Installing a variable speed drive (VSD) to the creature habitats’ water aeration system at SEA LIFE Weymouth has allowed the resident sea animals to enjoy a quieter, cleaner and greener environment. The centre will also benefit from lower operating costs and a reduction in energy usage.
The ABB drive was one of two previously deployed on a sea pump application. It was subsequently determined that only one drive was needed, freeing up the second to be used elsewhere. With the help of ABB Value Provider, IDS, the park identified an aeration system's blower used to oxygenate water within the habitats housing the attraction’s thousands of aquatic residents, as a candidate for repurposing the VSD.
Following the retrofit, the VSD enabled a 10 percent reduction of the blower's motor speed, resulting in an energy saving of £839 per year. By finely controlling the valves on the air lines running to each tank, the park's staff can adjust the pressure depending on a display’s occupants. The blower now runs quieter than before, helping to create a more pleasant environment for guests viewing the animals.
A rapid installation and commissioning lasting approximately one hour ensured no disruption of the air supply, assuring the safety of the animals. Blaise Ford, Managing Director, IDS, says: “This was an enjoyable project to work on as it’s not every day that we get to work with seals, stingrays and penguins. However, at the same time the pressure was on to get the job done quickly to ensure an uninterrupted supply of air for the habitats. The installation went swimmingly!”
The project reflects SEA LIFE Weymouth and its operator Merlin Entertainments’ commitment to ensuring that energy efficiency and carbon reduction are at the heart of its operations, as Dare Ilori, Group Head of Sustainability, explains: “Sustainability is a fundamental part of our values at Merlin Entertainments, and this project was not so much about saving money, but about searching for every opportunity we possibly can to improve the energy efficiency of our operations, and to protect our planet and the creatures within our oceans. Every saving we can make is worthwhile, however small.”
Merlin Entertainments operates a wide range of attractions and theme parks across Europe, including Alton Towers Resort, LEGOLAND Windsor, and The lastminute.com London Eye.
The 7-acre SEA LIFE Weymouth attraction comprises an outdoor park, which includes playgrounds and conservation areas, and the indoor aquarium, which features thousands of sea animals from all over the planet, from seals and sharks to turtles and tropical fish.
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About Merlin Entertainments
Merlin Entertainments is a global leader in location-based, family entertainment. As Europe's Number 1 and the world's second-largest visitor attraction operator, Merlin operates over 135 attractions, 21 ho-tels and 6 holiday villages in 24 countries and across 4 continents.
Merlin’s purpose is to deliver memo-rable experiences to its millions of guests around the world, through its iconic brands and multiple at-traction formats, and the commitment and passion of its employees.
See www.merlinentertainments.biz for more information and follow on Twitter @MerlinEntsNews.
About SEA LIFE and the SEA LIFE Trust
SEA LIFE is the world’s largest family of aquariums, proudly delivering amazing discoveries around the world. From breath-taking underwater tunnels to incredible up-close encounters, guests can dive into the ocean world without getting wet.
Welcoming more than 20 million guests each year to over 50 aquariums and six sanctuaries, SEA LIFE cares for over 180,000 creatures living in incredible themed habitats.
SEA LIFE has a vision of oceans that are healthy, protected, and full of diverse, wonderful animals and works together with its partner charity, the SEA LIFE TRUST. Their joint focus is to protect these oceans and the amazing marine life within them.
The SEA LIFE Trust owns and operates marine wildlife sanctuaries (including the world’s first Beluga Whale Sanctuary in Iceland), runs inspiring conservation campaigns and funds projects and education programmes that champion the need to protect our oceans.
Through its global BREED, RESCUE, PROTECT programme and dedicated Conservation, Welfare and Engagement team, SEA LIFE’s team of expert marine biologists pioneer global breeding projects which may one day provide a lifeline to the ocean’s endangered species, as well as nursing sick creatures back to health and returning them to the wild. If they can’t survive in the wild, they are given a safe home for life.
For more information on the work SEA LIFE and the SEA LIFE Trust does in protecting our oceans, visit www.visitsealife.com and www.sealifetrust.org.