Apr 13, 2009

Efficient Pumping

Pumping is a highly energy-intensive process.

The California State Water Project pumps water close to 2,000 ft over the Tehachapi Mountains, making it the largest single user of energy in the state. It consumes an average of 5 billion kWh per year and accounts for 2% to 3% of California’s electricity consumption, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

While pumps can be huge energy hogs, the right technology can also offer facilities energy-saving opportunities, as well as longer equipment life and lower maintenance costs.

With energy costs on the rise, water and wastewater facilities across the country are looking to lower their electricity costs. Many have upgraded pump stations by replacing existing magnetic-coupling drives with variable frequency drives (VFDs). Initial costs of VFDs can be relatively expansive depending on the system size and complexity. The payback period, however, is rapid—ranging from just a few months to less than three years—and the benefits are long term.

There are various incentives available for energy-efficient equipment. Additionally, water and wastewater facilities that are looking to decrease their energy consumption by upgrading existing less-efficient systems can take advantage of different funding options.

In response to the ever-increasing interest in existing and new pumping system practices, the staff of WWD is pleased to bring you its annual supplement publication, Pump Source. Now in its seventh year, Pump Source continues to offer a wide variety of articles, which offer valuable insight into relative and detailed pump applications.

Beyond Pump Source, WWD is also the organizer and co-sponsor of PumpTec 2009, the 5th Annual Pump Theory and Hands on Maintenance and Reliability Conference, to be held Sept. 14 to 15, 2009, at the Holiday Inn Select in Norcross, Ga. Attendees will learn how to assemble and troubleshoot pumps to improve reliability and extend their life. Efficiency and energy savings will also be discussed. More information is available at www.pumpconference.com.

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