The new state-of-the-art facility has a 6 m test well with the capacity to hold one million litres of water. It is equipped to handle the testing of 120–150 pumps or complete systems each year, covering all industry sectors.
Along with the well itself, the associated test facilities at Colefield have also been upgraded. An increased power supply now allows testing of very large pump motors, rated up to 2MW. A new test console is linked to a variety of starter drives, including soft start motors, using a range of voltages.
Test engineers and visitors have been provided with a new, purpose-built office with full sound insulation and meeting space for up to 12 people. The outputs from all test instruments can be monitored there via two touchscreens, so there is no need for manual recording, and some of the testing is now semi-automatic, with data logged directly onto computers.
SPP is working on remote monitoring, via cameras and test screens, so that soon it will be possible to follow tests from anywhere in the world. Other plans include a new facility, on the same site, for testing flow rates of up to 3500 litres per second. UK government funding will help towards its construction.
SPP Pumps is a subsidiary of Kirloskar Brothers Ltd.