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Northwest Pump Station #1 Electrical Upgrades

Fort Wayne, Indiana

When Fort Wayne City Utilities acquired an additional service area from another water provider in the northern portion of the Northwest High-Pressure Zone, that increased demand led to an upgrade of the Northwest Pump Station #1, including additional pumps to maintain current demand. Much of the existing electrical equipment remained and dates back to the mid-1980s when the station was original installed, with that equipment reaching or exceeding design expectancy. Failure of the electrical equipment and subsequent failure of the station would negatively impact Fort Wayne water service customers.

Wessler’s electrical team and field staff completed an evaluation of the existing equipment and recommended needed replacements. This evaluation included a review of the condition of the existing equipment, availability of parts and service, failure risk analysis and an evaluation for the use of variable frequency drives over soft starts.

At the completion of the evaluation, Wessler’s team began work on the design of the electrical improvement project that would allow City officials to contract for the procurement and replacement of the aging equipment.

The project included replacement of the entire electrical system from the load side of the existing automatic transfer switch, removal of the existing electrical system including motor control center, variable frequency drives and an existing dehumidification system. The project also included installation of new electrical equipment including a power panel, reduced voltage solid state starters, conduit and wire, relocation of existing power monitoring equipment, and other improvements.

One of the key components of the design project was documenting the existing cable routing and panel layouts. One panel in particular was a result of several past project tie-ins. Before Wessler could recommend a design approach, we first had to understand the existing conditions. Our field crew worked directly with facility maintenance and electrical staff to trace, identify, label, and document all of the panel wires providing a valuable resource for this project and future projects.

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Wayne C. Moore, P.E.

Electrical Group Head

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