A recently completed project for an energy-from-waste system has highlighted one of the ways in which fluid mechanics expertise can help facilitate the production of sustainable energy in Scotland.
The project was undertaken for SHARC Energy systems, an international renewable energy company that provides sustainable water heating and space conditioning. The company is in the process of developing a district heating system for high-rise housing blocks in the east end of Glasgow that will use processed sewage as a fuel.
“We were presented with a fluid mechanics problem,” explains Project Engineer, Neil Bowman. “A key part of the proposed system involves extracting waste from the sewer and conveying this fluid to pumping and processing stations. We were asked to look at the geometry and number of pipe connections to the sewer to ensure that the system could deliver a specified minimum flow rate under worse-case conditions, for example in a very dry year in which there would be relatively low levels of fluid in the sewer.”
In order to ensure that the system could comfortably operate within its design envelope, Neil assessed not only the connections to the sewer but also the location of the pumping house. He evaluated the optimum configuration that would require a minimum amount of excavation and which would allow gravity to do most of the work carrying the sewage.
“Scottish Water did a network analysis over time, this allowed us to look at the impact of changing conditions,” says Neil. “We then provided the client with flow rates for a set of scenarios with different connections and geometries. This has allowed them to move forward with their plans.”
For more information, contact Neil Bowman