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Control Techniques offers the Intelligent Pump Control (IPC) system as a comprehensive answer to ragging, a problem suffered by water companies where pumps in wastewater systems become blocked.

Manual clearing is a costly and unpleasant task, requiring a maintenance team and frequently a crane.

Downtime may extend to several days, during which time the back-up systems are under additional pressure.

A total system failure can result in effluent leakage with implications for the environment, human health, clean-up costs and breaches of legislation.

Control Techniques offers the Intelligent Pump Control (IPC) system as a comprehensive answer to ragging, delivering measurable improvements in pump reliability, uptime and performance.

As well as saving money in operating expenses, IPC system installations have also produced energy savings of up to 15 per cent due to the improved running efficiency of the pumps.

Unlike competitor’s systems that measure the motor’s nominal current, which can give an error of up to 30-40 per cent for required effective monitoring of impending ragging, IPC measures ’live’ active current in real time, on-board the drive.

As soon as IPC sees a change in the active current set profile, an automated cleansing cycle is initiated to clear the pump impeller.

Over three years Control Techniques has built up a successful base of IPC applications with several of the Major UK water companies as well as installations in Ireland.

Control Techniques’ IPC system accurately monitors pump performance, including flow and pump speed where appropriate.

The live data is compared to measured values taken during commissioning, plus expected pump profile characteristics.

Any out-of-profile performance is instantly detected, giving an early warning indication of ragging.

Should the pump’s out-of-profile performance extend the profile settings, an automatic drive-based cleansing cycle is initiated to clear the pump impeller.

The system is totally embedded within the drive itself, eliminating the need for external programming (PLC), monitoring or control equipment.

Control Techniques has developed two levels of IPC functionality; IPC Lite and IPC Pro, to meet the needs of the broadest range of pump applications.

IPC Lite provides ragging detection and cleansing at low cost on pumps rated at less than 132kW.

IPC Pro provides full-featured multi-pump control for pumps rated to 1.9MW, with anti-ragging programme, duty control, fault status and back-up, ’dry run’ protection and cleansing routines.

It is compatible with telemetry systems and has a watchdog alarm feature.

Options include HMI, which provides customers with a clear window on the pumping control operations and also an instant data-logging facility for pump efficiency and energy usage; Ethernet TCP/IP-based solutions for remote monitoring and operation; and drive-based remote telemetry station capability.

As well as detecting and preventing ragging, IPC systems also provide several other intelligent performance optimisation functions, such as surge prevention to protect rising mains power and wear monitoring of pumps.

The system also detects low flow in dry run conditions.

In the unusual event of a major blockage that cannot be automatically cleared, a system lock-out and sounding of a telemetry alarm prevents successive cleansing routines from occurring in order to protect the pump.

Control Techniques

Control Techniques, an Emerson Industrial Automation company, is a world leader in the design, production and marketing of electronic variable speed drives for the control of electric motors. Our strategy is to concentrate on delivering drives and servo products that enhance the productivity of our customers’ machines and processes.

We operate through a global network of drive and application centres that both distribute product and add value by building our drive products into custom designed systems and by offering the highest levels of customer service.

Our Control Techniques drive centres also provide us with invaluable feedback and market intelligence so that we can further improve our products and service. This customer focused strategy will enable us to continue to grow profitably.

Our competitive edge is based on our unique focus on drives, our strength in research and development, our investment low-cost manufacturing and an effective worldwide marketing strategy.

Emerson Industrial Automation, a business of Emerson, is a global technology provider that enables productivity, efficiency and quality gains for customers across a spectrum of industries. Our products include alternators, electric motors and drives, electrical distribution devices and mechanical power transmission, fluid automation and ultrasonic joining solutions. Visit our website for more details.

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