Posts Tagged ‘wastewater’

ABB wins new framework with Thames Water

December 7, 2015


ABB Measurement & Analytics in the UK has won a new multi-million pound framework agreement with Thames Water to supply its biggest ever offering of instrumentation equipment.

The framework will see ABB offering an expanded range of products to its previous supply of pressure instrumentation and electromagnetic flowmeters, with the addition of clamp-on ultrasonic flowmeters and borehole level transmitters sourced through its established partnerships with Katronic and Impress Sensors.

As well as the equipment from Katronic and Impress, ABB will also be supplying thermal mass and swirl flowmeters for use in applications including gas and biogas lines at Thames Water’s sewage treatment and thermal hydrolysis plants (THP) process digesters.

ABB has been a supplier to Thames Water for over 20 years, supplying battery and mains electromagnetic and coriolis flowmeters and gauge, absolute and differential pressure transmitters for use across the company’s distribution network and treatment works. The decision to keep us on board for these products and to award us the extended framework demonstrates Thames Water’s confidence in our ability to offer first class levels of service and product performance.

As the largest water and wastewater service provider in England, with over 13 million customers in London and the surrounding counties, Thames Water has set itself key targets in line with the outcomes focused approach set by Ofwat for AMP6. These include ensuring the continued performance of its water distribution network, minimising interruptions to supply caused by factors such as pressure problems and leakage, and ensuring the continued quality of the potable water supply.

By providing accurate data on conditions from around Thames Water’s distribution network, ABB’s equipment will play a key role in meeting these targets.


Who says there’s no innovation in water?

May 20, 2015


Whole Government reports have been devoted to the subject of innovation in the UK water industry. The general gist is that, despite all of the money and effort that has gone into upgrading the UK’s water infrastructure since the industry was privatised 25 years ago, much more needs to be done to encourage the uptake of new technologies that could help to improve overall operational efficiency.

This situation looks to change with the introduction of TOTEX (TOTal EXpenditure). With its focus on total life expenditure and holistic network performance, TOTEX looks set to provide a fertile environment for innovation, as companies evolve to develop their understanding of their existing asset base. In particular, TOTEX replaces the previous CAPEX/OPEX focus on ‘outputs’ with an ‘outcome’-led approach, which places a much greater emphasis on achieving and demonstrating asset and network effectiveness.

Whilst embracing innovation may well have been lacking amongst water operators, the supply chain at least appears to be ahead of the game. This was particularly apparent at the recent IWEX exhibition at the Birmingham NEC, where suppliers of technology, expertise and water-related services presented their latest offerings.

Taking ABB’s exhibition stand as a starting point, visitors were shown the latest examples of the latest instruments, analysers, drives and motors for potable and wastewater applications. Several of these represent cutting edge developments. Our AquaMaster 3 flowmeter for example, is the first in the world to combine integrated flow and pressure measurement in a single device. It is also the first to feature WITS DNP3 technology, which allows operators to gain, via GPRS communications, unprecedented access to a range of performance data, including diagnostic data on the status of the meter itself.

We also had the first in our range of digital optical sensors, which use the latest advances in optical measurement technology to deliver stable and accurate measurement whilst maintaining calibration without drift.

Both of these instruments are good examples of the type of equipment that can be used to deliver the big data from a network that can be turned into information and used as the basis for operational decision-making in a TOTEX environment.

Energy and maintenance form another crucial part of the TOTEX equation, with savings in either area making an obvious contribution to reducing overall lifetime costs. Again, ABB’s stand provided examples of some of the latest thinking in this area, including our SynRM (synchronous reluctance motor) and drive package for the water industry. Offering good partial load efficiency performance for all pumping applications, the package combines the benefits of a premium motor control with the highest levels of motor performance, giving ultimate efficiency and reliability to optimise pump system cost of ownership.

ABB’s stand was just one of dozens representing the latest developments in technology, spanning all aspects of the potable and wastewater treatment cycles.

In short, the innovation to help water companies transform their network performance is definitely out there. The challenge now is to move beyond a short term cost focus, which has too often led to the selection of the cheapest cost rather than the best value solutions, and work with suppliers to see what they can really offer.

If you’d like to find out more about how measurement instrumentation can be used to help you meet your TOTEX targets, why not request a copy of our new white paper ‘The role of performance data in optimising assets under TOTEX’. For a copy, email: or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ‘TOTEX’.

ABB to showcase latest technologies for water at IWEX 2015

March 18, 2015


We are delighted to announce that we will be exhibiting at IWEX at the NEC in Birmingham on 21st – 23rd April 2015. On stand (G26), we’ll be demonstrating how our products can help water companies to take a holistic approach to optimizing their network efficiency. Therefore we’ll be showcasing how we can help to boost efficiency across all areas, from reduced energy consumption through to enhanced data collection.

A fully automated interactive panel will show how our latest equipment can be integrated to provide customers with complete solutions for monitoring and controlling water supplies. The panel will feature a selection of instruments, variable speed drives, electric motors and control equipment.

The stand will also feature examples of our latest technologies for water and wastewater processes.

Products on display will include the AquaMaster 3 with WITS (Water Industry Telemetry Standard) DNP3 based open protocol. Based on tried and tested network technology, WITS DNP3 enables communication between different types of data acquisition and control equipment.

The AquaMaster 3 will be joined by Katronic’s range of KATflow ultrasonic clamp-on flowmeters. Featuring an intuitive menu, instrument setup wizard and the innovative Audible Sensor Positioning Assistant, the KATflow range makes the use of clamp-on ultrasonic flowmeters easier than ever before.

Also on display is the latest range of WIMES compliant low voltage electric motors. The motors were designed specifically to meet the UK’s Water Industry Mechanical and Electrical Specification. (WIMES 3.03 issue 6), created by The Pump Centre in conjuction with end users, consultants, contractors and manufactuturers, including ABB.

Alongside it is ABB’S SynRM (Synchronous Reluctance Motor) and drive package for the water industry. The package offers the benefits of a premium motor control alongside the highest levels of motor performance, giving ultimate efficiency and reliability to optimise pump system cost of ownership.

For more information, email or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ‘IWEX 2015’. Alternatively, please visit ABB’s water industry portal at

ABB achieves MCERTS for pH measurement

March 14, 2014

We are delighted to have achieved MCERTS certification for our AX400 pH measurement system, which forms part of our commitment to providing users with the best available techniques for their environmental monitoring requirements.

Tested in a field trial conducted over a period of 9 months on an effluent discharge at Pembroke Power Station, the AX400, coupled with our 7650, 7651, 7660 pH sensors, successfully demonstrated its suitability for use in treated wastewater, untreated wastewater and receiving water applications.

The achievement of MCERTS certification means that our AX400 pH measurement systems can be used in applications such as the power industry and potable water treatment.

The measurement of pH and Redox (ORP) in high purity water applications in power plants requires a number of essential elements to achieve accurate and stable readings. These include a stainless steel flowcell to minimize static effects and a reservoir-fed reference junction that overcomes KCI depletion and blockage to ensure a stable junction potential and simple reference junction replacement for low-cost maintenance.

The 7660 system has been proven to meet all these requirements by providing accurate measurement in samples below 20 μS/cm. This is especially ideal in boiler chemistry control applications, which require close control of pH levels. For applications up to 100 μS/cm the 7651 with polypropylene flowcell and the 7653 with a reservoir-fed reference electrode option provide an economical option.

For potable water treatment applications, accurate and stable pH measurement is required for optimum control at the coagulation stage of the process to minimize coagulation costs and treated water quality.

Measuring pH in coagulation processes can be particularly difficult, due to the high level of suspended solids and significant precipitation that can block the reference junction.

To overcome this problem, an ideal pH system should include an optional flowing reference junction that overcomes KCI depletion and blockage. Other features should also include simple reference junction replacement to enable low-cost maintenance in samples that contain high levels of particulates, and the availability of a low resistance glass electrode option to provide fast response in low temperature applications.

The 7600 Series meets all these requirements. The 7651, with polypropylene flowcell and the 7653, with a reservoir-fed reference electrode are an ideal low-cost option that can be readily replaced and installed. Both systems are highly-suited throughout the potable water treatment process.

For more information, email or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ‘MCERTS pH’.

A welcome change of direction for AMP 6?

November 22, 2013

Tony Hoyle, General Manager for ABB’s UK Measurement Products business, explains how the AMP process could finally be undergoing a much needed change of direction.

After years of acting contrary to the interests of many of the parties within it, it would seem that the AMP process is finally starting to undergo some welcome changes. Especially encouraging is Ofwat’s focus on ‘long term outcomes’ and its aim to give water companies greater flexibility in how they deliver them.

The prospect of a focus on the long term offers encouragement for those keen to see a smoother AMP process. In particular, a focus on the longer term would certainly help to avoid the detrimental impact caused by the ramping up and ramping down of activities during the transition between previous periods.

Partnerships and early starts

A quick scan of the marketplace offers encouraging signs of a changed approach to the new AMP period. Several of the UK’s largest water utilities are already well underway in selecting partners for their AMP 6 projects so that they can get work underway as soon as Ofwat releases funding.

The establishment of long-term partnerships could well present a workable and effective template for future AMP periods. As well as allowing the fulfilment of the immediate objectives of an AMP period, they could also provide the much-needed framework for continuity that has been badly lacking in previous years. By enabling partner companies to count on their continued association with a water company outside of the five year period, the creation of long-term partnerships could yield a wide variety of benefits that have not been fully realisable within the previous AMP structure.

Breeding innovation

In the same period that Apple has created and refined its market-leading iPhone and iPad products, there has been relatively little if any real change in the technologies used by water companies to treat, distribute and collect potable and wastewater.

The AMP process has done little to encourage technological innovation. Faced with an uncertain environment caused by the five year structure of an AMP period, companies have had little incentive to risk investing time, money and resources into new products and services.

It is to be hoped that the prospect of a more long-term approach will help pave the way for greater innovation. For suppliers especially, the prospect of working with water companies on projects across the AMP periods provides a much more attractive environment in which to provide and develop new products and services.


All of the indications are that AMP6 could well be the first all-round win scenario in the scheme’s history, delivering benefits for water companies, suppliers and customers. Whereas in the past water companies were reliant on Ofwat to set their investment priorities, the greater freedom being afforded within AMP 6 means that they can now focus more on their existing infrastructure, leading to potential improvements in performance that could increase effectiveness and, ultimately, profitability.

ABB to take the lead at Global Water Leakage Summit for the third time

February 6, 2013

We are proud to announce that we have been confirmed as the lead sponsor yet again at the 6th Global Water Leakage Summit, to be held at the Thistle Marble Arch, London 12th-13th March.

As a leading international supplier of technology for water and wastewater treatment and distribution applications, we will be taking a prominent role at the event, which provides the ideal platform for leakage practitioners and all those in the business of delivering improved efficiency and innovation for their particular water utilities, to share ideas and experiences on new advances in leakage reduction innovation and processes.

Our very own Global Product Manager, Tim Door, will be chairing panel discussions throughout the two day event, which will include a focus on best case examples showing how utility operators worldwide are tackling leakage through the application of the latest technologies and techniques.

James Chalmers, our Water Industry Manager for the UK and Northern Europe, will also be presenting at the summit on how water operators can reduce leakage through more efficient pressure management using variable speed drives.

As well as sponsoring the event, we will also be exhibiting our latest flow measurement technology that can be used to accurately pinpoint water leakage. Products on show at ABB’s stands (stands 12 and 13) will include the WaterMaster and AquaMaster 3 flowmeters.

The WaterMaster is ABB’s MCERTified, world class flowmeter for water and wastewater applications. With a wide flow range and unsurpassed accuracy, WaterMaster improves control and quality for applications in water treatment works and now features Profibus communications.

The AquaMaster 3 provides a total water management solution for revenue generation, district metering, water distribution, customer billing and leakage control. It offers a choice of mains and battery power options, plus a renewable power version which can draw power from either solar or wind-powered energy sources, offering a truly green solution.

The event also includes a Gala Dinner on the evening of the first day of the summit. Open to all delegates, the dinner will feature a charity auction on behalf of WaterAid, which works to provide the world’s poorest people with safe domestic water and sanitation and education on hygiene.

Now in its sixth occurrence, the Global Water Leakage Summit has established itself as a highly successful platform for raising awareness of water leakage issues. For more information, including how to register, visit

For more information about ABB’s range of products and services for leakage management, please visit . Alternatively, please call 0870 600 6122 or email ref. ‘leakage management’.