Detecting Leaks and Removing Oil

New patent behind Abanaki Belt Oil Skimmer helps protect Catskill Mountain hydroelectric site

The Blenheim-Gilboa Pumped Storage Power Project, which operates at the Mine Kill State Park in New York’s Catskill Mountains, relies on Abanaki’s Oil Grabber Model MB belt oil skimmer to detect leaks and remove oil from water sumps.

Upon demand, the Power Project can generate hydroelectric power quickly—up to 1,040,000 kw within just two minutes. Water is discharged into a lower reservoir adjacent to the 650-acre state park that was built by the New York Power Authority and is run by the Saratoga-Capital Region of the State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation.

The Project’s pumped storage is a closed cycle, with the same water used again and again. During periods of low power demand, the water is pumped back into the upper reservoir. No fossil or nuclear fuels are used, eliminating their related environmental considerations.

Because the power generation process uses large hydraulic systems to control water flow, it is conceivable that a failure in the hydraulic circuit could cause a hydraulic oil leak, which would result in an accumulation of hydraulic oil and water in a sump at the lower elevation of the plant. The Abanaki Oil Grabber Model MB provides a reliable and effective means for detecting the leak and removing oil from the water sumps.

The belt oil skimmer is mounted above the sump at a location that is frequented by operating personnel. If oil is present, it adheres to the belt in the sump and is removed from the belt at the higher elevation were it is observed. The source of the leaked oil is then located and repaired. The collected oil is removed for disposal, and clean water is discharged into the lower reservoir.

Recently, the U.S. Department of the Interior honored the New York Power Authority with its highest outdoor recreation award for the varied conservational, recreational, and cultural facilities developed by the Authority as part of the Blenhiem-Gilboa Power Project.

Abanaki Corporation is proud to count the Blenhiem-Gilboa Pumped Storage Power Project among its customers. Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Abanaki is the world leader in belt oil skimmer solutions for virtually any application. For more than 30 years, the company has served a global customer base in industries as diverse as iron and steel, wastewater, paper, food processing, automotive, environmental remediation, and recycling.

Published by Abanaki Corporation; Oil Skimmer Division