The Gibbons maintenance team was recently on hand at Colchester Zoo to remove a pump from the sea lion enclosure as it was due for its annual inspection and refurbishment.
The Sea Lion enclosure is home to the Zoo’s Patagonian Sea Lions and holds a whopping 500,000 gallons of water. The Sea Lion enclosure named Playa Patagonia is the longest straight underwater tunnel in Europe at 24 meters long, with 10cm thick glass inside the tunnel.
The Gibbons engineers took up the challenge of removing the 55Kw pump so it could be assessed at the Gibbons workshop. Upon arrival, the engineers were met by Colchester Zoo’s Estate Team engineer, who granted access to the plant room. Once inside, the team got to work by isolating the pump electrically and shutting off the water valves. Once the water valves had been shut off, the wet end fixing bolts were loosened off so the pump could be drained of any excess water.
After the pump had been drained the motor had to be unbolted and lifted out of the way using the lifting frame. The coupling was then removed and placed to one side so that the pump could also be lifted by the lifting frame and safely placed onto a pallet along with the motor. Both the pump and motor were then taken back to the Gibbons workshop for inspection.
A replacement pump and motor were then lifted back into position and bolted down with the coupling fitted to both shafts. The motor was then laser aligned to make sure that the new equipment worked to its highest efficiency. The engineers then ran some tests to ensure the process ran smoothly and check for any possible leaks.
Back at the workshop
The pump and motor were delivered to the workshop engineers at Gibbons who carried out a full refurbishment of both, including new seals and bearings. Tests were carried out to make sure the equipment ran smoothly, ready for use back at the Sea Lion enclosure.
Main image by Jakub Pabis: https://www.pexels.com/photo/a-sea-lion-swimming-in-the-water-13277585/