Systems integrator Alewijnse has successfully completed the upgrade of the complete control system on board the unique floating sand processing installation Kaliwaal 41. During the annual winter break, owner Van Nieuwpoort Groep installed new conveyor belts, electric motors and a submersible dredge pump to increase the efficiency of the sand production. Alewijnse was contracted for the upgrades to the automation applications and electrical installations.
Kaliwaal 41 is a unique floating pontoon equipped with an industrial installation that is fed with material extracted from the riverbed, separates the sand from the gravel, and then uses vertical flow separation tanks to deliver up to 150 different grades of sand for use in concrete applications. It is one of just a few floating separation installations in the Netherlands and is currently playing an important role in the Dutch Maaspark Well River widening project, which aims to create a safer living environment in the Maas valley between Well and Aijen.
During the winter break last January, the capabilities of the Kaliwaal 41 were upgraded to enable it to carry out the extraction, grading and delivery of sand and gravel in an even more productive and efficient way. Van Nieuwpoort Group installed additional conveyor belts, motors and pull cord protectors to significantly increase production rates by making it possible to switch between two ships during front loading without stopping the production process. This has resulted in significant time and cost savings.
Richard Pols, commissioning engineer at Alewijnse, gives an insight into the advanced process technology: “The installation dredges sand and gravel, which are separated at the beginning of the process. The next step is the transfer of the gravel to a vessel alongside. With the installation of two new conveyor belts, the gravel can be loaded to an additional vessel on the other side of the pontoon as soon as the hold of the first vessel is filled. The system automatically switches between the conveyors without stopping the process.
Automation and electrical installation
Van Nieuwpoort Group contracted system integrator Alewijnse for the upgrades required to the automation and electrical installations serving the control systems. Pols: ” We installed new hardware, adapted the wiring and updated the PLC program and SCADA to match the requirements of the new equipment. It was a nice job, successfully completed and commissioned on time.”
Additional works included the expansion of the main switch board with an 800A power supply and the installation of a power cable for the new sand pump on the rear side of the production pontoon. “This pump dredges the finer sand fractions which are surplus to requirements and discharged through a conduit aft of the pontoon,” explains Richard.
Alewijnse and Van Nieuwpoort Group have been working together successfully for many years, ever since the original construction in 1998. “We have an excellent working relationship, in which we complement each other perfectly with our own areas of expertise,” says Richard. “Van Nieuwpoort comes to us with an idea and we take it and develop it into a professional electrical design and then install and commission it. In particular, our reliability and open and honest communication is highly appreciated.”
Michel van Komen, production and implementation coordinator at Van Nieuwpoort Bouwgrondstoffen, agrees: “This dialogue ensures that we can control our production process even more efficiently. The project was completed in cooperation with Alewijnse to our complete satisfaction.”
“We were very pleased to have successfully completed another project for the Kaliwaal 41,” says Alewijnse project manager Jean-Pierre Gerrits. “The new system we delivered last year is very innovative and equipped with many features for the visualisation and monitoring of downtime and maintenance planning. The recent enhancement of this control system has enabled us to optimize the production process of the Kaliwaal 41 even more.
“The cooperation with the client throughout the project was excellent as well. Together we were able to complete the project quickly, efficiently and satisfactorily. We hope to bring the same expertise in electrical engineering and automation to further collaborations on future projects”.