Vendor Spotlight: Ebara Fluid Handling

Ebara Pumps Logo

Romtec Utilities frequently specifies Ebara pumps in pump station designs for wastewater, stormwater, and industrial applications. Ebara is fast becoming one of America’s most reliable and cost-effective pumping options for all types of pumping systems, and Romtec Utilities gets a lot of projects approved that feature Ebara pumps. Although Romtec Utilities has no exclusive pump affiliations, the high-standards, reliability, superior lead-times, and economical costs offered through Ebara make its pumps a very valuable option for new pumping system designs.

The Ebara Corporation was founded in 1912. It has since spread to 17 countries and operates Ebara Fluid Handling in South Carolina as its American manufacturing branch for its pumps. Ebara also maintains a service network across North America to provide quick field services and support. By providing local and regional support, Ebara is a very attractive pump option for Romtec Utilities because of the continued benefits provided to pump station operators throughout their system’s life-cycle.

Romtec Utilities recently completed a project featuring Ebara pumps on a large stormwater pumping system. This pumping system was designed, manufactured, and supplied for the Sacramento Municipal Utility District or “SMUD.” The unique aspects of this project were the customer, location, and pumping requirements. Ebara was able to meet these unique conditions to help solve SMUD’s stormwater concerns.

Pump Installation

SMUD decided to build a new headquarters for its operations on a 51-acre plot that had previously held a gravel quarry. The site location had been scraped down over the years and had created a giant depression. In order to handle stormwater at the site, SMUD chose to purchase a large stormwater pumping system from Romtec Utilities to empty a new on-site detention pond. The new pumping system needed to handle typical rainfall all the way up to extreme rainfall –over 12 million gallons-per-day. The high range of pumping requirements was made to ensure that the SMUD facilities would not flood even in extreme rain events.

The pumping system was engineered as a triplex system, meaning it functions with three pumps. The pumps selected for this design were large, 60-horsepower Ebara submersible pumps. By cycling between one or two pumps running, the pumping system can meet a wide range of storm conditions efficiently. All three pumps alternate between starts so that the load is shared, cutting back significantly on pump maintenance. The third pump can also be started in emergency circumstances, such as if a pump becomes blocked or fails.

The Pump Model Used at SMUD

These Ebara pumps, however, are designed for flood control applications and can pump a significant amount of solids without stopping. The pump models selected use a semi-open style impeller that can pass solids uninterrupted. Additionally, the pump impellers are designed to divert pressure and solids away from key components in the volute. These impeller functions help prevent any pump failures or clogging issues.

Another design aspect of the pumps was operating with variable frequency drives, or VFDs. These devices work in the electrical pump controls to adjust the power to the pump motors to modify the pumping rate of the system. The VFDs serve two different functions. First, they gradually ramp up power to the pump motors during each start-up. This function regulates the initial power draw of the system and also reduces wear from the start-up torque. Second, VFDs help mandate the maximum downstream flow rate with varying head conditions. The downstream infrastructure can only handle a maximum of 8,500 gallons-per-minute. The VFDs make sure the pumps to not exceed that pumping rate even when head conditions fluctuate.

In addition to the stormwater pumping system, Romtec Utilities also supplied SMUD with a wastewater lift station for its new facility. This pumping system was much smaller and required 15 horsepower Ebara pumps in a duplex configuration. The pumps for this system were a different model of Ebara pump better suited to wastewater pumping. The biggest advantage these pumps offer is that they are FM rated for use in classified space. These are often referred to as explosion proof or intrinsically safe pumps. The pumps for the wastewater system also used semi-open impellers to pass some solids found in the wastewater.

SMUD Stormwater Detention Pond

is project is a terrific example of how Ebara was able to supply pumps for a big project and a high-profile customer of Romtec Utilities. SMUD was satisfied with the designs for the pumping systems because of the benefits offered by Ebara in terms of pump types, maintenance benefits, availability, and price. Successful projects like this one for SMUD are another reason why Romtec Utilities values strong and reliable vendors like Ebara. With every project, we want to meet each client’s goals and requirements, and great vendors are one way the Romtec Utilities is able to supply our customers with the industries best site-specific pumping systems.

Check out the SMUD Stormwater and SMUD Wastewater project pages to see more about these projects.

You can learn more about Ebara pumps by visiting its website.