Choosing the Ideal Dam Aeration System

Aerating your dam is one of the best things you can do for the health of your aquatic ecosystem, however, not all dam aeration systems are created equal. Lets dive into the factors to consider when selecting the right system for your specific needs.

Wastewater dams need aeration for a number of reasons. Some need aeration to reduce BOD, COD, or ammonia/nitrogen [TKN]. Some just need a reduction in odours, and some may have blue-green algae issues. Some aeration systems help with some of these, but not others, some are efficient, yet difficult and/or expensive to maintain, some are excellent at all aspects, and others just don’t suit the aeration of dams at all.

Diffused air systems, while excellent and very efficient when used in concrete basins, are not ideal for dam aeration, because they do not provide a mixing function, and would be very difficult/expensive to maintain. They also provide no treatment for blue/green algae.

Submersible or jet aerators are compact and can achieve high oxygen transfer rates, and are excellent for tank aeration, but they do have some drawbacks for dam aeration. Firstly, they produce their best oxygen transfer at deep levels [up to 7 metres]. Next, they require lifting devices [cranes], which makes repairs expensive and difficult, and renders monitoring or preventative maintenance, non-existent.

Low-speed surface [or splasher] aerators are also used for dam aeration. They are available in a large range of sizes [from just 1kW, up to in excess of 100kW] and offer excellent oxygen transfer. They do have some downsides though. They can only be accessed by crane or boat, making them expensive and/or dangerous to maintain or monitor. Replacing gearbox oil is also not a cheap operation. On top of this, they naturally create aerosols [because of the nature of their operation], which may cause health issues for operators and the general public, particularly in windy locations].

Draft Tube aerators are also used in dam aeration. They float on pontoons and can be placed around a dam for the best effect. They can transfer oxygen at a reasonable rate, but they do have a few drawbacks. Their propellers can get caught up in wastewater debris, they can only be accessed by crane, boat or tethers, and they can capsize in high winds

An option that does tick all of the boxes, is the EchoStorm venturi aeration system from Gorman-Rupp. The system utilises a self-priming pump to draw water from the dam, then at pressure, forces it through a static venturi unit to draw in atmospheric air, mix and condition it with the water, and “re-inject” the water back into the dam, saturated with dissolved oxygen.

This is a bank-mounted system, so operators can safely access the pump and EchoStorm without the need for a crane or boat or infrastructure like floating walkways. This delivers the opportunity for regular monitoring and the implementation of inexpensive preventative maintenance programs, improving reliability, extending equipment service life, and minimizing the incidence of annoying breakdowns.

Smaller systems can deliver Oxygen Transfer rates of up to 1.5 kgO2/hour, with the largest system able to deliver 16 kgO2/hour. For larger needs, the system is highly scalable by using multiple aerators, even driving multiple units from one pump.

The introduced oxygen helps with the reduction of BOD, COD and TKN, while the velocity from the nozzles aids mixing. If the treatment of blue/green alga is a goal, the mixing zone within the EchoStorm bursts the vacuoles within algae cells to sink them and prevent the photosynthesis cycle, steadily reducing it.

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Watch videos here showcasing Gorman-Rupp pumps & Aerators

Why Choose the EchoStorm Water Aerator?

Comparing Gorman-Rupp’s “EchoStorm” Aerator With Other Aerators

Bega Project Transformation With The EchoStorm Water Aerator

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Our expert team is standing by for any questions you have about how best to configure your pump system.

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Gorman-Rupp Pumps & Aerator

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The EchoStorm water aerator from Gorman-Rupp offers the benefits of safety, reliability and ease of access to water aeration applications.

Because these units are mounted on the bank [instead of floating on the water or being submerged in it], access is much less complicated and safer, while delivering oxygen transfer outcomes.

The EchoStorm water aerator benefits::

  • No cranes or row boats for maintenance
  • Easily accessed
  • Less downtime
  • Reliable and easy to maintain
  • Easily scalable and low cost of ownership
  • Thorough mixing – no dead spots
  • High SOTR (Standard Oxygen Transfer rate)
  • Oxygenated water

These aeration units are used in conjunction with Gorman Rupp self-priming centrifugal pumps to deliver solutions for the following applications:

  • Lagoon and basin water aerator
  • Oxidation ditch aeration
  • Lake destratification and algae control
  • Odour control
  • Sludge digestion
  • Septage treatment

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The Gorman-Rupp Super T Series self-priming centrifugal wastewater/sewage pump has been the world benchmark for this technology since 1963 (>50 years). They have been designed for economical, trouble-free operation, with superior solids handling capability and a large inspection cover to access pump internals for service or blockage removal. Super T Series pumps now have several variants that either improve solids handling or efficiency.

Advantages include:

  • Self-Priming pump has the ability to mount high and dry above the wet well (not in it)
  • Up to 7.6 metre suction lift
  • Handle spherical solids to 76mm in diameter
  • Low cost of ownership
  • Greatly reduced OH&S issues – no more working over water/heights/cranes/heavy swinging weights
  • Surface-mounted pumps with easy access for monitoring or service
  • Advanced safety features including pressure relief valve to protect operators
  • Improved maintenance features to greatly reduce maintenance time and costs, with removable rotating assembly
  • A variety of materials of construction to handle abrasive and/or corrosive fluids
  • “Eradicator” technology for handling rags, wet wipes, rope etc
  • “Eradicator Plus” technology for extreme-duty stringy materials applications

Super T Series With Eradicator
Super T Series with Eradicator Plus

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The Gorman-Rupp Ultra V Series is the most advanced self-priming centrifugal wastewater and sewage pump range on the market today.

They are high performance, high head, and high-efficiency pumps, designed to deliver a long and low maintenance service life, with a low cost of ownership.

Ultra V Series pumps are now also available with “Eradicator” technology to enable them to handle stringy materials such as rags, wet wipes, feathers and other debris that might otherwise block a pump.

Advantages include:

  • Ability to mount high and dry above the wet well [not in it]
  • Self-priming to 7.6 metres
  • Flows to 110 L/s and pressures upwards of 95 metres
  • Efficiencies up to 20% higher than any other solids handling self-primer
  • Higher pressures (heads) (up to 300%) than any other solids handling self-primer
  • Greatly improved operator safety
  • Easy access for monitoring or service
  • Improved maintenance features to greatly reduce maintenance time and costs, with removable rotating assembly
  • A variety of materials of construction to handle abrasive and/or corrosive fluids

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Hydro Innovations is proud to distribute a broad range of quality, reliable and industry-leading industrial pumps and aerators.

Gorman-Rupp is the world leader in self-priming centrifugal wastewater pump technology, and invests heavily in R&D, and in training for their international representatives – like Hydro Innovations.

This puts us in an excellent position to make the very best recommendations for our Australian customers.

Our other suppliers, Ragazzini of Italy and EDUR of Germany, are also world leaders in their respective technologies (Peristaltic Pumps – Ragazzini, and Specialist centrifugal pumps – EDUR).

We carry a very large inventory of pumps and spare parts for all of these brands, to help us to deliver industry-leading service.

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