Drain Protection System

In early 2013 a major UK spillcare company contacted P&E Systems and asked us to redesign their automatic drain protection system.  Their current unit was not very user friendly and was based on hardwired logic and a PCB which did not allow for any site specific features to be incorporated.

The system incorporates a heavy duty inflatable bladder suspended over the roof of a drain. The control panel houses a compressor which fills the bladder with air, expanding within the drain to create a water tight seal.  The unit activates to prevent potential contaminated product being discharged into the environment, companies are at risk of substantial fines and prosecution for environmental breaches.    

The challenge for our electrical and software team was to design a compact, weather proof panel which was cost effect, flexible and would allow integration into other intelligent systems (something which the existing system did not).  It also needed to be functional during an emergency situation, for example in the event of a fire, excess water used by a sprinkler system or the emergency services could cause overflow into “clean” drains and the power may be switched off for safety reasons.  The system needed to have in built battery back up.

The resulting system uses a Siemens Logo unit and screen to offer full automatic control.  The system can be activated by hardwired electrical connections from a site fire protection panel, the operator can activate from the panel or remotely via mobile phone.  The clients have the option of adding a 4G modem which allow remote control and monitoring.  Several units on the same site can be connected together either intelligently or hardwired.

Since the initial experimental unit was developed, we have supplied over 120 units which are now installed all over the UK and Europe.  In Holland, 40 units are currently protecting the new headquarters of an internationally recognised software company.


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