ABB drive helps create more sustainable environment at Sea Life Weymouth

The sharks, seals, penguins and other creatures at Sea Life Weymouth are benefitting from a more sustainable environment following the installation of an ABB variable speed drive.

Installing a variable speed drive (VSD) to the creature habitats’ water aeration system at Sea Life Weymouth has allowed the resident sea animals to enjoy a quieter, cleaner and greener environment. The centre will also benefit from lower operating costs and a reduction in energy usage.

The ABB drive was one of two previously deployed on a sea pump application. It was subsequently determined that only one drive was needed, freeing up the second to be used elsewhere. With the help of ABB Value Provider, IDS, the park identified an aeration system’s blower used to oxygenate water within the habitats housing the attraction’s thousands of aquatic residents, as a candidate for repurposing the VSD.

Following the retrofit, the VSD enabled a 10 percent reduction of the blower’s motor speed, resulting in an energy saving of £839 per year. By finely controlling the valves on the air lines running to each tank, the park’s staff can adjust the pressure depending on a display’s occupants. The blower now runs quieter than before, helping to create a more pleasant environment for guests viewing the animals.

A rapid installation and commissioning lasting approximately one hour ensured no disruption of the air supply, assuring the safety of the animals. Blaise Ford, managing director, IDS, says: “This was an enjoyable project to work on as it’s not every day that we get to work with seals, stingrays and penguins. However, at the same time the pressure was on to get the job done quickly to ensure an uninterrupted supply of air for the habitats. The installation went swimmingly!”

The project reflects SEA LIFE Weymouth and its operator Merlin Entertainments’ commitment to ensuring that energy efficiency and carbon reduction are at the heart of its operations, as Dare Ilori, Group Head of Sustainability, explains: “Sustainability is a fundamental part of our values at Merlin Entertainments, and this project was not so much about saving money, but about searching for every opportunity we possibly can to improve the energy efficiency of our operations, and to protect our planet and the creatures within our oceans. Every saving we can make is worthwhile, however small.”

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