Customer: AGRA Road
Products: VAG Plunger Valves, VAG Butterfly Valves, VAG Gate Valves
In 1978, 21 VAG valves were sent to Mumbai. Today, they are still proving just how reliable they are. Mumbai, formerly Bombay, is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. More than 20 million people live in the subcontinent's main seaport. More than half of the people live on Salsette Island, a peninsula off the marshy west coast that extends into the Arabian Sea.
The proximity of the ocean makes the groundwater brackish and salty. Only a few households are connected to the sewer. Floods during the four-month monsoons frequently bring the sewage system to its knees and drinking water is mixed with wastewater. Providing drinking water for this metropolis is a Herculean task that gets bigger as the city continues to grow. Because it was impossible to build wells for drinking water, the city had been looking for alternatives for years.
Towards the end of the 18th century, the first in a series of dams was built in the Deccan Mountains, in part under British rule. Over the years, the four reservoirs Tansa, Lower Vaitarna, Upper Vaitarna and Bhatsa were built. Four pipelines with a length of 38 km and a diameter of 3 metres feed 35 million litres of water a day into the city's supply system.
One of the major sources of water is Bhatsa River, which is some 75 km outside of the city of Mumbai. The water let out from the river is boosted at the pump house, which was built by Municipal Corporation at Pise, by 26 vertical turbine pumps and transferred to the Panjrapur water treatment plant for treatment. The remaining 700 million litres of raw water are injected into gravity water mains at Agra Road. In order to match the injection pressure to that of the gravity mains, the pressure is controlled by 7 Plunger Valves, 7 Butterfly Valves and 7 Gate Valves in PN 1200. A total of 21 VAG Valves are installed at Agra Road.
This important difference in pressure requires the valves to be operated at least once a day. For the last 30 years, the valves have operated uninterruptedly without any problems.
In the spring of 2008, VAG’s Managing Director, Robert Fellner-Feldegg, visited Municipal Corporation Mumbai. It was spontaneously decided to visit the pumping station some 30 km outside of Mumbai to check up on the heavy jubilarians. Pramod Mahadeo Guhe, the Dy. Hydraulic Engineer, was very happy to show VAG his installation. 'I am so thrilled!' exclaims Mr Guhe, 'look at "your" valves! All of them have been working every day for over a quarter of a century, and none of them show any signs of ageing!'
'What's more, these giants are perfectly integrated. A small village has grown around the pumping station. The operation of the valves secured two jobs. Families followed. And today, thirty years later, there's a village with 50 inhabitants.' Mr Guhe reports enthusiastically, wanting to show the German visitor much, much more. But time is pressing and the group has to head back to the Municipal Corporation’s headquarters, where a meeting has been scheduled to discuss extending the supply system with new valves.