ABB is supplying a $290m control system to integrate the largest seawater desalination plant in the southern hemisphere into the Western Australia water network.

The Perth Seawater Desalination Plant will feed the 700km Goldfields Pipeline, the longest potable water pipeline in the world, which is also an ABB project.

Scheduled for completion in December 2006, the plant in Western Australia will feed 45 gigalitres of drinking water a year, or 130 million litres a day, into the state’s integrated water system. According to ABB, the project will boost the dwindling water supplies in one of the largest states in the world and guarantee 17 per cent of Western Australia’s current water needs, regardless of rainfall or drought.

ABB is supplying a network control system based on its MicroSCADA and RTU560 technology to enable the water produced at the desalination plant to flow into the Perth water distribution network.

The solution includes upgrading the existing MicroSCADA control system with new functionality. This will include profiling and cascade PID (Proportional-Integral-Derivative) control across multiple remote sites and fallback communications systems, as well as remote monitoring and control of pressure, flow and other functions.