Grand Canyon National Park Water Pumping and System Optimization U.S. National Park Service, Arizona

Lincus was requested by Arizona Public Service Company (the largest investor owned electric utility in Arizona) to develop a water supply, distribution and optimization study for the U.S. National Park Service’s Grand Canyon facilities. The goal of this study was to optimize the Parks’ existing pumping and water storage system operations.

The existing water pumping and storage system consists of about 13 million gallons of storage, two-600 hp and one-800 hp booster pumps with daily peak water consumption at the South Rim of about 500,000 gallons per day. Water is pumped into the tanks at the South Rim tank farm during off peak hours from 9:00pm – 11:00am during weekdays and 24 hours during weekends. A minimum amount of water is currently being maintained in the tanks at all times for fire safety.

Working with the National Park Personnel, Lincus developed an optimization plan based on maintaining a minimum amount of water at South Rim for fire safety, ensuring that existing system will be able to keep up with rising demand for water, and also including cost effective energy efficiency measures.

The study indicated the following highly cost effective recommendations:

1. Improve operational efficiencies of pumps

2. Increase existing storage capacity to increase cost and operational efficiency via extra storage and better variable speed drive controls

3. Install 150 kW of hydraulic recovery turbine generator and convert water supply system into a closed system

4. Establish additional variable speed pump control strategies during months with water demand by adding more storage to optimize pump and VFD operation.

In total, Lincus recommendation resulted in about 1.4 million kWh of energy and 205 kW of demand savings that finally would result in more than $100,000 of savings. With significant utility incentives the simple payback for the U.S. National Park is less than eight years.