Drinking water is scarce in the Atacama region of Chile. In response to this challenge, WEG has partnered with a Chilean sanitation company to provide electric motors and soft starters at a desalination plant - a facility that will continuously supply quality drinking water to over 200,000 people.
Developed by Empresa Concesionaria de Servicios Sanitarios S.A (ECONSSA), the project aims to solve the water shortage in the Atacama region. WEG’s involvement is part of its strategy to supply motor solutions to key market segments, specifically to the water industry.
To ensure that water reaches the different supply points for the population, WEG supplied W50 electric motors to be used in the four lifting plants, or pumping stations, which pump the drinking water from the desalination plant to Piedra Colgada - a distance of more than 60km between them.
These W50 motors were built for the most extreme operating conditions, including marine and salty environments. Their mechanical design not only optimises features such as weight and length, but also durability and ease of product maintenance.
In addition to the electric motors for the lifting plants, WEG has also supplied W22 motors to the desalination plant. The IE3 efficiency level of these motors offer energy savings and higher productivity, with an cost-benefit ratio.
All electric motors for this project were manufactured with a special epoxy paint plan suitable for severe marine and salty environments. They also had medium voltage panels and soft starters from the SSW7000 line, which are intended to feed the high-pressure pumps. This is one of the most critical and higher electricity-demanding processes on a desalination plant.
The desalination plant will be located in Punta Zorro sector, municipality of Caldera, and from there, seawater will be desalinated and pumped to the different consumption points for the population of Chañaral, Caldera, Copiapó and Tierra Amarilla, who are currently getting water from Copiapó river.
For WEG, this project is an important example of its work in the water supply industry, and particularly for desalination plants. The company had the expertise to offer quality and efficient solutions, providing the customer with reliability and major energy savings.