How to size and select the best solution to avoid water hammer in a water pump station

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Join Bermad Water Technologies Air Valve and Product Manager, Colin Kirkland, in this technical training seminar on how to avoid water hammer in a water pumping station. In this presentation, learn more about:

  • Understanding the problem of water hammer
  • What information is needed to best determine a solution
  • How to analyse data to determine a potential solution
  • Column separation air valve solutions
  • Minimising the impact of daily surges
  • Preventing issues from power failure
  • Using fast acting pressure relief valves


Hi, welcome to another video technical seminar by Bermad Water Technologies. My name is Colin Kirkland and I’m one of the engineers at Bermad. The purpose of this video demonstration is to really talk about water hammer in pumping stations. We want to give you a little bit of advice on 30 years experience that we’ve got, looking at lots of problems that happens at pump stations and pipe networks where water hammer occurs at these locations.

And what we really want to do is share some information and share some knowledge of some of the potential solutions which we have, which may be suitable for your location. So this is designed for designers, operators, users, anyone who’s working in a pump station in mining irrigation, water supply, or in buildings where they potentially are having issues or surges at pump stations themselves. So, with all that said, let’s get into the content.

What we’re going to discuss a little bit about in this seminar is really understanding what the problem actually is in the station itself. In many instances, it can be quite complex, really trying to understand why that solution is coming.

So we want to really try and get a lot of information to really understand where the problem is actually coming from. With this information, what we really want to try and determine is once we’ve gathered a lot of information on how the pumps work, what they do and their function and understood something about the hydraulics, we can then potentially come up with a solution that might be suitable for the problem that occurs.

Now, one of the key things about getting this right, is really analysing and getting very good data on what the pump performance is, the application, how it works, how the pumps ramp up, how the ramp down and generally what the issues are. So we’re going to be asking a lot of information about what’s actually required.

Um, once we’ve got all that data, we’ll talk a little bit about column separations. So that’s one of the potential problems that can occur in that pump station. If power fails or something goes wrong, we’ll discuss a little bit about what column separation is and how we can best utilise that situation to mitigate the surge.

We’ll talk a little bit about what we call a pump control type application. So this is a product that’s going to stop the surge happening in the start, but we need to know that it’s compatible with the pipeline and the application. So we’ll talk a little bit about that too as well.

We’re going to talk about something that occurs if there’s power failures. So if a pump was to stop in an uncontrolled mode through power failure, or losing prime in the suction or something like that, we want to talk a little bit about surge anticipation. That’s one of the options which we have to try to mitigate that search in the event of an uncontrolled pump shut down.

So we’ll go into the ins and outs about what we do there. We’re also going to talk a little bit about fast acting relief valves. So, so why would we use a fast acting relief valve as opposed to a surge anticipating valve? Is it about the pipe length? Is it about the pump station, how it ramps up? So we’ll talk a little bit about the engineering and the hydraulics on why we would use some of those.

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  • A head-shot photo of Colin Kirkland, The Air Valve Product Manager & Victoria/Tasmania Technical Sales at BWT.

    Presented by

    by Colin Kirkland

    Air Valve Product Manager / Technical Training

    Colin has more than 40 years’ experience working in water supply and irrigation in Australia, including 24 years with BWT. He credits his training at Weir pumps in his native Scotland for providing him with a solid grounding in engineering.

    Colin is a mechanical engineer and a fitter and turner, who prides himself on taking a hands-on approach when designing and implementing successful installations across all aspects of BWT’s products and markets.

    As Air Valve Product Manager, Colin performs training seminars in pipeline design incorporating air release valves around Australia.

    Read more about Colin: Who’s who at BWT – Colin Kirkland

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