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100 metre water jet (Geyser) - Expo Liege 1939

100 metre water jet (Geyser) at the Exhibition Expo Liege 1939
© L'illustré

The pontoon was firmly moored in the middle of the Meuse, in line with the main entrance to Coronmeuse, from which a world-record 100-metre-high water jet shot out. This pontoon was ballasted and about 40 metres long. It had a draught of 1.60 metres. Its electromechanical equipment included a motor-pump unit with an hourly flow rate of 800 m3 at a pressure of 220 metres, the motor being three-phase with rings of 850 HP, 6,000 V, 50 periods, 1,480 rpm. The suction of this group could be done either directly in the Meuse, or in load under pressure of 50 meters provided by a second pump. By putting the two pumps in series, it was possible to obtain the pressure required to launch the main jet at a height of 105 metres in calm weather.

The second pump was capable of delivering 1,000 m3 per hour at 50 metres or 1,750 m3 at 40 metres. It was directly coupled to a 320 HP, 6,000 V, 50 period, 1,480 rpm three-phase slip ring motor. When the wind force did not allow the height of the jet to be increased to 100 metres, it was fed only by the pump of the first group sucking directly into the Meuse, in order to obtain a jet of approximately 80 metres.

In order to vary the aesthetic effects, it was possible to emulsify the jet by having a mixture of water and air sucked through the nozzle, which then functioned as an injector. The 850 HP pump could also be connected to a circular ring with eight 25 mm diameter nozzles, giving an overall basket effect. The 320 hp pump also powered the butt jets, the powerful corbel jets and four vertical candelabra jets up to 40 metres high. In high winds, this provided a variety of effects that compensated for the reduced height of the main jet.

In addition to the two main groups, a third group served in the main order a ramp of so-called "spray" jets surrounding the pontoon to hide the non-submerged part. This pump could also power ornamental jets corbelled into the longitudinal axis. Finally, a fourth pump-motor unit was used for draining leakage water.

The high-voltage electrical power was supplied to the pontoon by four submerged cables (one of which was a reserve) and the installation allowed for easy disconnection so that the pontoon could be moved in the shortest possible time when the water had to be completely free, for example for certain sporting events.

The light sets intended to ensure the lighting of the main jets were made up of sixty-four 800 millimetre diameter projectors with 3,000 W. 130 V. lamps, fifty-two of which lit the vertical jets and the other twelve the end fans. By means of an appropriate set of screens, the jets were illuminated in white or golden yellow.

Finally, to illuminate the spray jets, two hundred and thirty-eight 200 W lamps were mounted in a ledge surrounding the upper part of the pontoon.

It is easy to see that the heat generated by all these light sources required a permanent renewal of the pontoon's atmosphere. A special ventilation system was provided for this purpose.

© General Report - International Water Technology Exhibition - Liège 1939