Treatment processes in the water and wastewater field are evolving. The demand for innovative solutions is rising, therefore there are now more carbon efficient innovative technologies available on the market. These offer improved treatability of water and wastewater. However, while the advanced technologies aim to reduce the cost of operations, they often require higher Capex than conventional processes and have limited operational data or case studies. A full-scale demonstration becomes necessary for any new technology to be successful across varied conditions, but the commercial viability makes it difficult to be tested at full scale. In such cases bench scale and pilot scale tests play an important role. A pilot scale project is a small-scale treatment setup designed to bridge the gap between laboratory bench scale and full scale. They are temporary units built to run feasibility studies for a specific period before the full-scale project is designed. This setup gives the best indication of the expected results from the selected technology. The feasibility studies are paramount to the success of a technology introduced at large scale plants. During pilot projects there is the opportunity to test and compare existing technologies to find out the optimum outcome. The pilot plants also allow you to carry out modifications to the conventional technologies to suit the needs of the treatment.
The industrial effluents are complex in nature. They contain micropollutants, oils & fats, heavy metals and microorganisms. In recent years there has been a high content of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) in the pharmaceutical industry’s wastewater effluent. The treatment of such effluents is becoming increasingly difficult. Undertaking a pilot scale study can make it easier to understand the line of treatment necessary for an effective outcome. It helps in determining the optimum design parameters. These studies also provide ample data to the industries to aid in their research as well as the design of future wastewater treatment plants (WwTP).
The importance of the pilot scale project may include but is not limited to:
- Operations under real environment conditions.
- To measure the effect of operating parameters and determining the optimum results.
- The maintenance requirements as well as operating costs.
- Physical conditions of the process can be replicated which might not be possible at bench scale (Hydraulic conditions).
At WEW Engineering Limited, we believe in advising our clients about the latest technological innovations. If necessary, pilot testing is undertaken with the technological innovators across Europe. It provides assurance to the client that the technology will result in expected outcomes. It estimates the operational costs (OPEX) as well as maintenance. This helps to develop the cost benefit analysis. As a specialist consultant in water and wastewater treatment we are not affiliated with any Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) or chemical suppliers which allows us to suggest the best technology provider without any bias.
Recent pilot plant projects carried out (and ongoing) by WEW:
- Food and Beverage
- Wastewater treatability
- Jar testing and bench scale wastewater treatment simulations
- Anaerobic degradability of effluents
- Advanced oxidation process (AOP)
The pilot tests managed by WEW engineering range across a variety of processes and industries. These allow the clients to understand the water and wastewater characteristics and to define a treatment philosophy. We believe in supporting our engineering designs with reliable data. The conclusions derived from these pilot studies will also help us provide refined treatment solutions to our future clients. In conclusion pilot projects provide reliable data for the feasibility of the chosen treatment and economic viability (CAPEX & OPEX estimates).