Trends and challenges in pumping station design.

Manuela Escarameia, Rob Wild, Ian Willoughby

Friday 3 july 2015

11:15 - 11:30h at Africa (level 0)

Themes: (T) Special session, (ST) Design of intake stations

Parallel session: 15D. Special session: Design of intake stations

This paper identifies some trends and challenges associated with the design of pumping stations, based on HR Wallingford’s experience in the design, review and (numerical and scale) modelling of these structures. With the recent growth in the power and desalination markets, changes in design philosophy appear to have led to ever larger pumping stations. From a hydraulics point of view, this can pose challenges with regard to the size required for physical models or the need to use partial (or even) incomplete models in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) studies. Other technical trends have also been identified relating to smaller pumping stations such as the number and size of pumps (e.g. use of larger individual pumps for cooling water systems together with small pumps for reverse osmosis or make-up water, and the lack of off-duty pumps to offer spare capacity). Implications on the assessment and physical modelling of the hydraulic performance of these pumping stations will be discussed. Operational issues that can seriously impact on the performance of pumping stations and present a real challenge will also be discussed, including stoppages and the inadequate protection of intake pipes during construction leading to sedimentation problems. The paper will also touch on commercially related pressures faced by hydraulic designers including tight schedules and budgetary constraints. The impact these issues can have on the technical design advice provided by consultants will be explored.