SKF solutions help London’s Lee Tunnel redirect millions of gallons of water every hour

2014 June 19, 09:00 CEST

Gothenburg, Sweden, 19 June, 2014: SKF is supplying a range of bearings to GIW Industries for inclusion in their 54-tonne pumps, which will help protect London’s growing population from sewage overflow from the River Thames in the coming years.  The pumps are the largest wastewater pumps ever made and will be used to redirect as much as 2.9 million gallons of water per hour into the Lee Tunnel to protect London’s 150-year-old Victorian sewer network, which can no longer accommodate the volume of sewage and rainwater. 

“The SKF bearing solution is designed to address critical performance demands in an exceptionally high profile installation, demonstrating once again our ability to provide solutions for the toughest applications,” said Rakesh Makhija, SKF President Industrial Market Strategic Industries.

These pumps will be essential to help prevent 39 million tons of sewage and storm water from overflowing into the River Thames every year.  The pumps not only need to be able to process major flows of wastewater, but also must be capable of withstanding the contamination and wear of foreign bodies contained in the sewage. 

“Our experience with the quality of SKF bearings and the technical support provided by SKF engineers has been outstanding. Given the importance of this project and the demand for long term reliability, with pumps mounted 80 meters underground, GIW specified that only SKF bearings should be used,” said Robert Visintainer, VP Engineering for GIW.

The SKF bearings provide heavy duty, high quality components for the pumps to handle the demanding loads and reliability requirements of the application. These pumps are mounted in a remote location 80 meters below ground, but the SKF bearings minimize the likelihood of expensive downtime.

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SKF is a leading global supplier of bearings, seals, mechatronics, lubrication systems, and services which include technical support, maintenance and reliability services, engineering consulting and training. SKF is represented in more than 130 countries and has around 15,000 distributor locations worldwide. Annual sales in 2013 were SEK 63,597 million and the number of employees was 48,401.

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