Pollution Plunging Thanks to Falkirk Business

Posted: Thursday 8th November 2012

A new device developed by Falkirk based business IDS has been hailed a success in their efforts to reduce Scotland’s pollution, with the company announced as the prestigious Scottish Water ‘Supplier of the Year’.

The ‘Deragger II’ was developed by IDS as a simple solution to one of the main operational issues experienced in the sewage treatment industry - preventing blocked pumps ‘ragging’ and ensuring a clean cycle.

With more than 2000 waste water pumping stations (WWPS) located throughout Scotland, Scottish Water dedicates a significant amount of resource and budget on an almost daily basis dealing with pump blockages, with engineers having to attend the site each time to manually remove the blockage.

IDS developed the innovative electric motor management system using state of the art technology to provide an anti-ragging functionality, and following an extremely successful pilot at various WWPS, the device has now gone commercial and is already paying dividends for Scottish Water.

Iain Doherty, Director, IDS said:

“Currently some of Scottish Water’s WWPS’s trip on average five times per week, resulting in engineers having to visit these sites each time to re-programme them. The cost implication from call outs and out of hours working was clearly significant, and with this in mind, we set to work on a system which would reduce the amount of call outs but also help to reduce pollution due to continuity of process.

“The ‘Deragger II’ has been tested at 10 different Scottish Water sites in recent months, and the return on investment has already been measured in weeks. To now be recognised as ‘Supplier of the Year’ is a great achievement for all of the team, and we look forward to rolling the product out across the country.”

As well as considerable cost savings from the ‘Deragger II’, there are also significant corresponding environmental benefits.

Scottish Water’s waste water pumping stations sit near all types of watercourses, including burns, rivers, lochs and the sea, helping to protect flora and fauna all over Scotland. The ‘Deragger II’ is already helping their infrastructure by improving the overall watercourse quality, and in turn reducing pollution.

George Ponton, Head of Research and Innovation with Scottish Water, said:

“Despite the advances in wastewater pump designs and their ability to pass rags without blockages, the number of pump blockages has remained problematic, especially in small stations where the pumps are less able to deal with excessive amounts of ragging.

”The Deragger II has been successfully trialled and implemented at a number of sites and we are developing a programme to roll this out further. This device is doing a great job in helping to contribute to our overall operational performance which in turn will help us to protect Scotland’s natural environment.”

IDS has seen significant growth since the company went operational in 2002, effectively growing from Director Iain Doherty’s bedroom to a company with more than 60 staff and plans to expand to at least 100 by the end of this year.

The company is currently looking to move to bigger premises in the Falkirk area with more office and workshop space, and has set its sights firmly on developing the ‘Deragger II’ and also launching alternative devices that are currently being worked on.

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