Topley Pike Mine
The plant needed to be modified due to problems relating to unplanned maintenance and failures. Moreover, there was a need to improve the general operational efficiency of the plant, the existing pumps of which were powered by a diesel generator. Sites had been experiencing high failure rates with expensive repair costs – plans to increase flow rate and remain operational throughout the year had been proposed. The size of the submersibles required a NPSH of 3-4 metres positive inlet pressure, which could only be achieved by lowering the pumps to a submerged position that drew rocks and heavy solids up from the bottom of the bed. By using the pumps above this level, cavitation was being experienced.
A solution was required to reduce downtime/maintenance costs and expensive failures. When a conventional submersible motor fails, it is not always economically to repair the motor when compared to the cost of buying a new pump.
Rather than replacing the old pump for a new one, a policy to look at reducing overall LCC at the site was implemented, reducing obsolescence from scrap and improving efficiency to allow the plant to be more flexible.
With Caprari’s linehsaft pump, the motor can be easily maintained above water level. The pump was able to absorb less power at higher heads, reducing overall running costs and routine maintenance costs.
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