Articles & Case Studies

ECS to upgrade mine water pump and protect environment

Posted: Wednesday 23rd May 2018

The pumps, motor control centres and electrical infrastructure at the A Winning mine water treatment scheme (MWTS) in Blackwell near Chesterfield in Derbyshire, are to be renewed and upgraded as part of a contract awarded to ECS Engineering Services by the Coal Authority.

A Winning MWTS was originally built to prevent pollution of underground water supplies and uncontrolled discharges to surface watercourses. It is an important scheme because it is part of a strategy to protect the Nottinghamshire Permo-Triassic aquifer, the most critical aquifer for public water supply in the Midlands. Further, it is in a strategic location due to its underground interconnections between abandoned coal mines and surface watercourses.

The MWTS is used to lower water levels across the coalfield and works in conjunction with other MWTSs. This important upgrade and modernisation contract links the requirement to maintain shaft water levels with upgrading ageing equipment to futureproof the Coal Authority's commitment to the local area.

The Coal Authority is a government body set up to manage the effects of past coal mining operations, including subsidence, mine water pollution and other legacy issues. It oversees 75 mine water treatment schemes across Britain, handling and treating over 122 billion litres of mine water every year. This protects over 350 km (200 miles) of rivers, several important regional aquifers, biodiversity and amenity land.

ECS have committed to install two new 210 kW pumps, both with a capacity of 110 litres per second at this important site for the Coal Authority. These two units will be located 116 metres below ground level, this being 30 m and 60 m lower retrospectively than the two original pumps. Modification of the existing steel headwork platform will be undertaken to accommodate the new pumps and facilitate the service and inspection of this important installation for years to come.

As part of this contract ECS will fit new coated pipework to the required depth and replace the existing HV/LV electrical transformer. The contract also includes the design, build and installation of a new motor control centre (MCC) and renewal of the lighting, power supply and heating services.

Lee Pearson, the ECS Northern Contract Manager, says: "These pumping schemes are designed to purify recovered water by treating it through cascades, reed beds and other systems. Our task is to maintain the functionality of the site while we also upgrade the pumping equipment. This is typical of a lot of our work, which can be classified as protecting and improving the environment."

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August 2021

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