Innovative Cover Design for Inlet Tanks

27.06.2006

Meeting the very specific and technically challenging requirements for new tank access covers at the Tonbridge Wastewater Treatment site (WwTw), is another example of the engineering skills of Bristol based specialist GRP cover designers AMi Designs.

Following the addition of the new Tonbridge inlet works AMi Designs were chosen to design, manufacture and install GRP covers for the inlet tanks and Magnaflow chamber. Tonbridge WwTw required the tank to be visually accessible by a series of hatches strategically placed across the length and breadth of the tank cover, without sacrificing aesthetics, strength or durability. They also required the covers to be easily removable to allow full, uninterrupted access to the tank by their onsite staff, without the need for an additional installation team.

AMi proposed flush fitting hatches with the same herringbone design texture relief pattern (similar to a durbar pattern) to ensure a match with the existing tank cover. To ensure a lightweight, yet strong and durable solution the safety hatches incorporated a stainless steel grill beneath the hatch lid. This meant that the required structural support, loading (5.0kN/m2) and deflection criteria (1/200 of beam span), were all met, whilst enabling the removable part of the cover to be easy and light to handle.

To allow the large GRP cover to be fully removable, AMi Designs adopted a technique which did not necessitate the traditional overlapping panel design to be implemented. This was achieved by placing the locating sockets in the secured supporting beams, making the interlocking flanges on the panels self-aligning and with the aid of simple handles, each panel remained vertically accessible and removable. The cover panels are secured by steel quarter turn locks that fix onto locking clamps mounted on the inside wall of the tank at either end of each panel.

The complete hatch assembly is fitted with stainless steel hatch stays and a flush finger lift and pad lock security system.

AMi Director and qualified engineer Darren Bishop who lead the 3 man team for the Tonbridge project commented, “This project was successfully completed thanks to our specialist design skills in GRP cover design, as illustrated by our innovative design solution which met the strength, durability and aesthetic requirements of the existing tanks”.

AMi Designs was established by Directors Kevin Daykin and Darren Bishop, who are both qualified structural engineers. Thanks to a range of successfully completed projects, AMi is enhancing its reputation in the design, manufacture and installation of innovative GRP cover designs.

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