Growth can often be a double-edged sword for a water reclamation facility (WRF). With an expansion looming to double the capacity of their membrane bioreactor (MBR) facility, the Coppermine WRF was exploring ways to improve their phosphorus removal from wastewater. Phosphorus removal is critical to protecting the sensitive waters of the Chattahoochee River, for which their receiving stream is a tributary.

WaterFX has several advantages over traditional phosphorus removal coagulants

Prior to evaluating WaterFX, Coppermine had used high doses of strongly acidic ferric chloride. While the ferric was able to achieve the 0.13 mg/L total phosphorus (TP) limit, it also produced high volumes of chemical sludge and required a hefty caustic dose to restore alkalinity and raise the pH of the effluent. These factors complicate operations, raise handling safety concerns, potentially impact toxicity, and increase costs for chemicals and as well as sludge processing and disposal.

After evaluating WaterFX, Coppermine found that their sludge volume was dramatically reduced, which directly reduced their processing and disposal costs. Polymer usage was reduced as well as centrifuge run time, all while increasing the final sludge cake solids percentage. 

Better pH and phosphorus level control

Because WaterFX is much less acidic, the operators were able to reduce and usually eliminate the caustic feed, for additional chemical cost savings and simplified operations. Their level of control over the phosphorus reduction process was also increased due to unique lanthanide-based chemistry of WaterFX. WaterFX reacts strongly and preferentially with phosphorus in a near 1:1 ratio, allowing the operators to monitor the influent flow and influent phosphorus concentration and to fine tune the feed to match the actual demand with only minor adjustments.

Less membrane fouling reduces hazardous chemical handling even further

An added benefit was that WaterFX caused much less fouling on the MBR membranes compared to the ferric chloride. This allowed the WRF to stop using oxalic acid to restore the membrane permeability. Instead, a much safer sodium hypochlorite solution is now used to restore the membranes to almost new permeability.

Protecting the river, simplifying operations, enhancing safety, and saving money – a 4X win!

With WaterFX, Coppermine can bring their expansion on-line knowing they are not only meeting the water reclamation needs of their community with a safer, more cost-effective process but that they can also reliably and efficiently protect the water quality of the Chattahoochee River. 

You can get all the details here.

Then contact us to find out if WaterFX can help you meet your phosphorus goals, protect your operators and your community, and save money in the process.