CAP Industries recently welcomed 19 third year apprentices from Victoria’s Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT) for an introductory training session on pumps and pumping systems. The training was delivered as part of the Irrigation Systems component of NMIT’s Turf Management course - a course aimed at producing highly trained and competent turf specialists via hands-on exposure to latest technologies, methodologies and industry practices.
The decision to include pump training in the course was the initiative of teacher and irrigation professional Mr Mark Burchell. Having worked in the irrigation industry himself for many years, Mr Burchell was keen to ensure his students gained some basic knowledge in the area before heading out into the field. He explains, “The students will undoubtedly come into contact with pumps and pumping systems over the course of their careers. Early exposure can only benefit the students and their employers in the years to come.”
CAP Industries’ Managing Director Bou Spithoven was delighted to be able to present to the group, which included several mature-age students. In fact, Mr Spithoven admits that working with industry to train the next generation of pump users has become somewhat of a personal priority. “Most of us in the pump industry would agree that there is a real need for training. This can be said for both suppliers and users” he explained. CAP Industries’ expertise is well-recognised and according to Mr Spithoven, the company is uniquely placed to share this technical knowledge in a practical, non brand-specific manner.
“Aside from this, I was really pleased to have the opportunity to engage with a group of people who could very likely be tomorrow’s customers” he stated.
The training session was designed to be introductory in nature but most importantly, practical. While the students were introduced to some general theory, the focus was on engaging the students with some real-life cases and examples. The students were also given the opportunity to undertake some hands-on activities using the test bench in the factory.
Mr Burchell was happy with both the approach and the outcome of the training. He stated “the manner in which it was presented was both educational and entertaining with the students walking out with a far greater knowledge on pumps, their roll and abilities.” He continued “I as a teacher hopped back in the bus knowing the value of our trip and our trip was given a rating to the highest standard.”
Specialist recruitment agency, Engineering People, is a company with a keen understanding of the difference people can make - both in the business arena and in their impact on the environment. It is also one of the few recruitment companies in Australia to invest in the use of rainwater as a means of improving its environmental footprint.
The company installed its rainwater tank in mid-2008. In a perfect example of reciprocity, Engineering People then turned to CAP Industries for a pumping solution. CAP Industries’ Marketing Manager Alicia Spithoven explains, “Engineering People had been our preferred supplier of technical and trades staff for a few years. They are particularly thorough in their investigations before submitting staff for consideration, which means they get it spot on first time. We were delighted to have the opportunity to return the favour.”
CAP Industries supplied a RWP pumping system comprised of Lowara HM multistage pump, SuperSimplex E controller and a cartridge filter enclosed in a lockable cabinet. The system is designed to deliver automatic switching between tank water and mains water and is capable of delivering around 50 l/min.
Managing Director of Engineering People, Peter Horsfall is happy with the system stating the decision to go with CAP Industries was not a hard one. “We appreciate CAP Industries as a client and approaching them for a solution was the obvious choice.”
Mr Horsfall stated that the system has operated consistently since installation with no faults or interruption to water supply. “We only have a 3,000 litre tank, but it has never been empty since we installed it,” he explained. While the company has seen a reduction in its water bill, Mr Horsfall highlights that this was not the main motivation for the installation of the rainwater system. “I’d much rather drink fresh drinking water than flush with it.”
Speaking candidly, he admitted that the environmental benefits have far outweighed the financial thus far. “When it comes down to it, it’s nice to know we are doing our bit.”
While the system was primarily installed to flush toilets in the company’s Nunawading office, the team at Engineering People also appreciates the increased autonomy they have gained by having their own water supply. Rainwater is also used by staff to wash company vehicles, clean office windows and to water their plants. Mr Horsfall highlights this autonomy was particularly usefully during recent years when water restrictions saw increased focus from those he jokingly refers to as the ‘water police’.
Other than losing the key to the door of the cabinet, Mr Horsfall has had no problems with the operation or the reliability of his system since its installation 5 years ago. “It works well and keeps the water sparkling fresh – just what you need in the toilet” he stated.
As the name suggests, Engineering People specialises in the placement of engineers, technicians and trades people. The company boasts offices in Melbourne, Nunawading, Sydney, and Virginia (Queensland). For more information, visit their website today.
Spend a few moments ‘talking shop’ at South Australia’s Henschke winery and it soon becomes clear that producing exceptional wine and achieving environmental sustainability are two pursuits that are considered to go hand in hand.
Henschke is a family-owned winery located in the stunning Eden Valley region of the Barossa Valley. It is well-recognised for its efforts to reduce the environmental impact of its operation via initiatives such as the use of organic and biodynamic principles in the vineyard and the collection and reuse of rainwater throughout the winery. And while rainwater use is by no means a new concept, today’s strict industry standards ensure that it would not be practical for Henschke without a reliable filtration system.
Henschke approached local distributor and industry veterans, Graetz Irrigation, to discuss their options. According to Brian Graetz, Manager of Graetz Irrigation the intention was to use rainwater for a range of applications including tank washing, sterilisation of bottles prior to bottling and general domestic use at the cellar door. He explains, “the wide range and the type of applications meant that reliability was absolutely critical.”
Graetz Irrigation worked together with CAP Industries to design and develop a simple yet effective solution capable of meeting the winery’s water quality requirements. The system included two multistage pumps capable of delivering approximately 200 litres a minute. Incoming water is directed via sediment filters at 20 micron, 5 micron and 1 micron and then treated to Ultra Violet (UV) sterilisation. The system is controlled by a MPV control system complete with ABB variable speed drive to maintain constant pressure in the varied demand conditions.
The system was supplied by Graetz Irrigation in 2007 and according to Mr Mark Graetz, Company Secretary at Henschke winery, it still operates in much the same way as it did when it was installed 6 years ago – with one main difference. “We upgraded the system a few years ago to include 3 smaller UV units rather than the one lamp” he explains. The upgrade was undertaken to help minimise the time that the system was offline. “We found that the tube in the UV filter had to be serviced fairly regularly to maintain optimum operation. Having 3 smaller lamps means we can isolate one lamp and service it without having to take the system offline.”
For further information on the award-winning Henschke Winery, please visit www.henschke.com.au
Graetz Irrigation are specialists in irrigation and reticulations systems. The company is located at Nuriootpa and this year celebrates 35 years in the industry. To contact Graetz, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The rugged yet beautiful island nation of Papua New Guinea (PNG) is undeniably one of the worlds more demanding working environments. Lush, tropical temperatures combined with often-remote sites and locations can present specific challenges for both man and equipment – a fact that was highlighted during a recent commissioning trip to the small town of Londolovit.
Londolovit is the largest settlement on the island of Niolam, approximately 900 kilometres north-east of Port Moresby. It supports the nearby Lihir gold mine, which is owned by Australian gold mining giant, Newcrest Mining Limited. The operation employs a combination of residential and fly-in-fly-out personnel, and most of the expatriate mine employees reside at the settlement.
CAP Industries recently travelled to Londolovit to commission a newly installed iCON variable speed control system. According CAP Industries’ Managing Director, Bou Spithoven, the control system was just one part of a new pump station installed to to boost the town’s water supply and provide redundancy for the existing system. “Previously, Londovolit used the same pumps to supply water to both the mine site and to the township. With the installation of the new pumping system, the town has its own dedicated, reliable water supply solution.”
The solution comprised of a turbine pump and an iCON variable speed control system, complete with variable speed drive (VSD) and vibration sensors. Ease of use and the unique, IP65 rating were key factors in the selection of the iCON control system. Mr Spithoven explains “the robust construction of the iCON controller made it ideal for the site conditions at Londolovit. We also upgraded the ventilation in the panel to help protect the drive and other components in the control system.”
Upgrades to the enclosure included the installation of extra large cooling fans and vents and the inclusion of an additional fan to facilitate the release of hot air from the enclosure. The VSD was also oversized. This is a common technique used throughout industry where the potential for overheating is high. Mr Spithoven explains, “by using a slightly larger than necessary drive, your drive will be consistently underloaded, which means it won’t heat up as much.”
Mr Spithoven highlighted that his time in PNG was definitely one of the more memorable site visits he has undertaken to date. “While the conditions were certainly demanding, my time in PNG showed us what a fantastic camaraderie the team from Newcrest have about them. It really made for a positive experience all round” stated Mr Spithoven.
To view further information information on Newcrest’s Lihir Operation visit the Newcrest Mining website.
“I need a test tank, and I need it by the end of the day”… it’s not your standard request for a custom-build job, but for packaging manufacturer, Trimcast Rotomoulders, time was quite literally of the essence.
Trimcast is an Australian-based company specialising in the design and manufacture of quality storage containers. The company recently found itself in need of a means to conduct waterproof testing on one of its containers to comply with a somewhat demanding tender specification.
Operations Manager with Trimcast, Mr Dale Hanrahan, explains “we were working on a tender to supply transit cases to the Australian military. As part of this we needed to simulate 6 hours of continuous rain on the cases, so it was important that whatever solution we came up with gave us a reliable, uninterrupted water supply.”
The CAP Industries team responded immediately, designing and installing a simple yet effective test unit by close of business that day. The system was designed to operate automatically, recirculating water continuously during the testing period to minimise water use and maximise efficiency of the testing process. Main components of the system included a 3000 litre water tank, a Lowara stainless steel HMS pump and 4 spray nozzles. Amiad screen filters (with flush valves) were fitted before the spray jets to remove contaminants from the recirculated water, and a Quickstop Advance float valve installed in the tank enabled the system to be topped up with mains water if necessary.
Trimcast conducted some initial trials overnight to assess the performance of the test unit. “Basically, the transit case was placed in the middle of 4 spray nozzles which were situated to ensure water was hitting the case at the specified rate, pressure and angles” said Mr Hanrahan. “We needed a few minor modifications the following morning which the boys from CAP Industries did immediately and then we were good to go.”
According to CAP Industries’ Managing Director, Bou Spithoven, the project is a great example of how well the CAP Industries team can be mobilised to help customers achieve their goals. Mr Hanrahan agrees. “We were really pleased with the response we got from the team at CAP Industries” he stated. “They understood what we were after and came up with a solution that worked.”
Trimcast is already a major supplier of rotationally moulded transit cases to the Australian Armed Forces and various other defence forces worldwide. While the current tender has not yet been awarded, Mr Hanrahan believes an announcement should not be too far away. “Hopefully we should find out sometime in the next month,” he said.
As for the test unit, Mr Hanrahan highlighted that it has already been used on another job. “We are finding it quite handy to have around, and as it is quite portable, we can pack it away when it is not in use” he explained.
For more information on Trimcast, visit their website.
Ask any golf course superintendent about the challenges they face in their ongoing endeavors to ‘keep the greens green,’ and you will soon come to appreciate the importance of a reliable water supply. In fact, for Thirteenth Beach Golf Course, reliability was the over-riding factor in their recent decision to install an iCONtouch pump controller from CAP Industries.
Thirteenth Beach is a premium golf and residential complex set on Victoria’s stunning Bellarine Peninsula. It features two 18-hole courses – the challenging links-style Beach Course and the more forgiving Creek Course - both of which are maintained by an extensive irrigation system. At the heart of the irrigation system is a pump station comprised of 4 main pumps, capable of delivering up to 80 l/sec (plus a jockey pump).
According to Steve Hewitt, Course Superintendent with Thirteenth Beach, the courses pump station recently came under scrutiny when its aging pump controller became intermittently unreliable. He explains “basically, the controller was old technology. We knew it was time for an upgrade.”
Thirteenth Beach undertook a thorough evaluation of the alternatives available to ensure they had considered their requirements from all angles.
Mr Hewitt highlighted that the decision to invest in the iCONtouch controller was based on several key factors. “The iCONtouch offered everything that we needed from a new control system, including the ability to easily increase from four main pumps to five” he stated. And while the decision to work with CAP industries was aided by the recommendation of Irrigation Consultant, Rainlink Australia, Mr Hewitt explained that the main point of influence was the long term local reliable expertise offered by CAP Industries. “I was not comfortable with the other competitors as they did not offer the same amount of local knowledge and backup service. Bou’s involvement along with the recommendations from Rainlink made the decision-making process a lot easier.”
According to Bou Spithoven, Managing Director with CAP Industries, Thirteenth Beach is an ideal installation to highlight the advantages of the iCONtouch controller. CAP Industries installed a complete control system comprised of the iCONtouch pump controller, three ABB ACS 310 variable speed drives and three Danfoss MCD500 soft starters.
“The system was designed to easily cater for the addition of a fifth main pump,” he explained. “When the time comes, they are ready to go.”
Mr Spithoven highlighted remote communication as another key advantage of the system. “The addition of a modem means that staff at Thirteenth Beach will be alerted via SMS to any faults or alarms in the system. This has the potential to greatly improve the reliability of both the pump and irrigation systems” he stated.
As the primary user of the iCONtouch controller at Thirteenth Beach, Mr Hewitt believes one of its greatest strengths lies in its useability. “I have found it to be extremely user friendly” he said. “It is easy to navigate your way around the screens and I have certainly found it to be extremely easy to adapt to.”
Thirteenth Beach is the official golf course of the Geelong Cats. For bookings or more information, click here.
Morack Golf Course is a picturesque 18 hole public golf course in Melbourne’s outer east. It features lush greens, tees and garden areas that are maintained year round via an extensive automatic watering system fed by the courses own 59 million litre dam.
At the heart of the watering system is a pump station comprised of four main vertical multistage pumps, a smaller jockey pump and an aging variable speed control system.
According to Grant Craig, Course Superintendent with Morack Golf Course, recent years have seen the course face a series of challenges with their pumping system. “We have a few hydraulic issues that we need to keep on top of as well as some challenges caused by our existing pump controller” he explains. “Rather than invest in an expensive upgrade, what we really wanted was a simple, cost-effective means to monitor what was happening so we could take immediate action when and if necessary.”
Mr Craig contacted CAP Industries on the recommendation of a colleague.
CAP Industries assessed the existing pumps and control system. After discussing both the immediate and long-term requirements of the course with Mr Craig, the team installed an EDAC SMS 300 modem into the existing control system. The modem was configured to notify key staff at Morack via SMS should the pump system encounter a fault or alarm.
“This was exactly what we needed” stated Mr Craig. “We can now keep on top of what is going on in the pump shed and act without delay.”
In addition to installing the SMS system, CAP Industries serviced the pumps and installed cooling fans around the control system - all with a view to helping Morack maximise the lifespan of the existing pump station.
Mr Craig is pleased with the outcome, stating “when we talked with CAP Industries, we were really keen to get as much from the existing system that we could. The SMS alerts are proving to be a huge help with this and I can say we are genuinely pleased with the overall result.”
For more information on Morack Golf Course, click here.
Australian-owned leather tannery, Geelong Leather, has shown that environmental responsibility and productivity can work hand in hand, thanks in part to the benefits of an effective radio control system.
Geelong Leather specialises in preparing hides for manufacturers of footwear, bags, wallets and perhaps most importantly, AFL footballs. With factories already located in Geelong, Melbourne, Adelaide and Forbes, the company expanded their operations in 2007 to the New South Wales town of Culcairn.
According to Plant Manger, Mr Jay Stottelaar, the Culcairn site is a working example of the company’s ongoing strive towards sustainability. Based on approximately 700 acres of land, it combines a tannery and a working farm operation. Canola and wheat crops on the farm are irrigated by a combination of dam water and treated wastewater from the tannery. Mr Stottelaar explains “being able to re-use our wastewater to grow our crops is an ideal means for us achieve some of our environmental goals.”
At the heart of the irrigation system are two 30kW pumps – one used to pump wastewater from the tannery, the other pumps water stored in a dam. Crops are irrigated with the treated wastewater via a towable T-L centre pivot irrigator. Dam water is then used to flush the system. If insufficient wastewater is available to meet watering requirements, dam water is used as necessary.
A number of pivot pads were constructed along an existing PVC mainline which stretches up to 1.5kms from the pump site. Mr Stottelaar highlighted, “while the basic operation of the pump system was relatively simple, it was also inefficient as we were doing all of our switching manually”. The company turned to Water Dynamics in Yarrawonga for help with automating the system.
Water Dynamics conducted a thorough assessment of the site. According to Mr Richard Lloyd, Design Consultant with Water Dynamics, while the control system required for automating the pumping operation was fairly straight-forward, Geelong Leather faced a few site-specific issues:
- It was not practical or cost-effective to hardwire controls between the pivot pads and the pumps; and
- While the two pumps were only around 200m apart, the site included a range of existing industrial infrastructure and lots of concrete. This presented difficulties for control wiring between the two pumps.
“It was an ideal application for radio control” stated Mr Lloyd.
Water Dynamics worked together with CAP Industries to deliver a control system that was both effective and easy to use. “We knew that automating the system would deliver huge benefits to Geelong Leather in terms of productivity. However, as there was potential for several operators to be involved in using the system, we needed to be certain that the control system was self-explanatory. This way we could ensure they gained the maximum advantage” explained Mr Lloyd. “I am confident that we achieved that.”
CAP Industries supplied two soft start pump controllers complete with an ELPRO 905U-L radio link between the centre pivot and the pump systems. The 905U-L radio link operates at 900 MHz, is license free and is suitable for up to 10kms (line of sight), or approximately 1km in an interrupted industrial site. The operator is able to select which water supply is required from the pivot point. If wastewater is selected, the pump runs for a set period of time and then automatically switches to dam water to flush the system.
When the pumps time out, the pivot simply stops on low pressure shutdown. If the pivot stops, the system automatically shuts down the appropriate pump.
According to Mr Stottelaar, the system has provided huge gains for Geelong Leather in terms of time saving, maintenance costs and staff efficiency. “Not only has it simplified operation of the system, it has also reduced breakdowns and failures previously caused by manual operation.” He continued, “overall, the system is running very well and we are more than happy with the results.”
The success of this installation highlighted other potential uses for radio control to the engineering team at Culcairn. As a result, a second radio link system was installed to control an existing bore pump used to deliver water to a holding tank, which is then used throughout the tannery. When the tank is full, the bore water is diverted via pneumatically operated valves to top-up the irrigation dam. Mr Stottelaar stated, “again the constraints of an industrial site didn’t allow hard wiring between the pump, tank and dam. The radio system provided the perfect solution.”
For more information on Geelong Leather, visit the Geelong Leather website.
The lead up to summer finds councils and sporting clubs throughout the country facing a common challenge; to reduce water consumption on their sports and playing fields while at the same time keeping them fit for play. Many have chosen to convert their playing surfaces to warm season grasses, such as Couch, Buffalo or Kikuyu. However this, as the saying goes, is only part of the solution.
Warm season grasses are designed to be more water efficient than cool-season turf. However, like most plants, they do require water – particularly while establishing their root systems – to remain viable in the long term.
Since 1994, Irrigation Consultant, Rainlink Australia has been at the forefront of the industry, delivering innovative yet practical irrigation solutions to help their customers ensure the long term viability of their investments. According to Roxene Carroll, Managing Director of Rainlink, “a reliable water supply is crucial to the success of any irrigation system. This is why we investigate the water supply options at the design phase of any project.”
The importance of this was highlighted during a recent project, in which the client intended to support the new irrigation system via mains water supply. Rainlink identified that the supply from mains would be insufficient to meet the demands of the new irrigation system, recommending a booster system be installed to deliver the increased pressure and flow required.
Rainlink turned to CAP Industries for a reliable, cost-effective pumping solution, having worked with the company on a range of projects in the past. CAP Industries supplied a custom-built system complete with Lowara SV multi-stage pump and SPV variable speed pump control system, all mounted in a lockable enclosure.
“The installation went off without a hitch and we are very pleased with the result” said Ms Carroll.
While this project involved the use of mains water, it is important to recognise that water supply options will differ at each site. These include the collection and use of rainwater, stormwater and even recycled water of various different classes. Ultimately it comes down to what is most practical, and perhaps more importantly, sustainable in the long term.
The Devon Park Horse Stud in Victoria’s picturesque Yarra Valley region epitomises thoroughbred breeding at its finest. Privately-owned and operated, the spacious, modern facility relies on its pump system to deliver water to the property’s horses, buildings and any gardens on site.
The existing pumping system at Devon Park, while operational, offered a number of challenges.
Most of these could be attributed to the extensive cabling involved in the system. Damage somewhere along the approximately 1 km of cabling in the system meant pumps had to be operated manually and tank levels continually monitored by staff.
After meeting with Mr Tom Balshaw, Manager at Devon Park, CAP Industries installed and commissioned a point to point radio control solution for the pumping system. Radio control offered a range of advantages for Devon Park Stud including: quick and easy installation, no more maintenance of cables, and most importantly, cost-effective automation of the pumping system.
According to Mr Balshaw, the new control system has greatly improved the overall operation and usability of the pumping system. He explains “it allows for automatic starting and stopping of pumps based on tank water levels, provides clear indications of whether pumps are running, and shows whether the tank is empty or full.” The end result is a not only a significant saving in costs, but also marked improvement in productivity for Mr Balshaw. “It saves me at least an hour a day” he says.
The Pandanas Apartments are without doubt one of Darwin’s most exciting recent infrastructure projects. Rising 28 levels in the heart of Darwin’s CBD, Pandanas Darwin has been described by developers, Gwelo Developments, as a “dynamic mix of residential and serviced apartments, luxurious penthouses, restaurants, retail spaces and a day spa.”.....read more
As an accredited GreenPlumbers® plumber, Aquablock Plumbing in Victoria offers specialised expertise in water conservation – including rainwater harvesting and reuse.
Aquablock began installing the RWP and RWPi series of rainwater pump systems as part of their involvement in Community Water Grants installations throughout Victoria.....read more
McCrackens Water Services in Bayswater, Victoria deliver specialised pumping, water and irrigation services to trade and retail customers in Melbourne’s outer eastern suburbs. Over the past 18 months, the team has sold and installed approximately 50 systems from the RWP and RWPi series of Rainwater Pump Systems.....read more
The Kew Golf Club, situated alongside the Yarra River, is one of Melbourne’s finest courses. It is irrigated via a pumping station which draws water from the Yarra River, and due to changing river levels, suction conditions for the system vary greatly......read more