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City of Chicago installs over 300 Rotork electric actuators in water purification plant upgrade

Hundreds of Rotork multi-turn and part-turn IQ electric actuators and gearboxes have been installed as part of a US water filtration plant upgrade.

The City of Chicago Department of Water Management specified over 300 Rotork intelligent IQ actuators combined with IW quarter-turn worm gearboxes and over 200 IQT part-turn actuators to replace water hydraulic cylinders at the Eugene Sawyer Water Purification Plant.

Formally known as the South Water Purification Plant, the site was renamed in 2016 in honour of Chicago’s former mayor, Eugene Sawyer, and supplies drinking water to the population of Chicago.

The Rotork actuators will operate 12 to 30 inch butterfly valves to provide improved flow control for water travelling into and out of the facility’s sand filters. Water from Lake Michigan is collected from a crib, a structure which serves as an offshore water intake away from pollution closer to shore, and transported to the Eugene Sawyer Purification Plant.

The water will be allowed to flow into the Eugene Sawyer plant’s sand filters via a 30 inch valve controlled by Rotork’s intelligent IQ actuator. The actuator will also carry out modulating duties to ensure the filter is kept full. The water will then seep through the sand bed and supporting gravel material before it is controlled by a 12 inch valve operated by a part-turn continuous modulating IQTM actuator to be sent to the clear water well and distributed to the public.

IQ actuators will also handle backwash and drain processes while the IQT actuators will carry out surface wash flow control.

The availability of Rotork Site Services (RSS) support for actuator maintenance was key in securing the order – RSS carried out initial set up of all the actuators. RSS field support for repairs, commissioning, maintenance and upgrades is carried out by a fully trained and experienced team of service engineers. Actuators can also be upgraded, repaired and tested at one of Rotork’s global workshops while RSS can assist with planned shutdowns through preventative maintenance support and project management.

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