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CITY OF PALMYRA UPGRADES TO PRIMEX® WATER CONTROLS; ACHIEVES MULTIPLE BENEFITS

When the City of Palmyra in Northeastern Missouri decided to upgrade its water distribution system in 2015, careful planning was paramount. The city staff wanted to ensure the upgrade went smoothly and there was no interruption of water service to Palmyra’s 3,500 residents. Palmyra ultimately selected the PRIMEX municipal water control solution manufactured by SJE-Rhombus® for its quality, reliability and compatibility with existing equipment.


SJE-Rhombus, a leading provider of water control solutions in North America, supplied the original Healy-Ruff™ water control system installed by Palmyra in 1973. Although several upgrades had been completed over the years, the city’s high-service pump controls were original, and there was concern that they could fail at any time due to their age and other factors.


Palmyra’s city staff was rightfully apprehensive when it came time to upgrade its high-service pump controls, which are the lifeblood of any water system. Without these pumps, the water produced at the plant could not be delivered to customers. Typically, replacing the pump control power equipment would require an extended plant shutdown. To complicate matters further, there had been several system upgrades within the high-service pump control panel over the past 20 years. If the new pumps and system were not properly designed or installed, an expensive and extended water service interruption would occur. Fortunately, existing upgrades had been provided by a PRIMEX company that maintained excellent documentation of the system upgrades over the years. This information proved to be invaluable as the project came to life.


Klingner & Associates was contracted to design the system, which included upgrading the operator control with an easy-to-use color touchscreen, replacing the analog radio communication system and installing new high-service pump power equipment. Hydro-Kinetics, a local PRIMEX representative, provided unique process and equipment knowledge due to involvement with the previous projects and many years of providing local equipment service and support.


PRIMEX’s Engineered Solutions Team, Klingner & Associates, and Hydro-Kinetics combined their process knowledge, equipment expertise and engineering talents to design a unique approach to solving the challenges associated with this upgrade. They worked closely with the Palmyra Water Department operators throughout the multi-month design phase.


Once the installation began, the control system upgrade took just two weeks to complete. It was finished on-time and not one city resident lost water supply. 


“The decision to install the PRIMEX system really worked for us,” said Ben West, Palmyra Water Plant Operator. “We were so impressed with how smooth the installation went and just as pleased that the water supply was totally uninterrupted. We are incredibly happy with the numerous enhancements we’ve gained from installing this new system as an upgrade to our original system.” West also says that it’s a big benefit that both PRIMEX and Hydro-Kinetics have knowledgeable staff to provide support if it’s needed for any aspect of the city’s water system.


Unique System Installation Approach

  • The new control panel was designed for use as the temporary control during demolition of the existing panel. Once demolition was completed, the new panel was permanently mounted with minimal effort. This approach minimized downtime and further reduced the risk of water service interruption to customers.
  • The new high-service pump power equipment and controls were integrated into a single motor control center lineup, reducing installation time because field interconnections between a separate control cabinet and power equipment were not required.
  • The single motor control center lineup approach allowed the equipment to be shipped in single sections so it could be assembled in tight quarters.
  • The enclosure layout was designed with existing conduit and equipment locations in mind. By reusing existing conduit and wire, the team saved significant installation time and expense.
  • The solution was designed to fit within the limited space available in the existing facility.
  • The control section was oriented so instrumentation did not have to be moved.
  • Operator interface devices were placed for easy viewing from key spots in the building.

 

New System Features and Benefits

  • The new controls are customized to the water department’s specific requirements, providing continuity between the old and new systems and requiring less staff training.   
  • Existing PRIMEX controls are upgraded from analog to digital to ensure increased system security and future part availability.
  • A new 10-inch, color touchscreen provides the operators with a simple way to control all elements of the system from the plant or the water operator’s office.
  • The new touchscreen provides “at a glance” process information.
  • The integrated solution meets the engineering design requirement for a single-source system to ensure easy troubleshooting and future upgrades.
  • The system can be upgraded easily with internet-enabled remote monitoring and control because it has full-featured, open-architecture SCADA and PLC functionality.  



GARRETT COUNTY, MD CASE STUDY

When the Department of Public Works for Garrett County, Maryland, wanted to replace a number of its lift stations and controls, the team wanted replacements that would offer safety features, cost savings and additional conveniences for their workers.

 

With these needs in mind, Garrett County selected the Arc Armor® control system from PRIMEX.  The Arc Armor® control systems provides a safe and energy-efficient solution for optimum pump control in municipal lift station applications.

 

In terms of safety, the Arc Armor enclosure (a key piece in an Eco Smart Station® system) reduces the risk of injury resulting from electric shock and exposure to arc flash.  Four individual compartments separate the high voltage incoming power main disconnect, the high voltage motor controls, the low voltage control components and the incoming conduit gas isolation zone.  A service disconnect is included, eliminating the need for separate main disconnect.  The motor control compartment features a voltage indicator to indicate when high voltage is present; and locks the operator out with an electrical interlock.  The control compartment provides safe access for all frequency accessed operator devices (controller, switches, lights, etc.).

 

In terms of cost savings, the Energy View® controller provides pump speed control, efficiency monitoring and efficiency auto-tuning, all offering cost savings potential.  A white powder-coated stainless steel enclosure, with its solar reflective characteristics, significantly reduces the temperature.  This provides cost savings when VFDs are used, allowing for a lower cost cooling requirement.

 

In terms of convenience, features includes LED interior lighting that eliminates the need for operators to hold flashlights while working at night; three-point latches, all pad-lockable, providing strong seals; terminal blocks are raised and tilted, making them easier to see and allow for better connections when wiring.

 

Those features were key in Garrett County's decision to purchase the Arc Armor system, as was the convenience of set-up.  "You just set it down, provide power to it, hook up the pump and sensors, and it's ready to go," stated Adam Conover, Business Development Manager for PRIMEX.

 

Since installation, Garrett County has been happy with the results.  "They not only liked the safety features of the Arc Armor System, but the features which provide their workers with extra convenience," said Conover.

 

In addition, the return on investment (ROI) will be very fast.  "The Energy View controller is providing them with a lot of savings each month, about 25% across all of the stations," said Conover.  "All of those savings end up going back into their operating budget at the end of the year."  Because the county doesn't need to run its drives at full speed, workers are not having to go out and do as much maintenance on their pumps.  That also translates into more cost savings.