Welsh Water improves efficiency with new gearboxes 06 February 2012

Welsh Water is reporting improved efficiency at one of its sewage treatment works since replacing old worm gear drives on six half-bridge scrapers with planetary gearboxes that were a direct fit for the original boxes.

Welsh Water says it achieved the swap without the cost or downtime of remanufacturing gearboxes or using bridge structures, thanks to Brevini's ability to design drive systems into existing footprints.

"This project was a little trickier than previous ones as the worm gearboxes were set well back and there was a foot-mounted housing containing the bearing assembly to support the bridge," states Brevini UK sales manager Dave Brown.

"However, we were able to provide a planetary solution that utilises the highly rated taper roller bearings in the output assembly to support the bridge directly, by fitting the wheel onto the gearbox shaft," he explains.

Brown makes the point that planetary gearboxes can efficiently accommodate the high reduction ratios and tough duties common in the water industry. All that is required it to verify that the gearbox lifetime will exceed the design life of the equipment it is driving.

In total six planetary gearboxes were delivered, each with smaller diameter shafts than standard to accommodate STW's standard wheel sizes. Technicians on-site only had to drill holes in the existing structure for each drive's foot bracket.

Brian Tinham

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