Rainwater harvesting solutions
Rainsurfer Limited are a Dublin based company who design and manufacture innovative and sustainable rainwater harvesting solutions. Their current Prototype the HiRiser® is an independently powered pumping unit designed to collect rainwater through domestic roof/gutter systems and pump it from ground level to a storage tank at a higher elevation for domestic re-use.
Refining the Rainsurfer Pump Prototype
The original prototype’s design utilised a coil of pipe connected to a plastic circular disk to form a spiral wheel which was used to pump the water, this was a component that Rainsurfer Limited felt could be improved significantly.
Once again, Rainsurfer Limited engaged with the PEM Technology Gateway at IT Sligo, this time to assist in designing and manufacturing a fully functional spiral component to replace the initial rudimentary design. This included initial concept designs, final 3D CAD models, DFM (Design for Manufacture) considerations, manufacturing advice/consultation with a suitable manufacturer for the next generation spiral wheel and project management of the manufacturing process for the final product.
The Rainsurfer Limited & PEM Technology Gateway partnership
The PEM Technology Gateway’s R&D Engineer designed a brand-new spiral wheel based on a cost-effective manufacturing technique (vacuum forming). Given their manufacturing expertise, The PEM Technology Gateway PI was also the main point of contact with the manufacturing company on behalf of Rainsurfer Limited and oversaw the entire manufacturing process of the next generation prototype of the spiral component. This was the second Enterprise Ireland Innovation Voucher collaboration between Rainsurfer Limited and the PEM Technology Gateway/IT Sligo – both parties’ are currently in discussions on how to progress with the next phase of this project.
“Moving from a proof-of-concept prototype to a manufacturing prototype is always a big challenge for any company. To manufacture one of the main components on our HiRiser® system we knew we would need 3D CAD drawings/Models plus knowledge of mould-making and vacuum-forming; skills and knowledge we definitely didn’t have! PEM Gateway / Sligo IT were able to outline all the steps required and produced CAD drawings of our prototype which they then used to manufacture our first vacuum-formed components. They were definitely a great help to us, especially as they acted as a single point of contact to consult with and guide us through all the stages in this critical process.”
Peter Ryan – MD Rainsurfer Ltd.
The Technology Gateway Network delivers innovation expertise to industry across Ireland. It is run by Enterprise Ireland in partnership with the Institutes of Technology.