 2.5 million litre water tank complete with an underwater glass tunnel which visitors can walk through to see the sea lions swimming. Currently home to five female Patagonian sea lions, the enclosure can hold as many as 12.

The VSD plays a vital role in keeping the sea lion tank clean and the mammals healthy. Ozone is converted from ordinary oxygen in the ozone generator. The ozone is then pumped into the water by the ozone pump, killing bacteria to keep the enclosure healthy.

It was important to get the pump back in operation within 24 hours to maintain the clarity of the water and ensure visitors continued to enjoy an unobstructed view of these popular animals.

Help was at hand in the form of ABB authorised value provider, Gibbons Engineering Group. Just a few hours after being called by Colchester Zoo, engineers from Gibbons had found the fault. A new 22kW drive was put on a van and by lunchtime, the pump was back in action. No problem!

It all goes to show how a good drive vendor’s partner network can keep you in the clear!

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