Over the past 50 years, advances in technology have provided the primary thrust behind the success and evolution of variable-speed drive systems. Here are some considerations for the proper selection and set up of different types of systems, and what lies ahead in the future.

Few would dispute that variable frequency drives (VFDs) save energy, but the exact amount depends on the system. Hydraulically speaking, the main difference between a variable frequency (speed) drive and a discharge valve is that a VFD only changes a pump curve, while a valve only changes a system curve. A pump operates at the intersection between its H-Q curve and a system curve, and a change in either moves the operating point to a new intersection.

For controller-to-controller coordination, wireless Bluetooth is an excellent alternative to Class 3 radios.

Find out why level controls can fail in municipal wastewater treatment plants and similar systems and what technologies are available to combat failure.

Today's electricians are often found working in applications outside the realm of what is traditionally considered "electrical." Through new programs sponsored by the IBEW-JATC training schools and others, the skill sets of the electrical union workforce have broadened to include automation and controls.

Explore the current condition of SCADA reports and some new technology that will improve the quality of those reports.

Identifying the source of vibration by following the amplitude: the case of a company that thought the problem was a pump impeller, but, in fact, the problem was over 15-ft away and not a pump at all.

Dynamic pressure sensors and accelerometers are frequently used for precision measurements in oil, gas and petrochemical industries, as well as for natural gas supply monitoring applications. The development of piezoelectric sensor technology with integral charge amplifier, as well as the development of high temperature charge output designs, has been especially important for dynamic sensing applications. To truly understand the benefits of this technology, one must first review the evolution of this type of sensing.

The town of Walden rests on a high glacial plain in Colorado, just 20 miles from the Wyoming border in Jackson County. Situated in the center of a large open valley called North Park, the 734 residents (based on the 2000 census) of the town and the surrounding area refer to themselves as "North Parkers."

Outdated water systems are pumping beyond their original specifications, resulting in inefficient operation, higher maintenance and operation costs and the potential for a system shutdown. This article takes a look at updating the controls and pumps for a water system.

The DelMonte vegetable processing facility in Crystal City, Texas, is a cannery for spinach, carrots and beets. Located 40 miles from the Mexican border, the plant has been in operation since World War II. The facility's capacity for canned spinach currently approaches 800,000 cans per day, so it needs dependable equipment.

A crucial triumvirate for improving the bottom line. pump system optimization, pump efficiency

Last year in “Trending Revelations in Vibration Analysis,” (Pumps & Systems, June 2009), I discussed the importance of statistic trending in vibrations analysis. Usually, as most would expect, vibrations gradually increase with time. This increase reflects the normal internal wear, accumulative misalignment and deformations that can occur within a pump. All these wear conditions will lead to eventual failure.

Released in January 2010, the SDT270 Ultrasonic Detector, in conjunction with its powerful database software, gives the earliest indication of bearing re-lubrication requirements, bearing failure, and pump cavitation.

Lift stations can be difficult and costly to monitor, especially when the stations are located in remote areas.

Since municipal codes frequently deal with the most crucial areas of public life-covering the safety of life and property-it is understandable that preference is given to tools and methods that are "tried and true" over ones that are untested. The challenge becomes how to take advantage of new advances in technology while recognizing the importance of maintaining an uncompromising level of safety and security. The answer can lie in close cooperation between officials who champion the integrity of the municipal code system and individuals experienced in the implementation of innovative technologies.

When it comes to pressure and flow, variable speed pumping applications can be divided into three basic categories. Constant pressure-variable flow (Cp-Vf) attempts to keep pressure relatively constant over a range of flows. Constant flow-variable pressure (Cf-Vp) tries to achieve the opposite by using varying pressure to keep flow constant. Variable pressure-variable flow (Vp-Vf) applications can accommodate a change in both.

Any time a measuring instrument is used in a plant, it is expected to provide reliable results.

Wireless technology has significantly impacted business worldwide. It enables a greater degree of connectivity among devices for enhanced monitoring and utilization of existing assets. It has also led to the development of new applications that improve productivity, uptime and overall business performance.

The small town of Groin, Mo., has an excellent source of water. The water board says its wells and distribution system are coasting along at about half the maximum capacity. Since demand is growing at less than 2 percent per year, it would be reasonable to assume the current system is more than adequate for many years.

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