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Water Level Management

Fish Friendly Projects - Tail Sluice

The sluice structure, built in 1950, is currently undergoing a major refurbishment. Part of the refurbishment works was to insure the structure complies with the new Elver and Eel pass regulations. This crucial regulation is in place to help stop and hopefully reverse the dwindling Eel and elver figures, currently showing stocks reduced an alarming 90% over the past decade. Aquatic Control Engineering Thetford Sluice.

LPDE is UV stable as are all of ACE’s HDPE products; it also has a good Impact strength and is extremely durable.

One issue faced by the sluice, due to the remote location, is that of vandalism. To overcome the problem ACE’s solution was to bury and hide the Elver pass. where possible. This was achieved using ACE’s unique, Elver friendly, spiral wound bristle, which can be installed into a standard service pipe. (The same bristle material used on the bristle boards)

In areas where burying the pass was not possible, ACE installed heavy duty mesh guards at 45° along any remaining prone elver pass. The guards are hinged to allow monitoring and maintenance to take place.

The original sluice design lacked any fish pass facility, but featured a canoe portage slope against the head - wall. Inspections carried out by the Environment Agency and ACE concluded that a fish pass could be incorporated into the portage, whilst retaining its original use. Birse Civils were awarded the reconditioning works package for this structure and looked to ACE to design and install a practical solution for this fish pass to also include eel passage. This would bring the whole structure in line with EU and Environment Agency requirements.

The special materials chosen by the Environment agency reflect the sensitive surroundings and ACE have supplied 100% recycled channel sections manufactured from Low Density Polyethylene (LPDE). A further unique aspect of the design is in allowing the bristle brush to be impregnated directly into the channel sections. This kept the CO2 footprint of the project to a minimum.

ACE’s unique system is the UK’s first modular HDPE fish pass, which features:

Significantly reduced installation times Each ACE modular section (which can include Elver passage) simply bolts down saving a vast amount of installation time,

Civil work reduction

The simplicity of this product dramatically reduces the required amount of civil work needed, which reduced the cost of the overall project for the Environment Agency.

Reduction in Theft and Carbon Footprint In addition to the large cost saving of using HDPE in place of Stainless steel the ACE HDPE system significantly reduces the theft potential as HDPE has little or no scrap value. HDPE has a much lower material carbon footprint than a Stainless steel equivalent.

Effective Fish and Eel Passage Let’s not forget that this design, alongside our many other solutions has allowed the safe and continuous fish and eel passage to all our underwater friends!


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