Newman Power Plant Evaporation Pond Liner Replacement and Bisection from Parkhill, Smith & Cooper on Vimeo.

After observing some problems with the evaporative pond liner, El Paso Electric (EPE) hired PSC to perform an evaluation of the evaporation pond at the Newman Power Station. Over 40 years, the liner had begun to deteriorate and needed replacement as well as sediment removal which had reduced capacity. Upon completion of the report, PSC designed the 45-acre pond, which will be divided into 2 operational ponds with an 11-foot concrete wall. This will allow continual operation of the pond if either side needs to be taken offline. A 60-mil high-density polyethylene leak detection liner will be installed to replace the original 10 mil PVC liner.

The project will be completed in 2 phases, west and east pond. Both phases involve removing the old liner and a foot of sediment that had collected on the bottom of the pond. The sediment removal process involved pushing sediment into rows and piles where the plastic liner could be separated and disposed of properly. This process was completed in about 1 month. Upon completion, excavation will lower the pond bottom about 2 feet from its prior elevation and excavate a footing for the dividing wall which will span 870 feet across the pond.

This project also involves rerouting and combining 6 pipes of effluent entering the pond at one location at each pond.  The combining of the effluent piping will provide one central location for effluent and pond management, giving EPE flexibility. The exit pipes will provide metering for the site and will run over 1000 feet to irrigation piping. The metering and controls will be centrally located to provide ease of management and valve operation for irrigation. Irrigation pumping will be managed through electronic water depth gage, flow meters and variable frequency pumps.

Nick Ybarra, PE, previous project manager, said, “Mark Hoffman with El Paso Electric told us is that this is the largest project that El Paso Electric has ever done that isn’t involving any electrical distribution or electrical generation that El Paso Electric has done in their entirety.”