A century-old valve installation from Glenfield continues to operate flawlessly.

Since 1914, much has changed in the world. However, some things remain constant, such as a Glenfield valve installation at a treatment plant in Chennai, India, which continues to operate flawlessly. 03-07-2024

The valve in question is a Glenfield 26” gate valve, and it is still working perfectly after more than a century of service. The valve is installed in the common header of the Kilpauk water treatment plant in Chennai and has been in continuous operation.

Introducing water treatment in the area

The Kilpauk water treatment plant, where Chennaites (people living in Chennai) first got the taste of treated water, is set to enter its 110th year of existence this year.

The 66 acre plant was built by engineer JW Madley, the man behind the project, has all the remnants of the British era and most of the machinery is considered an engineering marvel. The regulated water supply system to Chennai City was established in 1872 on commissioning of the scheme formulated by British engineer James Fraser.

To be able to tap the water from the Korataliar River, a six feet high dam was built across the river at Tamaraipakkam, about 27 km from the city. The surplus water flowing in the Korataliar got diverted into a nearby lake, the Cholavaram. From there, water was diverted to Red Hills Lake through a 4 km lower supply channel. The proposal of James Fraser confirmed that the Red Hills Lake would remain as the terminal storage point of water drawn from Korataliar River.

A safe solution was needed

The plant’s construction became a necessity after the open canal that was previously supplying water from Red Hills to Kilpauk shaft got polluted, which resulted in water-borne diseases.
JW Madley developed 14 slow sand filters which are still part of the plant today. This approach followed the principle that bacteria will eat bacteria, and it is said that water through this process has a 99.9% purity.

In 1927, Chennai got chlorinated water after JW Madley introduced it. In 1954, it was shifted to a rapid gravity filtration system. After 1954, several schemes for improvements and expansion of the system had been implemented and commissioned.

Despite the many improvements of the plant, the original Glenfield gate valve is still in place and working perfectly.
The plant currently provides 270 million litres each day to Chennai.

Expect quality in everything we do

The remarkable fact that one of our valves has lasted for over a century is a testament to our commitment to quality. It is proof that our products are built to last and that our customers can rely on them to perform year after year, decade after decade.

In the AVK Group, we are honoured to have played a small part in the success of the Kilpauk Water Treatment Plant and to have contributed to the well-being of the people of Chennai. We are proud to have demonstrated the value of investing in quality and reliability, even in an age where planned replacements have become the norm.

Our team of engineers and technicians work tirelessly to design and manufacture products that meet the highest standards of quality and durability. We remain committed to delivering the best possible products to our customers and to maintaining our reputation for quality and reliability. Thank you to the team at the Kilpauk Water Treatment Plant for their trust in our products, and we look forward to serving them and other customers for many years to come.

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