Romtec Utilities designs, manufactures, and supplies new lift stations for a wide variety of applications. It is common that some new lift stations serve as replacements for existing systems that are aging or failing. The City of El Centro in California needed to replace a sewer lift station that had been in operation since 1974. In addition to the age of the lift station, there were other circumstances that led the City to require a new, replacement lift station. This project included a robust design that will serve the City of El Centro for many years to come, and the requirements for this lift station certainly called for a tough system.
The original lift station was designed to handle sewage from the county jail in El Centro. The difficulties of pumping sanitary sewer from a prison or jail has been written about many times on this blog, and it stems from the fact that prisoners generally try to disrupt daily functions of the facility. This includes flushing or draining all types of atypical items that are difficult for a pump station to handle. Over the years, the original lift station accepted sewer lines from several residential developments, increasing the flow requirements of the lift station. The new lift station was designed and sized to handle these full flow requirements and future flow requirements to act as a regional sewer lift station.
In order for this lift station to function well in the future, the City of El Centro needed to consider its geographical location. Located just a few miles from the border of Mexico, El Centro is no stranger to arid and hot weather. For sewer lift stations, hot weather accelerates the creation hydrogen sulfide gasses or H2S. As H2S builds up in a well, it deteriorates many different types of materials, especially concrete. Pairing the difficult conditions of the water itself with the high likelihood for prolonged exposure to H2S gas, the lift station design requirements needed to resolve these two challenges.
A newer product called polymer concrete is a type of precast material that is as sturdy and versatile as traditional precast concrete, but it can be created with polymer materials that resist corrosion from compounds like H2S. This project is the first complete project that Romtec Utilities has designed and supplied while specifying polymer concrete for the wet well structure, working with the Nevada-based company Armorock. This material has proven to be comparable in terms of lead times, construction times, and functionality when compared to traditional precast concrete, and it will allow El Centro to never worry about H2S corrosion on its well structure.
The difficult water conditions also needed to be handled by the lift station design. For this system, the City wanted to use Vaughan Chopper Pumps. These pumps are a type of macerating pump that has the ability to cut down solids into smaller sizes that can be pumped through the system. These pumps are regarded as some of the most heavy-duty and reliable pumps on the market where suspended solids are anticipated. They are also very commonly used in prison and jail lift station projects.
By incorporating very robust pumps with a very robust well structure, this new, replacement lift station will serve as a reliable regional sewer infrastructure solution for years to come. Romtec Utilities can design lift stations for any application and can incorporate any required materials to meet all types of design requirements. If you are interested in precast polymer concrete or in robust macerating pumps for your lift station project, contact Romtec Utilities to learn more about our products. Remember that with Romtec Utilities you get the complete design, manufacture, and supply of all structural, mechanical, electrical, and communication systems for your pumping system.