Undersized wastewater plants can disrupt the overall facility process and often force production limitations, which can reduce profits. Under-sizing issues can be identified through expansion audits, the need for a reduction in operational costs or by experiencing shutdowns due to plant capacity issues.
If it has been determined your wastewater treatment plant cannot properly handle the current or projected increased influent, what’s next? Should you begin the process of redesigning your plant? Before you invest in a major capital-intensive undertaking, Operators Unlimited recommends conducting a wastewater specific site survey to pinpoint the exact issues and identify solutions on a granular level that may not only save capital dollars, but also time regarding solution implementation.
Two Common Wastewater Plant Undersize Scenarios
Total Cost Reduction
Total cost reduction is an ongoing process for facility management. Reducing operational costs by decreasing wastewater plant daily operational hours seems like an easy to implement solution, only to discover your (GPM) gallons per minute limitations prevent you from reducing wastewater plant shifts.
Adding a Process Line
As product demand increases so does the need for additional process line(s) within your facility. With this addition comes the need to increase and maximize daily flow rates for your wastewater plant. Can my facility handle this increase? Does my permit allow for an increase in daily discharge?
How Site Surveys Work
Identify the Bottleneck(s)
The Operators Unlimited team works with your Wastewater Supervisor, EHS Specialist and Plant Engineer to understand your wastewater goals and specific needs. Next, we walk through your entire system and begin to identify the bottlenecks. Where are you experiencing a backup? Is there a specific area in which you are losing efficiency and increasing instability? Two common areas wastewater plants experience bottlenecks are storage capability and sludge handling capacity.
Investigate all Options and Implement Solutions
Once bottlenecks have been identified, solutions can be developed that often involve low-cost equipment improvements with capacity increasing results. A previous Operators Unlimited client needed to reduce their wastewater plant shifts to one, 8-hour shift daily. Unfortunately, they were only able to process half of the daily influent during this timeframe. A plant audit confirmed the system could efficiently process an increased amount of flow during a given period if a small change was made in the pumping configuration in one area of the facility. After this modification, the change to one 8-hour shift could be implemented.
It is critical to take into consideration all factors and potential outcomes when determining operation size adjustments, which is where Operators Unlimited has experience and seen much success for clients.
How Operators Unlimited Can Help?
The experienced, knowledgeable team of Operators Unlimited lives wastewater on a daily basis. Our goal is to improve the efficiency and compliance of our clients. We understand your system and begin to analyze your treatment process immediately. We are the wastewater partner your plant needs. Contact Operators Unlimited if you are experiencing under sizing issues or if you are planning a facility expansion and need to better understand the impacts on your wastewater treatment plant.