An increasing number of drinking water supply companies are recognising carbon dioxide (CO₂) as the optimal alternative to strong acids in the softening process at purification plants.
Drinking water company Oasen has made the switch and chose multidisciplinary specialist GMB and electrical systems integrator Alewijnse to devise a conversion plan. This involved the installation of CO₂ tanks and mixing/dosing equipment, ensuring uninterrupted production. The renovated reactors are now successfully operating at the De Steeg and De Laak purification plants.
CO₂ as the clear choice
CO₂ has emerged as a robust substitute for powerful chemicals such as sulfuric and hydrochloric acid that are widely used in the post-softening process in the production of drinking water. It reduces the vulnerability of drinking water to pH fluctuations, is easier to handle, more economical, and has less impact on the environment.
Oasen, the drinking water company that supplies the Groene Hart region in the Netherlands, collaborated closely with GMB and Alewijnse at the De Laak purification plant in Lexmond and the De Steeg plant in Langerak to upgrade the existing hydrogen chloride (HCl) installations for dosing strip water required for the production of lime milk. All HCl dosages after the reactors were successfully replaced with CO₂ dosages.
For the conversion of the installations, GMB chose Alewijnse due to their extensive experience in renewing electrical installations and expertise in production processes. Together with Oasen, they designed a conversion plan that aimed to minimize disruption to the production process.
"Producing good quality drinking water is Oasen's highest priority, as it’s ensuring an uninterrupted supply at all times," says Ruud Reuling, Technical Project Manager at Alewijnse. "Thanks to our knowledge of Oasen's standards, software, processes, and our experience in renovations, the conversions could take place with virtually no loss of production. The result is optimal system and installation performance, enabling Oasen to better ensure water quality and reducing the maintenance requirements.
"We created a hardware design for the layout of the distribution boards and new control panels, as well as modifications to existing control cabinets. We also supplied and installed all the new control panels, including the cabling. Additionally, we coordinated the work of our other subcontractors, such as Consilium for CO₂ detection. At De Steeg, we also adapted the control software."
Oasen is immense satisfied with the final results of both projects, which have reduced hydrochloric acid consumption by 90% through the use of more sustainable carbon dioxide
Sjoerd Jansen, Project Manager at Oasen
Oasen, GMB and Alewijnse have been collaborating for many years on maintenance and other projects. Alewijnse delivers innovative solutions for electrical installations and automation at purification and pumping stations, while GMB serves as the main contractor for mechanical, civil and structural expertise.
In their partnership with Alewijnse and GMB, Oasen has the optimal team for the innovative management of their electrical systems and installations, enabling the water company to provide customers with reliable, affordable, and, above all, sustainable drinking water. In this way, Oasen, GMB, and Alewijnse contribute to the development of the future of drinking water purification.