Friday, 30 June 2017

Martin Richardson, ABB's Water Framework Manager, writes: A water company recently picked my brains about upgrading its pump system. It already had a number of variable speed drives (VSDs) on its site and asked if these could be reused or replaced?

It was obvious that replacing the 55 kW VSDs would be costly. However, looking at the site, I found that the VSDs had been operating in a clean environment and had also been well maintained. Although ten years old, the VSDs needed minimum attention: just a straightforward cleaning of the filters and drive cabinet and a new fan.

This was good news for the company - refurbishing the VSDs cost only around 10-15 percent of the purchase price of a new drive.

Replacing, upgrading or retrofitting installed VSDs or electrical motors is often prompted by the need for pumping stations to increase their capacity, to serve a growing local population.

As with our customer above, this provides a good opportunity to look at how the existing VSDs can be refurbished and reused in the new system, at a fraction of the cost of buying a new unit.

You could keep the existing cabinet and framework and simply upgrade or retrofit specific parts – the result is lower capital costs and savings on installation and commissioning time too.

To discover more ways to improve the life of existing assets, visit ABB’s dedicated reliability webpage.

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