Tag Archives: Integrated Pump Rental

INNOVATIVE SEWAGE POND DREDGING FOR SUGAR PRODUCER

The recent upgrading of sewerage facilities at an Eswatini sugar producer required more than the dredging of a sewage pond – but Integrated Pump Rentals was up to the demanding task. 

Cleaning of a settlement pond usually involves the pumping of high solids material to another nearby dam. In this case, however, there were no containment areas for the sewage on the customer’s site. According to Ruaan Venter, rental development manager at Integrated Pump Rental, an innovative solution had to be found to capture and store the sewage. 

“The pond in question was close to the company’s sugar cane fields, so absolutely no spillage was permitted onto those lands during our cleaning process,” says Venter. 

At the heart of the cleaning operation was Integrated Pump Rentals’ well-proven SlurrySucker mobile dredging unit. On this project, the SlurrySucker Mini was employed, emptying the pond of 30 to 40% solids material at 150 m3 per hour.

“To contain the sewage, we procured specialised geotextile bags measuring 30 m long by 18 m in circumference,” he says. “These were laid out on a large area near the dam, which had been allocated for this purpose.”

Before the sewage could be pumped into the bags, however, it required the addition of flocculant to facilitate the separation of solids and liquid. This was achieved using an in-line dosing system, feeding the flocculant into the pipeline from a 1000 litre tank. Effective mixing in the pipeline could be reached over a 100 m distance of the pipeline. 

“After two weeks, we had filled three of these large bags with the material from the pond,” Venter says. 

As the water separated from the solid material, it was able to drain through the bags’ porous sides and flow back into the pond. The solids could then be left to dry out in the geotextile bags, after which it could be moved from the site and discarded safely. 

MINE ADDS ANOTHER SYKES TO SOLVE FLOODING

When heavy rains flooded a Northern Cape mine recently, it was the tried-and-tested Sykes XH150 dewatering pump from Integrated Pump Rental that once again came to the rescue. 

The mine, which already had one of these units in operation, signed a long-term contract for a second unit – replacing a competitor’s product on site. In response to the rains, the pump was required to dewater a flooded area at a 100 metre static head pumping a distance of 1,8 km though a 250 mm pipeline. 

“The ingress of water into the mine could cause major issues, so effective and efficient dewatering is critical to ensure productivity and safety,” says Andre Strydom, rental development manager at Integrated Pump Rental. “The Sykes XH150 has an established reputation as a hardworking, reliable dewatering pump, which is a key reason why many customers in the mining sector specify this pump for challenging dewatering applications.”

Known for its rapid response to urgent calls from customers, Integrated Pump Rental was able to deliver technical assistance and ensure an appropriate pump solution for the application. Both Sykes dewatering pumps provided to the mine are mounted on a double-axle, heavy-duty site trailers, allowing for rapid transportation to site and quick installation. 

“The Sykes XH150 pump offers automatic priming and solids handling capability,” says Strydom. “It also has one of the best shaft stiffness ratios of any automatic priming pump on the market.”

The pump can be primed with long suction hoses and can manage suction lifts of up to nine metres. Low fuel consumption is another important benefit, adding to the pump’s cost effectiveness when used for dewatering over extended periods of time. 

“The pump’s ability to operate in ‘snore’ conditions accommodates applications where suction levels fluctuate,” he says. “It can also run dry for extended periods, thanks to the oil bath mechanical seal assembly.”

SLURRYSUCKER SUCCEEDS WHERE OLD METHODS FAIL

Integrated Pump Rental’s innovative SlurrySucker desilting barge is successfully cleaning a large process dam for a coal mine in Mpumalanga, after past attempts by numerous contractors had failed. 

The dam – at a mine in the Delmas area – measures a substantial 300 metres by 100 metres in size, with a six metre depth. It was unable to function effectively as it had become 90% filled with coal slurry from the processing plant. Ruaan Venter, rental development manager at Integrated Pump Rental, says the pond is also lined with a geomembrane to prevent the coal slurry from contaminating the groundwater.

“Manual excavation methods had been tried by previous contractors, but these could not efficiently move the required volume of sediment,” says Venter. “In fact, some attempts made matters worse by damaging the environmentally important membrane under the pond. In addition, extensive reed growth in the dam also hampered the desilting efforts.”

By contrast, the application of the SlurrySucker was able to meet the safety priorities of the mine while cost effectively removing the slurry. Operating the barge remotely from a defined distance away from the dam’s edge is much safer than having personnel or equipment on the dam itself, he says. Operators also use a buddy system with a harness for added safety. Extensive training of operators was also required by the mine before work began.

“We were able to float the SlurrySucker on those parts of the dam with sufficient water, while also employing hydro-mining on the drier areas,” he says. “This allowed our high-solids pumps to dredge quickly and cost effectively over the whole area of the dam.”

Two monitoring guns, each fed by a 7-bar high pressure discharge hose, are blasting the drier slurry towards the discharge point. Specialised pumps with chopper-impellers are employed, which can deal with the dislodged reeds without becoming clogged. After setting up on site in December 2020, Integrated Pump Rental is expected to complete the slurry removal process by the second quarter of 2021, says Venter.

WEST COAST MINER INSTALLS SLURRYSUCKER FOR POND DREDGING

Following a successful one-week trial, heavy minerals company Tronox Mineral Sands took delivery of a SlurrySucker dredging unit from Integrated Pump Rental. 

The SlurrySucker will remove sand from the process dams near the Tronox mining operation on South Africa’s West Coast. This installation enhances the safety and efficiency of the dredging process, which previously had to be carried out manually by a team of underwater divers. 

“The pumping capacity of the dredging unit will ensure optimal operation of Tronox’s dams which need to be kept at the required storage volumes at all times,” says Ruaan Venter, rental development manager at Integrated Pump Rental.

The dredging unit will assist Tronox to regularly clean sediment from our process dams, reducing the risk of pump blockage or failure. This solution aims to provides rapid results on a cost-effective basis, while the remote operation raises safety levels. 

To withstand the corrosive effects of salt water, the SlurrySucker has been equipped with a stainless steel casing as well as stainless steel components including wear plates and impellers. The units were manufactured locally at Integrated Pump Rental’s facility in Jet Park, Johannesburg.

The SlurrySucker dredging unit comprises a floating barge with an electric hoist operated from the side of the dam. This ensures a high level of safety with the barge being operated remotely, including the lifting and lowering of the pump. At Tronox, the SlurrySucker is designed to pump 150 cubic metres per hour of sediment – with a solids content of 50% – back to the thickener in the plant.

“The electrically-driven unit also makes sure that there is no risk of contaminating the water in the dams with diesel or oil leakage,” Venter says. The compact unit is easy to transport between the dams requiring dredging, making for optimal usage of the equipment. 

With its local manufacturing capability and technical support offering, Integrated Pump Rental is well equipped to maintain the SlurrySucker out of its modern Johannesburg facility.

REGULAR DESILTING VITAL FOR MINE PONDS

Ensuring sufficient water storage capacity in mines’ process ponds is crucial for the optimal functioning of mineral treatment plants, and this means regular desilting must be conducted.

This is according to Lee Vine, managing director of Integrated Pump Rental, whose company is frequently called upon to urgently attend to process ponds that have silted up. 

“While too much silt in these ponds can disrupt plant operations, this situation also raises the risk of over-topping which can lead to costly environmental damage,” says Vine. “Our locally developed SlurrySucker system can readily address the problem, but it should not be left too long. Ideally, mines would have a pond monitoring strategy and a regular schedule for desilting operations.”

He highlights that fully functional process ponds are increasingly important elements of a mine’s water balance, as mines actively pursue water conservation efforts to make themselves more self-sufficient. Strategies include more reuse of mine water, so ever-closer management of water flows is necessary.

It is usually possible to observe the bank of silt building up once it fills about 40% of a pond’s volume, he says. This indicates that prompt action is required. 

“With our proven technology, the desilting is relatively straightforward and not labour-intensive. It can be conducted effectively by just a couple of operators with the required training,” he says. He notes that recovering the value of the minerals in the silt can often cover the cost of desilting, with many mines being designed to recycle the sediment back into their process plants.

Choosing whether to contract-out the desilting function or conduct it in-house will depend on each mine’s conditions and preferences, says Vine. Integrated Pump Rental can provide the desilting service on a turnkey contract basis or rent the necessary equipment to the mine. For some mines, it might make sense to invest in their own SlurrySucker unit.

“We work with customers to find the right solution, assessing their detailed requirements before making a proposal,” Vine says. “Where mines wish to conduct the work themselves, we can train their staff and fully support the equipment with prompt parts availability and all the necessary engineering and maintenance services.”

NON-STOP DEWATERING UNDER ALL CONDITIONS WITH SYKES

Reliable dewatering underpins the success of projects from construction and mining to municipal works and flood recovery, and this is where Sykes pumps have earned their formidable reputation.

“The Sykes range of dewatering pumps are known for fast and effective control and removal of everything from clean water to slimes, sewage, sludge and liquids laden with solids,” says Lee Vine, managing director of Integrated Pump Rental, which markets the range in southern Africa.

Vine highlights the pumps’ hardened stainless steel internal components as key to their robustness, allowing them to deal with unpredictable water quality across applications in many industries.

“The tough 316 stainless steel impeller and wear plate construction make the Sykes pumps ideal for harsh duties on construction sites, in mines and in sewage bypass environments – with high water flow and long pipe runs,” he says.

Among the popular options is the Sykes Primax Contractors Range of diesel-driven pumps. These are cost efficient and fully automatic priming pumps, with an oil bath mechanical seal assembly allowing units to run dry for long periods. They can self-prime with long suction hoses and manage lifts of up to 9 metres. Users can rely on the pumps not to clog up easily, as they can handle solid matter of up to 90 mm in size.

For more demanding lifts, the Sykes Xtra High Head model has pumping capabilities that reach maximum heads of over 200 metres, with series and parallel configurations to facilitate higher heads and increased flow rates.

Not having to continually attend to the pumps is a major advantage, adds Vine. If water levels fluctuate, the pump will ‘snore’ safely until there is enough liquid to allow it to reprime itself automatically.

“Sykes pumps can therefore be run mainly operator-free, and for longer,” he says. “Our diesel-powered units come standard with a fuel supply of at least 27 hours; this is considerably longer than the usual 12-hour refill intervals.”

Vine emphasises, though, that careful selection is vital to ensure optimal performance in any specific application. The team at Integrated Pump Rental, with their technical expertise and decades of experience in the market, can advise on the most suitable and efficient dewatering method.

TRASH PUMPS IDEAL FOR DIRTY WATER WITH LARGE SOLIDS

Dewatering activities on large construction and infrastructure project sites is not always a simple task. In fact, pumping dirty water containing large amounts of debris calls for a ‘trash pump’, according to Henru Strydom, operations manager at Integrated Pump Rental.

“Contractors often find themselves having to pump water that contains hard and soft solids such as trash, gravel, stones, leaves and twigs,” Strydom says. “In many instances, the construction site needs dewatering to be done at a consistent rate and needs to reduce the chance of a pump clogging with this kind of material. This is why a trash pump is a popular and reliable option, and it offers versatility in terms of its configuration.”

Integrated Pump Rental, with its capacity to design and assembly pump sets in-house, can customise these for the user’s specific site conditions.

“Our comprehensive pump rental fleet  has included trash pumps for some time, and more recently we have been tailor making trash pump sets for customers on request,” Strydom says. “By configuring the pump set to en end-user’s specifications we can ensure the pump dewatering solution is fit-for-purpose.”

The trash pump sets provided by the company are usually trailer-mounted with a diesel engine for optimal mobility, but Strydom says these can also be static units driven by electric motors.

Ensuring proper pump selection means understanding basic requirements like the head height to be pumped, the quantity and flow rate required, and the distance over which the water will be transferred. Trash pumps can typically handle solids up to 76 mm in size with flow rates of up to about 110 litres per second and a maximum head of 32 metres.

“Our self-priming, tried-and-tested trash pumps are often considered as the real workhorses of the construction pump market,” Strydom notes. “Apart from dewatering sites, these can also be easily moved into place where large pipelines have to be temporarily bypassed, for instance, moving large volumes of water quickly and dependably.”

Contractors even use multiple units in remote sites where access is difficult, allowing them to avoid the use of cranes to move and place large single pumping units.

Strydom highlights that Integrated Pump Rental’s in-house experience in designing and assembling trash pump sets also allows it to offer customised service level agreements, based on customers’ preferences and specific conditions. The company’s expertise and service capability mean units can be constantly supported with maintenance, repairs and replacement parts.

STAINLESS STEEL PUMP SOLUTION FOR NAMIBIAN MINE

The harsh coastal conditions at a mining operation in Namibia demanded a dewatering solution beyond the ordinary, so it turned to Integrated Pump Rental.

Its remote location, combined with its highly corrosive environment, meant that the mine needed its equipment to be wear-resistant and require minimal maintenance. According to Steve du Toit, rental development manager at Integrated Pump Rental, its solution in this case was enhanced by a customised design.

“Our Sykes diesel driven pumps come standard with stainless steel internal wear-parts, but for this particular application we included a stainless steel volute – for a fully stainless steel pump,” says du Toit. “In addition, we constructed the entire pump set out of grade 316 stainless steel at our facility in Jet Park.”

The company designs and engineers its pump sets in-house according to customers specifications, and in line with mining safety standards. For this project, therefore, stainless steel was also used for the integrated fuel tank, the drop discharge pipework, the single-point lifting frame and the engine mountings.

With its efficient working practices and established supply chain, the pump set was supplied to the customer within five days of the order being received. The work and handover were carried out during South Africa’s hard lockdown in the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic. Integrated Pump Rental was active during this period as an essential service provider to the mining sector.

“Our local manufacture by experienced professionals ensures a cost effective product that is built to the highest standards,” he says. “It also assures customers that our support and maintenance is similarly world class.”

The Sykes CP150 pump set boasts a maximum flow of up to 172 litres per second, pumping heads of up to 60 metres, with a solids handling capability of 77 mm. It is driven by an 83 kW Perkins diesel engine, a popular model in the mining market which is easy to maintain.

“The Sykes pump set can be towed behind a light vehicle, so mines can easily move it in and out of a pit as required,” du Toit says. “Where towing is not possible or permitted, the unit can also be lifted without the need for qualified riggers. Its single-point lifting lug allows the balanced unit to be conveniently lifted with one sling.”

It can also be skid-mounted if it is not frequently moved, or mounted on a road trailer for ease of movement on public roads.

MAKE SURE ALL PUMPS ADD TO EFFICIENCY, URGES EXPERT

With difficult economic conditions only getting worse during the Covid-19 pandemic, pump users need to make the most of their operational inventory, even pumps that may be considered redundant.

Pump expert Lee Vine, managing director of specialist companies Integrated Pump Technology and Integrated Pump Rental, says all industries can benefit from improved pump efficiencies.

“In our daily contact with pump users, we ensure not only that the pumps we sell, and rent are looked after,” Vine says. “We also repair and refurbish other brands that customers have on their work sites.”

Their depth of technical capability is based on combined experience within the companies of some six decades in the pump business. While Integrated Pump Technology specialises in Grindex and Faggiolati slurry pumps and Leyboldt vacuum pumps, the Integrated Pump Rental business focuses on its locally produced SlurrySucker dredging system, Sykes diesel driven pump sets and the Grindex submersible range.

“To support our product ranges – and keep our own rental fleet in optimal condition – we invest continuously in our quality-accredited workshop facilities,” Vine says. “This includes extensive testing capability, with a test tank that can accommodate motors up to 150 kW in power.”

Workshop manager Fred Slabbert, a master electrician and millwright, highlights the value of optimising assets to cost effectively promote operational efficiency.

“With our experience of various pump brands, we make sure that all work is done to original equipment manufacturer (OEM) standards,” he says. “This gives customers peace of mind, and allows us to give a six-month warranty on repairs and refurbishment.”

Slabbert says pump reliability is now more important than ever, as mining and industrial operations must optimise uptime to remain profitable in these challenging economic times.

“We conduct professional assessments on any pumping equipment – even redundant units – for customers,” he says. “On the basis of a detailed condition report from us, along with a competitive quotation, companies can assess the refurbishment option – which usually makes good business sense all round.”

RAPID DEWATERING SOLUTION PROVIDED ACROSS BORDER

Reacting promptly to customer calls for dewatering solutions is what has set Integrated Pump Rental apart, especially in the mining sector. The company recently responded to an urgent need for a dewatering pump at an East African mine.

“If not dealt with promptly, flooding in a mine environment will not only impede productivity but in some cases, lead to unsafe working conditions,” managing director of Integrated Pump Rental, Lee Vine explains. “All of this will result in consequential losses which is why we understand the need to respond quickly to customer calls for dewatering solutions.”

In this recent example, a mine in an East African country reached out to this leading dewatering pump solution supplier. Unseasonably high rainfall had caused major flooding and the mine’s traditional suppliers had quoted long lead times to get equipment to the site. This obviously posed a major risk for the mine.

Vine explains that one of the company diesel driven Skykes pump sets had just completed its contract on a diamond mine in Lesotho and was en route back to the company’s facility in Johannesburg.

“The unit only had 160 hours on it and we immediately did a full assessment of the pump, serviced it and tested it on our in-house test rig to ensure that it would provide the performance and reliability required for its new task,” he says.

“What is most significant is that within one week of receiving the call from the mine, we were able to get the pump set ready, across border and installed on site dealing with the dewatering challenge,” Vine says.

The pump set comprises a Sykes XH150 high head diesel driven pump which is capable of a flow rate of 100 litres per second at a total dynamic head of 150 metres in this application. The skid mounted solution will more than capably deal with the dewatering application at the mine, and the customer made the decision to purchase the unit as opposed to renting it.