Energy Archives - Infrastructure Digest

Trenchless Technologies Used for Unusual Rehab Project

“Cast iron is a really good material; however, leaking cast iron joints are very common because the jutes dry out over time,” Ragula says. “The issue with this [particular]pipe was with the joint leak and those joints were every 12 ft.
“The main had been leaking for a while but the local distribution team really didn’t know how to handle it because there was a drip pot on it, as well as a three-way tee, both of which were located within the railroad right of way,” Ragula says.

PSEG wanted a solution that was the least invasive to the area and in dealing with the railroad company. “Normally, we would have excavated over the tee and cut the 4-in. diameter cast-iron leg off but that was impossible to do without lengthy and costly railroad permits, engineered drawings, inspectors, etc.,” Ragula says. “It also contained a drip pot on the 6-in. side within the railroad right of way that needed to be bridged.”

Why should you read this? Good detail about an excellent CIPP project in a tricky situation. Trenchless Technology, November 2014

Reduce, reuse, recycle: Turning wastewater into energy

“The False Creek Energy Centre in Vancouver, B.C., is the first application of localized sewer heat recovery in North America — and the only one to use untreated sewage. For about two years, the plant has provided hot water and heating for the Neighborhood Energy Utility (NEU) in Vancouver, a city of about 650,000.

The $30 million False Creek Energy Centre services a portion of the city seeing significant new building development — about 2.7 million square feet, which is expected to grow to about 7 million square feet.

The plant supplies 100 percent of the heating and hot water demand — 70 percent from sewage heat recovery and 30 percent from natural gas boilers, according to Chris Baber, Vancouver’s NEU manager.”

Why should you read this? It’s a successful, locally popular biomass facility, and a wastewater treatment plant. Fascinating. TPO, January 2013

India Blackout Affects 600 Million People

“Electricity for nine states in the northern grid, supporting about 370 million people, went off at 2:00 a.m. on July 30 and returned within 11 to 18 hours. Northeast India lost power at 1:00 p.m. on July 31. Ten hours later, power had not been restored in some places in north India. In all, the outages have affected some 600 million people in 19 of India’s 28 states.

A combination of drought, unmined coal resources and a lack of grid controls likely led to the collapse, experts say. The northern grid, the country’s largest, is not matching up with demand. Hydropower has suffered this year because of a lack of monsoons, and thermal powerplants are suffering because of low coal supplies. Thermal plants supply 65% of power in the country.” Details on the huge Indian blackout, from a credible source. ENR, July 31st, 2012

HDD Gains Traction with Electric Utilities

“Water utilities, sewer systems and telecommunications companies are always looking to improve infrastructure, frequently implementing HDD services. Just the same, electric companies also need to expand their outreach. For various reasons, installations or extensions of high voltage transmission lines are often required to be placed underground, rather than above-ground. Directional drilling offers electric companies that option.” A look at use of HDD by electrical utilities, including case study of HDD in downtown Savannah. Trenchless Technology, June 8th, 2012

Destroying Precious Land for Gas

“Natural gas has been sold as clean energy. But when the gas comes from fracturing bedrock with about five million gallons of toxic water per well, the word “clean” takes on a disturbingly Orwellian tone.” Opinion piece against fracking by Sean Lennon. Yes, that Sean Lennon. NYT, August 27, 2012

A Natural Solution

“It wasn’t until January 2008 when the Marcellus Shale potential became really interesting to gas explorers. Professor of Geosciences Terry Engelder at Penn State University and Professor of Geosciences Gary Lash at State University College, Fredonia, N.Y., published a paper contradicting the USGS lowball estimate and predicting that the Marcellus could produce 500 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.” Brief overview of the inordinate need for water in fracking, and of the possible use of acid mine drainage (AMD). This really seems to me like a classic confrontation between an immovable object (the need to keep groundwater clean) and an irresistible force (the desire for cheap domestic energy). We’ll see what happens, I guess. Energy & Infrastructure 

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