The Audebo pump station is near Lammefjord, a body of water situated on the north side of the city of Holbæk, in the region of Zeeland in Denmark. The station is located there to drain surface water and prevent flooding in the local low-lying and dammed areas, including fields used for cultivating vegetables such as potatoes. The surface water is then pumped to the Lammefjord via several water canals. This is especially critical during rainy days when the risk of flooding increases.
The Audebo pump station is operated by Lammefjordens Dike and Pump association. To help ensure reliable pumping operations at all times the association installed three ABB ACQ580 water and wastewater drives in the station, in collaboration with the pump manufacturer. Thanks to the built-in pump functionalities in the drives, the water flow has been secured without additional need for supervision. The drive automatically starts the pump if the water level rises.
Built-in pump features
The sensorless flow calculation is a standard function in the ACQ580 drive. By entering the values for the pump, the drive is able to estimate the actual flow of water. This is an advantage because the sensorless flow calculation function eliminates the need for a flow meter, which is a relatively expensive piece of equipment.
Henrik Madsen, the operations manager at Lammefjordens Dike and Pump, highlights the benefit of the flow measurement feature in his work.
"We want to know how much water we are pumping. The drives can, so to speak, take the characteristics of the pumps and by entering geometric lifting heights, you can define how much the pumps deliver via a pressure gauge on the output pipe. This results in a pump performance curve that is fed into the drive. Based on the static pressure head and the pump pressure, the drive can give us a fairly accurate estimate of the cubic meters of water per hour that the pumps deliver.”
These flow rates can be used both for regulatory purposes and for reporting to the municipality, which is a big advantage, emphasizes Henrik Madsen.
An additional feature in the ACQ580 is the “island operation” capability. This means that the VSD can run autonomously if online connection is lost, which provides additional security for the operations.
"Several key routines are built into the drive so that they can continue running independently if the connection is lost. This gives the pumping system a higher level of security and backup, so it can run without access to the external data which normally provides information about how much water needs to be pumped, and how quickly," says Ulrik Vadstrup, sales engineer at ABB.
Reliability is essential
Henrik Madsen is also pleased with the long-standing collaboration with ABB.
"The service support and reliable operations that I have experienced with ABB drives has made my choice easy. If there is a risk that everything is about to drown, I really need to be able to count on the operational reliability of the drives.”
During heavy downpours, the software in the ACQ580 VSD that controls how many pumps must be switched on comes in handy. The need to move water is measured via differential pressure, so the higher the water level is, the faster the pump runs, and when the water reaches a certain level, the next pump is automatically switched on.
The pump features in the drive save time and costs
"Instead of using a standard drive, with the ACQ580 water and wastewater drive you benefit from features that can be used specifically for water handling tasks. The price is basically the same, but you get the targeted water functions that you would otherwise have to pay a programmer to set up. With the ACQ580 drive, they just have to be switched on,” says Ulrik Vadstrup.
The built-in functions in the ACQ580 drives have also been thoroughly tested by ABB, which guarantees that they will work in any conditions. Having the functions in use will free up time for the pump operator from maintaining similar functions in the current controller in use.