The North Pine water treatment plant in southeast Queensland has undergone more than $5 million in major electrical upgrades to improve water safety in the region.
The upgrades include the installation of a high voltage (HV) switchboard to ensure the plant continues to operate at peak performance.
The plant, which mainly supplies drinking water to the regions of Moreton Bay, Brisbane and Sunshine Coast, is capable of producing 250 million liters of drinking water every day, equivalent to a hundred Olympic size swimming pools.
Queensland Water Minister Glenn Butcher said recent flooding in the southeast has highlighted the importance of Seqwater’s infrastructure network.
“The North Pine Water Treatment Plant is a vital cog in the wheel, so I’m delighted this upgrade was able to happen, to ensure it continues to meet demand well into the future. “, Mr. Butcher said.
“I would like to commend the staff at Seqwater for their hard work over the past few months as it has been vital to the region’s water supply during the extreme weather conditions we have experienced.”
Seqwater chief operating officer Stuart Cassie said the upgrade project improved the plant’s longevity and ensured it was ready to meet long-term water supply demand.
“As well as supplying Moreton Bay locally, potable water treated at the North Pine Wastewater Treatment Plant can also be transported north to increase supply on the Sunshine Coast and south to Brisbane. when needed,” Cassie said.
“The plant is one of our most important assets within the SEQ water network, and as the population grows, it must operate at optimum levels to meet water demand.
“Projects like this show how Seqwater now plans to ensure water security for the region in the future.”
The new HV switchboard, 20 m long and weighing more than 16 tons, can operate at 11,000 volts, nearly double the previous switchboard which was reaching the end of its life.
“Similar to the distribution board in your home, the HV distribution board controls electrical circuits and distributes power to ensure the plant operates efficiently and safely,” Cassie said.
“The standard includes remote monitoring and automation systems that have improved on-site security, allowing day-to-day operations to be carried out from an adjacent room.
“The installation took over two months and involved complex switchovers between several areas of the plant and extremely complex switching operations that were carried out while the plant was still supplying water.
“The team designed an innovative solution to install the switchboard, improve plant electrical safety and ensure the reliability of this critical asset for the next 25 to 30 years.”