Sensors and automation passively participate in our everyday lives to improve comfort, add safety and reliability, and increase the efficiency of needed products and services.

Active Front End (AFE) drives use two power sections. An active rectifier is used to minimize the amount of harmonic distortion reflected to the power grid by drawing nearly sinusoidal current from the power grid. Standard 6-pulse rectifiers used in most drives create harmonics (e.g.5th, 7th, etc.) that can generate anywhere from 30 to 100 percent current distortion. The active rectifier used in the AFE drive creates cancelling harmonics that effectively eliminate those that would be created in a standard 6-pulse drive.

Soft starters and VFDs are useful for extending equipment life in HVAC applications.

Understanding technology capabilities and application requirements is important when selecting a wireless technology for an application. The reasons to choose wireless include reduced installation costs, installation and deployment flexibility and the ability to address new applications. Before selecting wireless, first ensure the bandwidth available with wireless meets the application requirements.

The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD), a municipally owned utility, provides roughly four million residents in southeastern Michigan with an average of 710 million gallons of water per day.

As pump users, we often have to deal with fuzzy concepts, such as: What is low flow? When are vibration levels too high? When is suction specific speed value too high? When is a pump's energy level high?

The second part of this three-part series explores the types of protection applied to specific equipment installed at water and wastewater facilities and some typical criteria used to develop protective settings.

Vertically mounted pumps can resonate as a total structure in a "rocking" mode, as shown in Figures 1 and 2 below. This is one of the toughest unsolved vibration problems at several plants.

Paddle wheel flow sensors not only continue to remain strong in industrial applications, their use is growing. Because these devices offer the lowest cost per sensing point of any flow measurement technology, users can save significantly on purchase, installation and maintenance costs.

The next generation solution for variable speed pumping applications are variable frequency drives (VFDs) with integrated advanced pumping software that solves various control applications without the need for a PLC or separate controller.

Even when a redundant pumping system is in place, it can be advisable to monitor the condition of the operating units in critical applications where maintaining production depends on motor-pump reliability.

Interpretation of equipment clues can help diagnose problems before failure occurs

Under an Energy Conservation Performance Program, Miami-Dade County commissioned a study to evaluate potential capital improvement projects fully funded from the projected savings in energy consumption and/or operating and maintenance costs. Through this program, the cost of new equipment is financed through energy and/or other realized operational cost savings. The capital funding otherwise required to replace existing mechanical systems is avoided, and those funds can then become available for other County needs.

The installation of an AC drive with an advanced software tool has dramatically cut call-outs for blockages at an Irish county council pumping station.

In the power industry, clean water is crucial for a variety of tasks, including extending the service life of turbine seals and protecting spray nozzles and heat transfer equipment. Raw water drawn from lakes, rivers and reservoirs must first be strained to create acceptable clean water for use. The power industry and other industries must continuously strain tens of thousands of gallons of water per minute to remove dirt and debris that can wreak havoc on critical process systems and equipment.

If pump cavitation is not detected and quickly eliminated, significant damage can occur to the impeller and other internal components. Since cavitation (the formation and collapse of vapor bubbles in the pumped fluid as it passes through the pump impeller) is often temporary or even induced by the process, timely knowledge of the condition is extremely important so operators can act to alleviate the problem and prevent damage.

Named after frontiersman Kit Carson, Carson City, Nev., is known for its fresh air, rugged natural surroundings and its proximity to the casinos of Reno and skiing in Lake Tahoe. Carson City, the capital of Nevada, has been a self-governing municipality since 1972. The Carson City Public Works Dept. manages all the water for Carson City and County. Its mission is to be completely self-sufficient-acquiring, using and reusing 100 percent of its own water.

A sewage lift pump that pumps millions of gallons per day simply can't go down. To prevent this from happening, this pair of electricians went about testing some new electrical systems for those pumps with a new insulation multimeter.

When measuring vibration, one of the most important factors in obtaining accurate information involves selecting the proper vibration transducer. Selecting the wrong vibration transducer can yield results that are misleading or, worse, mask a problem.

One of the major contributors to unbalance in rotating machinery is eccentricity. When we disassemble parts, we must also reassemble them. Even if the reassembly requires heating to shrink-fit the elements back together, we probably balanced them in a balancing machine where tolerances due to fit-up on mandrels or roundness of journals may possibly far exceed the heavy spot tolerances that the target standard of balance allows.