New Load Sharing U.S. Patent Announcement

Various examples of our patented load sharing technology being used in complex pumping situations.

Various examples of our patented load sharing technology being used in complex pumping situations.

 
Metropolitan Industries Inc. is proud to announce that the company has been issued a system and method patent by the U. S. Patent Office (No. US 8,180,496 B2) which will allow dissimilar variable speed pumps to be controlled in a way never before possible. We have elected to market our programmable logic control systems utilizing this technology by using the term “load sharing.”

The development of load sharing should be very welcome news to anyone attempting to operate any liquid transfer or pressurization system through the use of dissimilar pumps or other challenging hydraulic scenarios. The load sharing process allows Metropolitan to manufacture specialized variable speed control systems for pumping applications which have multiple dissimilar pumps or pumps which need to operate together under varying hydraulic conditions.

Load sharing will eliminate conditions during which one or more pumps operate under high or extremely high energy load conditions, while other pumps within the system are extremely under loaded electrically. These operating conditions are undesirable because they typically cause the pumps to operate well outside of their zone of peak hydraulic efficiency. Load sharing, in essence, is a way of ensuring that all dissimilar pumps within a system tend to operate at peak hydraulic efficiency, regardless of the hydraulic load of the process they are feeding, the hydraulic conditions under which they are operating, and the varying load profile of each pump.

Load sharing defined:

Load sharing is a dynamically-equalizing process by which two or more dissimilar pumps, with dissimilar hydraulic characteristics or operating under dissimilar hydraulic conditions, are operated in unison to accomplish a common task, while drawing a commonality of electrical energy proportional to their individual load characteristics. The process is dynamic because the electrical power load of each pump on the system is continuously compared to the maximum load of the unit. In addition, the electrical power load of each individual pump is also continuously adjusted in proportion to each of the other units, so that the percent load of each unit is proportionally matched by all other units. As such, each of the pumps on the system will very likely operate at rotating speeds which differ from one unit to the next, while attaining the exact same desired set point task.

Common task clarified:

The grouping of pumps must be programmed to accomplish the same set point task, whether the task is to maintain a common line pressure, maintain a common outlet temperature, maintain a common pumped water elevation or, in some instances, a combination of two of these tasks.

Commonality of proportional energy explored:

The load sharing program will adjust the speed of each pump individually while maintaining the common task set point(s), so that the power load (or kilowatt consumption) of each pump in the group is proportional to the load of all pumps in the group.

Example scenario: One 20 HP pump will operate at 10 BHP, while two 60 HP pumps each operate at 30 BHP. In this scenario, each pump in the system operates at 50 percent of its peak load. This process dynamically and continuously varies proportionally, as the demands of the pumped process changes.

Real world examples:

The load sharing process we’ve patented is designed to be very flexible, allowing the technology to be adapted to a variety of applications. The technology will provide us with the unique ability to tackle some of the most challenging hydraulic scenarios in the markets and industries we serve.

Our load sharing program being used in a commercial building application.

Our load sharing program being used in a commercial building application.

 
Multiple pumps with dissimilar flow capabilities:

One or more smaller jockey pumps (or lead pumps) can operate with one or more larger duty pumps (or lag pumps). Possible examples would be a water pressure booster system for a large commercial building or, potentially, a municipal water pumping station. Pumps of various rated flows can work together, each with a shared proportion of their rated horsepower.

Multiple pumps with dissimilar performance characteristics:

One or more pumps with “steep” curve characteristics can operate with one or more pumps with “flat” curve characteristics. This is the perfect process control in a scenario where one or more multi-stage pumps need to operate in conjunction with one or more single-stage pumps.

Multiple pumps, at different geographic locations, feeding a common process:

A municipal pumping station at the east end of town can operate in unison with another pump station at the west end of town. Load sharing is a great solution, especially if the pump stations are at different elevations. Managing this type of application is also enhanced if the water main friction loss profiles are also very different at each end of town.

Multiple pumps, with different suction pressures, feeding a common process:

An exceptionally difficult process-control scenario can be overcome with relative ease. A municipal pumping application, including two or more gravity tanks at varying elevations, feeding a multiple pump system, with a single set point pressure, is an excellent application for load sharing technology.

Multiple pumps with dissimilar motor sizes:

By the nature of the pumps described, many of the scenarios mentioned above will inherently include pumps with various motor sizes. Load sharing will allow all of these systems to operate at their proportionally equal power load, which in itself will tend to ensure operation within the peak efficiency range of their individual performance curves.

Make no mistake: This process program is extremely unique and will be a very valuable asset to our clients while operating their most challenging pumping applications.

For more information regarding load sharing and any potential projects which may benefit from the process, please contact Metropolitan Industries senior systems engineer Brendan Bates at 800-323-1665 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

 

Metropolitan provides local village with a boost

Metropolitan housed the simplex pump system in a clamshell structure for convenience.

Metropolitan housed the simplex pump system in a clamshell structure for convenience.

 
At Metropolitan Industries, we take great pride in our ability to design retrofit solutions to meet your needs.  Our engineering expertise and dedicated sales and service staffs can design custom solutions best suited to solve your water and wastewater challenges.

As case study illustrating our dedication to being problem solvers can be demonstrated by the work done in a village located in DuPage County, Ill.   At the request of the owner, the location of the project will remain confidential.

“The customer needed to deliver water pressure to a small housed concession stand located at an outdoor sports complex,” said Metropolitan commercial sales manager Mike Ponx.  “They required a simplex system housed in compact fashion, so we contained the system in a small clamshell structure.  With this solution, the final product isn’t an eye-catcher and still delivers the water pressure needed for the concession stand to function properly.”

Ponx said the system needed to provide enough water pressure to deliver flow to sinks, lavatories, water closets and hoses within the concession stand.  In order to accommodate, Metropolitan supplied a simplex system with a designed flow rate of 59 GPM at a discharge pressure of 90 PSI.

Ponx said the application of the clamshell structure was ideal for the customer due to its cost-effective price.

“From a financial standpoint, this made the most sense for the customer because they did not have the space or housing already in place for the system,” said Ponx.  “An alternative solution, such as a prefabricated housed structure, would have been much more costly.”

Ponx said a number of amenities were included within the housed structure to ensure routine maintenance and checkup would be hassle-free.

“We included a heating system and a drop light for times when service is being conducted,” said Ponx.  “The structure itself comes with a large enough power supply to run not only the pump, but an electric heater as well.  It also runs a convenience outlet that provides the customer with power when needed.  Everything was supplied as a prefabricated packaged system.”

Overall, Ponx said the project depicts Metropolitan’s vast and unique capabilities, particularly within its commercial division.

“This project demonstrates how diverse we are and our ability to solve problems, small or large,” said Ponx.  “Our commercial division has the ability to service high-rise buildings or, in this case, small structures that do not require very large systems.  In any case, we can provide customers with a number of options and custom solutions applicable to their needs.”

For more information, please contact Mike Ponx at 815-886-9200 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

Metropolitan introduces new, easy to use system controllers

Metropolitan’s new Metro-Tech II controller.

 
At Metropolitan Industries, customizing solutions to meet the needs and specifications of customers is one of the cornerstones to the way we conduct business.

We believe user-friendly equipment developed to meet precise requirements and suit specific applications leads to the most efficient system operation and results in optimum customer satisfaction.

Adhering to this philosophy, we recently released two new lines of innovative, menu-configurable water booster pump and boiler system controllers, designed to fit specific programs and provide operators with ease of use.

Our “Metro-Tech II” booster pump controller can be customized to meet any requirements, and provides users with the ability to change set and command points, view real-time operating conditions and alarms, and use integrated help screen through the controller’s color touch screen operator interface.

Our “ThermoTech™” cascading boiler controller also features a user-friendly, color touch screen operator interface, and provides users with the ability to set lead boilers, monitor return temperatures and flow meter inputs, track system modulation percentage, set stage delays and more. This controller can be customized to control from one and up to eight boilers.

For a more details regarding each of our new controllers, please visit The Chief Engineer, which recently profiled the Metro-Tech II and ThermoTech™ extensively in its March issue.

Florida municipality upgrades to housed pump system

Metropolitan supplied the municipality with a prefabricated housed system, including all associated pumps, piping and controls.

 
At Metropolitan Industries, our reach extends far beyond the Midwest. Our national sales team can supply customized pumping solutions shipped fully assembled for ease of installation. Over the years, we have provided domestic water booster systems, complete sump and sewage lift station packages and many more of our cataloged products to customers not just nationwide, but around the globe as well.

Our ability to deliver solutions to pumping challenges to all is demonstrated by the work done in the city of Marianna, Fla. Working with an existing pump system over 25 years old and in need of more pumping capacity, the city turned to the team of Blankenship Contracting, Inc., Pump and Process Equipment Company and Metropolitan Industries to provide a custom solution.

“The customer required a custom pump system package that would not only provide more flow to account for increased demand, but could also supply the fire flow if needed,” said Pump and Process Equipment’s Eric McGee. “To meet these specifications, we designed a three-pump system housed in a prefabricated steel building, all of which was supplied by Metropolitan.”

Each of the three pumps is designed to provide a flow of 750 GPM at 134 feet of TDH. Each pump motor is rated at 40 HP and performs at 3500 RPM at 76.6 percent efficiency.

The prefabricated galvanized steel building includes a 72-inch by 84-inch double door entry to the pump room and a “pebblestone” exterior finish for an attractive design solution.

The system will primarily serve a nearby health department and surrounding residents.

McGee said initial design discussions planned to incorporate a two-pump system, but after discussing options with Metropolitan salesperson Mike Tierney, the group came to a resolution to implement a three-pump system housed in a prefabricated structure.

“We originally planned to build a system with two large pumps, but instead, designed a system with three smaller pumps for a variety of reasons, one of them being energy-efficient operation,” said McGee. “With three pumps, we can run just one at low loads. If the demand increases at any time, the other pump(s) will kick into gear.”

McGee said one of the primary challenges faced was meeting a short lead time, which forced the team of Metropolitan, Pump and Process and Blankenship to complete the project in a quick and well-organized fashion.

“From start to finish, we only had around 8 to 10 weeks to complete the project,” said McGee. “It required a team effort from everyone involved and thanks to a well-executed plan, we were able to deliver the system to our customer on time.”

In order to ensure water operators were familiar with the new system, Metropolitan sent service technicians to the job site to conduct training.

“Training provides a good start for customers when becoming acclimated to a new system,” said McGee. “Knowing the major do’s and don’ts of a system can make for a smooth transition.”

McGee said working with a single source provider was critical to Pump and Process and a chief reason why Metropolitan was involved with the project.

“We wanted to partner with an organization that had all capabilities under one roof,” said McGee. “Metropolitan was able to provide manufacturing, controls, pumps and service. We were comfortable having to contact one sole organization if any issues arose.”

Since installation, McGee said the system has run “flawlessly” and described his overall experience of working with Metropolitan as positive.

“When working with Metropolitan, the word professionalism comes to mind,” said McGee. “We’ve worked with many businesses in the water and wastewater industries and appreciate the way Metropolitan communicates with its customers. The ‘no excuses’ approach they take to developing a system ensures quality is of supreme concern.”

For more information, please contact Metropolitan’s Mike Tierney at 800-323-1665 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

Metropolitan tackles confined space dangers

Entering a confined space for system repair is a dangerous procedure, particularly due to accumulated gases that may be hazardous. At Metropolitan, we can provide solutions to decrease the frequency of entering a confined space.

 
Now more than ever, municipalities are addressing the dangers of below ground pump stations to protect both entrants into confined spaces and the investment of systems themselves. The United States Department of Labor requires a permit for those seeking to enter confined spaces for system repair, accompanied by rigorous guidelines those involved with the entry must follow.

Moreover, flooding of below ground pump systems can lead to catastrophic damage of the systems themselves, often costing municipalities a great deal for repair or even replacement, and can lead to an emergency service call.

Metropolitan Industries recently renovated three below ground pump stations, giving each customer the ability to interface with the controls without entering the confined space. Another advantage of “above grade controls” is the avoidance of control system damage caused by a vault flood. Potential future projects such as submersible pump retro-fit into the existing wet well would be the next appropriate step to completely eliminate confined space entry.

City of Calumet City, Ill.

The City of Calumet City, Ill. recently came to Metropolitan for an emergency rehabilitation project following the flooding of a below ground water pump station.

“Metropolitan suspects the reservoir fill valve stuck open causing an overflow condition, thus filling the below ground pump station with water,” said Metropolitan salesperson Keith Girup. “The existing booster station was constructed many years ago when below ground systems were common. Metropolitan was able to repair and replace equipment quickly, and in the process improve the operation and energy-efficiency of the station by implementing variable frequency drives for constant pressure control.”

Another new piece of equipment included in the upgrade was a low-flow shutdown bladder storage tank.

“The new bladder tank supports the water system leak loads during low flow periods of time,” Girup said.

The system was also integrated into a city-wide SCADA system for enhanced monitoring and alarm notification. A flood switch was added to the pump room to ensure notification is provided in the event of a flood since the pumps remain in the below ground vault and are subjected to the hazards associated with such a location.

The primary advantages of the system upgrades are the reduced frequency of entering a confined space and overall protection of the equipment.

South Palos Sanitary District

Metropolitan recently completed a similar project for the South Palos Sanitary District.

“In this project, the customer decided to keep their drywell pumps below ground, but implemented above grade controls into a new prefabricated concrete building with an exposed aggregate finish,” said Girup. “The prefabricated building contains the controls, generator and a temperature control device, essentially eliminating the need to enter below ground in order to interface with the controls.”

Girup said that because the customer has decided to keep the drywell pumps below ground, it will still be necessary to go below ground to maintain the pumps. However, the frequency of confined space entry has decreased dramatically with the implementation of above ground controls.

“Safety and common sense are the reasons for upgrading to above grade systems,” said Girup. “Going into a confined space requires special procedures with two individuals, safety harnesses and gas monitoring equipment at a minimum to ensure safety. If precautions are not followed, consequences could be fatal.”

Village of Burr Ridge, Ill.

The Village of Burr Ridge, Ill. also called upon Metropolitan for a below ground lift station upgrade.

Metropolitan implemented an above ground traffic box for this particular project, placing all controls and electrical distribution equipment above ground.

“The customer has intentions to replace the existing pumps with submersible pumps, however, this project was phase one, which included the above grade controls to significantly reduce the amount of times they would need to go below ground,” said Girup. “In the previous configuration, the customer was going down into the pit quite often to monitor controls, but with our upgrade, they no longer have to do so.”

Conclusion

With each upgrade, the customer not only gained capital investment protection by implementing above grade control systems to protect controls from potential below ground flooding, they also improved safety conditions by reducing the frequency of confined space entry.

Entering a confined space is a major process with strict guidelines which, if not followed, can produce fatal consequences. Metropolitan can provide both investment protection and overall safety with above ground system retro-fit solutions.

For more information, please contact Keith Girup at 800-323-1665, ext. 264 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

MetroMail™ monitoring system included in recent lift station retrofit

MetroMail™ is an economical option for customers seeking basic monitoring equipment.

Metropolitan Industries recently completed a stand-alone version of MetroMail™, the company’s very own alarm notification system. The company will receive alarm notification via text message and/ or email through the internet.

When implemented to monitor any pump or electrical system, MetroMail™ has the capability to send email alerts to notify users of equipment status or problems, and can assist customers in avoiding potential disaster when troubles arise.

“Users can configure MetroMail™ to send an email at an interval completely configurable by users out through the device’s Ethernet jack and through the Internet,” said Metropolitan Industries software engineer Joe Burza. “In other words, if you have your laptop on you or you’re carrying a device with email capability, you can receive a message that a problem with your pump has occurred instead of waiting for the water to back up and start flooding.”

MetroMail™ features eight optically isolated dry inputs accepting 10 to 30 volts of AC or DC power. The unit’s status light tells users whether the unit has power, is properly configured and is sending emails, whereas network lights indicate LAN activity and connectivity. Its onboard web server allows for the configuration of messages, addresses and other settings via any web browser.

A MetroMail™ unit was recently installed at a jail located in northwest Indiana. Metropolitan was contacted by Keough Mechanical for the project, who wished to upgrade the existing lift station due to clogged pumps reported by detention center officials.

The lift station in need of attention was responsible for all of the sanitary waste from the facility. Detained members knew of its function and would routinely disrupt the operation of the pump system by flushing items that would typically be disposed of in a garbage can.

After Metropolitan salesperson Keith Girup made a field visit with the owner and contractor to discuss the problem with the operators and evaluate the obstacles associated with the retrofit upgrade, it was determined that an impeller change would be the most suitable solution to significantly reduce and potentially eliminate the clogging issues.

While Metropolitan was helping solve the mechanical issues the facility faced, new controls with email notification were also proposed.

In order to provide this notification, Metropolitan included MetroMail™, which contacts personnel by email in the event of a lift station alarm condition. An operator interface with Internet connectivity via a cellular modem was also included.

These control features allow for quick response during an alarm condition with 24-hour supervisory ability.

MetroMail™ offers customers a cost-effective option for basic monitoring equipment when more expensive options are not practical. Its convenient size also gives customers the flexibility to monitor equipment when space is a concern.

For more information regarding MetroMail™, please contact Keith Girup at 800-323-1665, ext. 264 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

Local municipality completes major lift station renovation

With the help of Metropolitan Industries, the Village of Romeoville, Ill. implemented major upgrades to its O’Hara Woods lift station.

 
Metropolitan Industries has extensive experience in the implementation and upgrade of lift stations. For over 50 years, we have provided components and even complete prefabricated lift stations as single-source systems that include all equipment required for operation.

Services such as design assistance and a 24/7 service department help ensure systems are engineered to meet the owner’s specifications in a variety of sizes. For the complete system, a station can be combined with a “MetroFab” custom-designed, prefabricated housed system. Housed systems are factory pre-piped and wired, and are shipped fully assembled for easy installation. Like a prefabricated lift station, these systems can also be customized to meet any specifications you require.

A recent example of a customer’s desire for a significant upgrade to their existing facilities is the work completed at the Romeoville, Ill. O’Hara Woods lift station.

Working with an existing duplex sanitary lift station, the village decided to make many custom upgrades to the site.

“The existing 20-year-old duplex system was still functioning fine, but an upgrade was needed due to village growth and the planning for future development,” said Metropolitan salesperson Keith Girup. “To keep up with the demand, the station was upgraded to a triplex system by utilizing the existing duplex wet well and a parallel existing manhole for a simplex wet well to house the three new pumps. We also supplied three precast concrete enclosures which, when installed on the concrete pad, were made to look like one common building. The three separate rooms make up the building, and house the new lift station controls, standby generator and chemical dosing system all under a common 28-foot by 28-foot roof.”

The previous configuration did not feature enough pumping capacity to keep up with the station’s increased demand.

 
In total, the system now has three eight-inch submersible, non-clog, explosion-proof sewage pumps each with a capacity of 2,084 GPM at 99 feet of TDH. Each pump motor is rated at 125 HP, 1750 RPM, 60 Hz, 480 volt, three-phase.

Control system upgrades were made to replace obsolete equipment not capable of operating the new horsepower and new quantity of pumps. In addition, the prefabricated concrete buildings gave the customer a more secure and attractive solution. Metropolitan supplied the three prefabricated buildings and provided a simulated “Ashlar Stone” finish as an attractive exterior design. Inside walls are painted concrete and the owner chose an aesthetically pleasing metal roof to complete the buildings.

In addition to housing the new controls, another primary benefit of the lift station upgrade was the addition of new variable frequency drives.

“All pumps are variable speed meaning they will speed up or slow down to match the influent rate,” said Girup. “This type of application only uses electrical consumption as needed, thus saving energy.”

Another upgrade included in-place standby power.

“When power loss would occur in the previous configuration, the customer needed to mobilize personnel and a portable generator unit to support the remote lift station,” said Girup. “In the new configuration, the permanent standby 400 kW, diesel-fueled generator will support all three pumps during a power failure automatically.”

An additional advantage of including a permanent generator is phase protection. If any phase of power is dropped at any time, the generator’s automatic transfer switch will recognize the power failure and supply clean power from the generator to the pumps until the full power supply is regained. Because pump motors may burn up during dropped phases, or brown outs, the permanent generator provides further investment protection to the lift station.

In addition to the standby generator, a chemical dosing system was supplied to replace the existing system. The new chemical system provides accurate feeding of treatment chemicals via a dosing pump that paces the total sewage discharge flow rate and reduces the frequency of chemical replenishment by increasing the volume of the storage tank, thus reducing fees associated with chemical delivery. The implementation of a chemical tank was deemed necessary per customer specifications. The chemical is used for odor control and to start the biological process of the sewage, assisting in the treatment process.

Surveillance cameras and anti-graffiti coating were also part of the new control and SCADA system upgrades.

New equipment was needed to monitor flow and tie in the third pump. A polyurea-coated, prefabricated meter and valve vault with measurements of 16 feet in length and 8 feet in diameter was also included to connect the new simplex pump system with the existing duplex system and also includes flood-proof hatches. Flood-proof hatches were provided due to the fact the lift station is located directly next to a large pond. The hatch elevations now all exceed the 100-year flood event elevation, however, if the customer does encounter significant rainfall, the hatches are water tight and will not allow water into the wet well, valve vault or meter vault.

A number of accommodations were made for the customer while upgrades were taking place, the most important being the need to keep the station functioning during construction.

Among the many upgrades provided to the O’Hara Woods lift station was the addition of new controls.

 
“A great deal of planning was done ahead of time to make the field installation, start-up and integration into the SCADA system seamless,” said Girup. “All of the buildings were pre-wired and all controls were programmed before arrival on-site, making the transition as efficient as possible. The prefabricated components of the project allowed the contractor to save on bypass pumping due to the expedited nature of prefabricated system installation.”

An existing control enclosure also needed to be moved to a strategic location for installation to occur simultaneously with the existing lift station still in service. The existing control box was located close to where the prefabricated buildings would be installed. The contractor and supplier made sure the entire transplant of controls remained reliable and the customer did not miss a beat in regards to system operation, data acquisition and potential alarm notification.

“The prefabricated buildings were chosen for a variety of reasons, including cost and security,” said Girup. “Alternatives such as a large steel traffic box enclosure would have been nearly as costly, but would not have provided the same level of security that the buildings provide.”

The project reflects Metropolitan’s commitment and ability to meet the customer’s needs with ease of installation and peace of mind while making a smooth transition to an upgraded system.

A large upgrade project such as the Romeoville O’Hara Woods job is a large undertaking for all involved not only financially, but in regards to keeping the existing system in operation while upgrades are taking place. Metropolitan’s expertise, customer service and fabrication abilities helped to ensure the best possible transition from the old existing system to a first class facility.

The new improvements include a total of three sewage pumps, and provide housing along with surveillance cameras and anti-graffiti coating for further protection.

 
Project engineer, Jon Zabrocki, P.E., of Robinson Engineering, LTD praised Metropolitan’s ability to supply and support all of the equipment needed for this installation.

“When you’re dealing with a project as complex as this, it’s comforting to know you’re working with a single-source provider who is willing to take on the responsibility of supplying and supporting anything you might need throughout the job,” said Zabrocki. “The end result is that the new system has exceeded our expectations and it shows what can be done when owner, contractor, supplier and engineer are all on the same page.”

Village of Romeoville, Ill. wastewater superintendent Bob Stoppenbach credited the village’s confidence in all parties involved for establishing a strong level of comfort throughout the entire rehabilitation process.

“We’ve worked with Metropolitan on many projects and knew they were very capable of delivering the quality of upgrades that we required,” said Stoppenbach. “We were very pleased at the project’s conclusion and look forward to working with them again in the future.”

For more information, please contact Keith Girup at 800-323-1665 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

City of Rock Falls, Ill. Upgrades Lift Station Control Systems

Metropolitan Industries recently assisted in the upgrade of several existing lift station control systems for the City of Rock Falls, Ill. Metropolitan municipal salesperson Dan Howorth was on-hand to see the last of the six lift stations improved begin operation. Included within the systems are Multitrode level probes with new PLCs, including Trihedral’s VT SCADA software. This technology gives the city the ability to monitor each system on a station-by-station basis at a cost-efficient price.

Metropolitan was first contacted by the consulting engineering firm Willett Hofmann & Associates, Inc. of Dixon, Ill. for design assistance. For a relatively small city such as Rock Falls, the integration of this type of control system in its lift stations made ideal sense. For municipalities that generally do not utilize a full SCADA system, the panels Metropolitan provides can operate independently or as part of a complete SCADA system.

“Many small towns today may not have the economic resources for city-wide SCADA systems, but can afford this type of control system upgrade and gain the ability to access such locations through the internet via computer, smart phone or any device with e-mail capabilities,” said Howorth. “If you’ve got a small town has two lift stations or well sites and/or a very small plant, these are ideal because our control panels can be implemented at a modest cost when compared to complete SCADA systems.”

Another benefit of these systems is flexibility. Though the city of Rock Falls will begin operation of each station independent of any SCADA communication, these systems are SCADA compatible if customers wish to employ them into a more comprehensive SCADA system in the future. The city of Rock Falls has chosen to activate each unit using VT SCADA capabilities, but had previously developed a large wastewater plant and can now connect each lifting station to a city-wide SCADA system if they eventually choose to do so.

“Metropolitan excels at this type of ‘a la carte’ solution for SCADA integration,” said Howorth. “Our competition may only promote a complete SCADA system and focus on conducting a fully integrated (and often very expensive) system, as opposed to building a system ‘one block at a time’ or as budget and/or time allows. We offer our customers flexibility in these types of situations.”

For more information, please contact Dan Howorth at 815-886-9200, ext. 281 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

Equipment Upgrades Bring Pump Station Efficient Operation

In addition to the equipment we supplied to the Joe Orr Road Lift Stations of Chicago Heights, Ill., Metropolitan was also chosen to supply equipment to the 71st Street Stormwater Pump Station in Bridgeview, Ill.  The control and power distribution equipment was housed in a prefabricated concrete building with outside dimensions of 10’6” in length and 10’4” in width.

The addition of variable frequency drives will provide the pump station with efficient operation, which will lead to energy savings for the customer.

 
Three Hydromatic model S12L4000 non-clog pumps with 100’ cords and silicon carbide seals were supplied.  Each pump has a capacity of 3142 GPM at 29.2’ TDH for a total pumping capacity of 9,426 GPM when operating in parallel.  Each motor is rated at 40 HP, 1150 RPM, 460 volts, 60 Hz and three phase.  A 125 kW natural gas, sound attenuated Caterpillar generator was also included in the equipment package.

Metropolitan’s Keith Girup said Metropolitan was contacted to take part in the project at its inception, and that the eventual place where the building would be placed and function had much to do with its overall design.

“This pump station is on the southwest side of Toyota Park on 71st Street in Bridgeview where an IDOT viaduct is being constructed so that traffic can flow under the railroad tracks,” said Girup.  “The pumps will displace stormwater during rain events to prevent the viaduct from flooding.”

Girup said additions of variable frequency drives and enhanced controls with SCADA components will provide the municipality with both energy efficient operation and alarm notification if procedure encounters a malfunction.

Control upgrades were made at Metropolitan and the building was shipped fully assembled and ready for installation.

 
“This station has been designed with variable frequency drives which will vary the speed of the pumps to match the rainfall event,” said Girup.  “By varying the speed of the pumps, the motors will only consume the amps needed to match the influent rate, thus saving on electrical costs.”

For more information, please contact Keith Girup at 815-886-9200, ext. 264 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

Metropolitan Goes Back To School

In its distinctive role among the many institutions of learning in America, Iowa Wesleyan College adheres to the ideals of its founding vision of social justice and human welfare on the local and international level by seeking to decrease its carbon footprint. In an attempt to bring a cleaner, greener and a more cost efficient heating system to their school, Iowa Wesleyan, in conjunction with Energy Systems Group, decided to replace their existing, centralized hydronic heating system with several more efficient, complete packaged boiler and primary piping pump systems from Metropolitan Industries.

ESG designed a system so that each building’s heating system would have equipment pre-assembled and manufactured for ease of installation. ESG decided Metropolitan Industries, the leading manufacturer of complete boiler and primary piping pump systems, was the right supplier for equipment development and construction. The campus upgrades also included additional geothermal heating/cooling facilities.

“After a few discussions about the design, we decided to provide high-efficiency, pre-packaged hybrid boiler systems assembled on prefabricated skids with the associated primary piping and pumps,” said Metropolitan’s HVAC Sales Manager Matt Brickey. “This type of design would allow for ease of installation by the contractor and reduce installation time dramatically. We realized moving the prefabricated system through the tight hallways and doorways posed a challenge, so the system was designed so that it could be manufactured in a way that split the skid in three different spots allowing for easier moving and maneuvering around tight spaces.”

The custom designed and engineered boiler systems were installed in five campus buildings: The McKibbin Dormitory, Student Union, Science Hall, Campus Library and the newly-renovated Chapel. In the McKibbin Dormitory and Student Union, hybrid boiler systems with heat exchangers were also packaged on the systems to satisfy the domestic hot water load.

High efficiency air separators manufactured by Spirotherm® were utilized to remove unwanted air that may have found its way into the system during the installation process. Spirovent® technology is designed to address all forms of air (entrapped, entrained and dissolved) that can be found in closed loop systems and remove nearly all of it. The coalescing medium creates a low velocity area inside the Spirovent® that allows air bubbles to rise and dirt to sink. There are no strainers, filters or replacement parts that can potentially become clogged. The flow always remains constant, without a high-pressure drop.

The end result is increased distribution efficiency, component life and heat transfer capabilities, along with decreased oxygen-based corrosion and pump cavitation, and the elimination of air related noises within the entire piping system.

Pictured are the new hybrid boiler system package and the primary piping pump system recently installed at Iowa Wesleyan's Science Hall.


How can you benefit using two different boilers?

In regards to Iowa Wesleyan’s energy consumption concerns, the primary reason for utilizing a modulated conventional boiler AND a condensing boiler is simple–together they are more efficient, have a lower initial cost and last longer.

For Iowa Wesleyan, the implementation of the hybrid boiler system was the ideal solution for their new heating system. They were able to save some upfront costs by purchasing a “standard” efficiency boiler, but were still able to benefit with the energy savings through the use of the high efficiency condensing boiler when conditions would allow.

Combustion air temperature also affects the net efficiency of the combustion process. Cold combustion air will absorb more energy released from burning the fuel than warmer combustion air; meaning colder combustion air reduces the efficiency of the appliance.

Lower return water temperatures and lower flue gas temperatures provide the best condensing operation. The condensing boilers recover the latent heat that is usually lost by harvesting the energy that is created when the water vapor in the flue gas is turned into a liquid.

When a customer’s boiler system is more efficient, it will not only save the customer money each year, it will also decrease their carbon footprint. The efficiency of the boiler system in part depends on the temperature of the return water. When the return water temperature is 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 degrees Celsius) and above, the control system will run the conventional boiler. At 129 degrees Fahrenheit (53.9 degrees Celsius) and below, the control system will run the condensing boiler. The savings are maximized in temperate climates where winters are cold and summers are warm.

When the system uses the condensing boiler, the amount of usable, sensible heat that is generated is significantly larger than that of a conventional boiler system–creating true system efficiency.

Why not just use condensing boilers?

It may seem as if the perfect boiler system would simply use condensing technology. But if return water temperatures are too high, the condensing boiler will be only as efficient as a conventional type boiler. In a condensing boiler, when the temperature of the return water is too high and the air temperature is too cold, it will not allow a condensing boiler to operate in condensing mode. Initial capital costs can be reduced with a hybrid system by combining a lower cost conventional boiler with a premium efficiency condensing boiler.

Due to Iowa Wesleyan’s upgrades, carbon emissions are expected to reduce, which will translate into savings in total energy costs.

Every customer’s needs are unique and Metropolitan can tailor the solutions to meet your needs.

“What’s nice about these systems is that they’re completely customized to the client’s needs,” said Brickey. “Metropolitan Industries can configure the piping, boilers and system components in any manner to ease the installation process for a new or retrofit application.”

In the case of Iowa Wesleyan College, the savings are significant.

For more information regarding HVAC products, please contact Matt Brickey at 815-886-9200, ext. 266 or sales@metropolitanind.com.

  • 1
  • 2