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Water & wastewater monitoring & analysis • Utility security & incident management • Biosolids & recycling Wastewater treatment & technology • Catchment management • Delivering resilience

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A clear vision for the future

In terms of acuity, 20/20 vision refers to the distance at which you can see an object and the clarity with which you can see it. And it was just that, clarity of vision, Ofwat was seeking five years ago when it first published its consultation document ‘Towards Water 2020’. It sought to define the current challenges facing the industry and to stimulate a groundbreaking conversation about solutions. Well, here we are, in 2020, and the challenges are very clear.

Editor Helen Compson

The call on our water supplies is growing exponentially, fuelled by population growth and ever-higher standards of living, while at the same time we have a largely ageing infrastructure that requires huge investment. The ethos within which we work, however, is framed by sustainability and the green revolution and the additional demands that entails. It is a tricky balance, but thankfully we can fish in a veritable reservoir of talent, as you’ll sharp see in this, our first issue of 2020. For starters, the Thames Water team struck gold at the recent British Construction Industry Awards after performing key-hole surgery in the heart of London. Neither train nor road-going vehicle was diverted during the £20m upgrade of a Victorian sewer, sandwiched between the junction of Baker Street and Marylebone Road above and the Hammersmith and City tube lines below. It was feat that earned them the Operations and Maintenance Project of the Year title. Scientists at Bath University’s Water Innovation and Research Centre, meanwhile, have been pushing the bounds in another arena.

Working in the vanguard of the drive to combat fast-moving viruses such as Ebola and Zika, they are monitoring the levels of pharmaceuticals reaching wastewater in a bid to help tackle the problem of drug resistance. Waste itself has been a focus for Anglian Water, which has achieved its highest yield of energy from ‘poo power’ to date. It is now generating enough energy from its combined heat and power plants to run a town the size of Lowestoft for a full year. Among Yorkshire Water’s many advances is a project that represents another step towards its commitment to be net zero carbon by 2030. It is ditching diesel in favour of electric vehicles during a trial at its Knostrop Energy and Recycling Centre, the largest wastewater treatment plant in Yorkshire. It is a final flourish for a centre that, thanks to a new £72m anaerobic digestion suite and on-site wind power, is self-sustaining much of the time. Needless to say, the investment by water companies generally is continuing apace. In another award-winning project, Thames Water carried out the £250m upgrade of Deephams sewage works in Enfield, judged the ‘Greatest Contribution to London’ at the latest ICE London Civil Engineering Awards. Welsh Water is preparing to replace 11km of old pipe in the Bodelwyddan, Kinmel Bay and Abergele areas, part and parcel of a £6.9m spend on improving the supply of drinking water across Conwy and Denbighshire. As with all that we do in this industry, innovation and sustainability were key to these multi-faceted projects.






22 12

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22-39 Water & wastewater monitoring & analysis 40-41 Utility security & incident management 48-51 Biosolids & recycling


52-58 Wastewater treatment & technology


60-61 Catchment management 62-65 Delivering resilience

52 60 Editor

Helen Compson


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Major £250m upgrade makes sewage works fit for the future

Work is now complete on an award-winning £250 million sewage treatment works upgrade designed to boost river quality, reduce odour and cater for predicted population growth. Due to the creative, sustainable and innovative thinking behind the project at Thames Water’s Deephams sewage works, Enfield, it was awarded the prestigious ‘Greatest Contribution to London’ award at the ICE London Civil Engineering Awards this summer. The upgrade to the works, which serves one million people, has also increased renewable energy generation on site from a new combined heat and power plant and reduced the carbon footprint of the works by a third. Martin Hoff, Thames Water’s head of major projects, said: “We’re all incredibly proud of the upgrade to Deephams. While many of the customers it serves may not have noticed anything while the work was taking place, it is going to make a big difference now and for the future. “As a result of our investment, the site is now more sustainable and ready for the future challenges of population growth and climate change.” Each day, Deephams deals with more than 200,000 tonnes of waste water, although this can rise to above one million tonnes during periods of heavy rain. During the three-year project there was no impact on service to Thames Water’s customers or treated effluent to the environment. The changes have seen the quality of treated water returned to the River Lea, a tributary of the Thames, significantly improved while there is also a 99 per cent reduction in odour emissions,

Thames Water’s Deephams sewage works, Enfield achieved by covering key parts of the works. Councillor Nesil Caliskan, leader of Enfield Council, said: “Thames Water’s investment in this incredibly important plant not only supports Enfield’s residents and businesses, but will continue to support the ongoing growth and future demand we expect to see in the borough. In addition, the significant modernisation to the infrastructure will, in short, improve the environment and quality of life for those living in the immediate catchment area. “I would also like to applaud the close cooperation of Thames Water and the



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Enfield Council (Development Management Team) throughout the planning of this key infrastructure improvement project. “It’s my desire that all Enfield residents have decent, well-connected places to live in and this investment of £250m by Thames Water will make a marked contribution to this aim.” An exceptional level of collaboration contributed towards delivering this complex technical project. It was delivered by Thames Water’s collaborative relationship with the AMK Joint Venture comprising of AECOM, J Murphy and Sons and Kier Infrastructure, on time and to budget.

If you would like to participate in the March edition of Water Industry Journal we shall be featuring: n Trenchless Technology applications & benefits

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Underground reservoir restored

Anglian Water engineers have concluded the inspection of an historic underground reservoir in the heart of Norwich. The Sultzer Reservoir, is one of two underground Victorian, treated water reservoirs originally built in 1871 at Lakenham, Norwich, which are still used by the water company today.

supply of drinking water to our customers in the city and surrounding areas. “Routine maintenance of our equipment is a vital part of our ability to be resilient and keep taps running. It’s always fascinating to see the reservoir emptied and ready for its thorough inspection.”

Between them they store 12 million litres of drinking water as it makes its way to customers’ taps. Their size means it would take almost three years to fill one of them using a normal kitchen tap.

During the inspection process, the reservoir will be completely emptied to allow it to be thoroughly inspected and disinfected. This work is carried out roughly once a decade. Once the final inspection of the reservoir has been completed it will gradually be refilled with drinking water, before being put back into service.

As part of a routine maintenance programme, Anglian Water engineers are undertaking work to inspect the structure of the reservoir ensure its kept in tip top condition and can continue to supply safe, clean drinking water to customers in Norwich for years to come. Over 500 underground treated water reservoirs are used by Anglian across the East of England. Unlike the large surface water reservoirs like Alton and Rutland, which store river water before treatment, underground storage reservoirs hold safe, clean drinking water and provide resilient storage at points across Anglian’s 38,000km network of water pipeline. Paul Naylor, Regional Supply Manager for Anglian Water, said: “The Sultzer Reservoir


Despite the recent heavy downpours, Norfolk saw only 58% of the average rainfall expected in August, compared to over 100% further west in the region.

is one of the oldest and most unique storage facilities we have in our region. Despite its age, it continues to be an important part of the water network in Norwich and ensures the

Paul continued: “Our region is the driest in the UK, with some parts of it, getting a third less rainfall than anywhere else. Conserving and managing our water resources is what we do every day and completing essential maintenance on our network is just one of the things we do to ensure that our supply systems are resilient whatever the weather.



Welsh Water’s £6.9 million boost People living in Bodelwyddan, Kinmel Bay and Abergele are set to receive a boost to their drinking water thanks to a £6.9 million project to upgrade the drinking water pipes in the area. Work by the not-for-profit utility company, Welsh Water will see over 11km of old pipe which is nearing the end of its operational life replaced with brand new water pipe. In total, the amount of pipe that will be worked on will be the same as the length of 112 football pitches. The work will start at Bodelwyddan Playing fields before moving on to Kinmel Bay and Abergele and is expected to be completed by the end of March 2020. The work forms part of a £6.9 million investment by the company on the drinking water network across Conwy and Denbighshire. This work follows a £12.2 million investment in the drinking water network in parts of Flintshire in 2016/17 and £14.85 million in Anglesey which was completed earlier in the year.

The work will include replacing and cleansing sections of water pipes to make sure customers continue to receive a first class water supply every time they open the tap. One of the main areas of work will be along St Asaph Avenue, in Kinmel Bay where work will be carried out in small sections on the road with traffic lights to minimise disruption. Other work in the area will include Abergele Road and Ronaldsway in Bodelwyddan and Coed Celyn in Abergele. Customers in the area will be able to find out more about the work at two drop-in information events. The first will be held in Bodelwyddan Community Centre 2-6.30pm on August 27th and the second event will be held in Kinmel Bay Church, St Asaph Avenue, 2pm-7pm on August 29th. Customers living near any of the working area will also be informed before work starts in their area.

Denise Yale, Welsh Water’s Project Manager said: “With some parts of the water network laid many years ago, the time has come for us carry out essential work to make sure customers continue to receive a first class water supply. Our work here reflects our commitment to achieve this and we would like to thank people for their cooperation while we carry out the work. “I would encourage customers to attend one of our information events to see our plans for the work and so our staff can answer any questions they may have.” Welsh Water is investing heavily and working hard to ensure top quality services to all the communities it serves. The company is investing £1.7 billion in its water and sewerage network between 2015 and 2020.


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Big data goes down the plughole to fight future public health threats Scientists at the University of Bath’s Water Innovation and Research Centre are developing new ways of monitoring public health at home and in lowincome countries by analysing wastewater Rising antimicrobial resistance and fastspreading epidemics like Ebola and the Zika virus are well-publicised threats to global health. Now, scientists at the University of Bath’s Water Innovation and Research Centre (WIRC @ Bath) are working out how big data and wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) could help combat these issues and keep people around the world healthy. The World Health Organisation (WHO) stated in 2016 that antimicrobial resistance (also known as AMR or drug resistance) is a major threat to health and human development. AMR is the ability of a microorganism (like bacteria, viruses, and some parasites) to stop an antimicrobial (such as antibiotics, antivirals and antimalarials) from working against it. As a result, standard treatments become ineffective, infections persist and may spread to others. Now, studies being carried out by WIRC @ Bath staff could point to how wastewater monitoring could contribute to fighting both AMR and the spread of aggressive epidemics by reducing the level of pharmaceuticals reaching wastewater treatment works, and creating an early warning system aimed at safeguarding public health. Barbara Kasprzyk-Hordern, Professor in Environmental and Analytical Chemistry, is


based in the University of Bath’s Department of Chemistry and is a member of its Water Innovation and Research Centre, WIRC @ Bath. Prof Kasprzyk-Hordern says that instead of monitoring the health of individuals through blood or urine samples, more can be learned about a community’s health at a ‘birds eye’ level when wastewater is monitored.

highlight emerging public health issues in the Stellenbosch area. Following a year’s study of the underlying geographic conditions and seasonal variabilities, the team is now using state-of-the-art tools to target more than 200 biomarkers, including genes, proteins and chemicals that help paint a picture of local community health.

Doing do over wide geographic areas and in long-term studies will give public health bodies new tools in understanding a population’s health, the risks it is facing, and the possibility of developing early warning systems to highlight potential threats before they become crises.

Prof Kasprzyk-Hordern says: ““We hope that monitoring of selected biomarkers over long periods will speed up the evaluation of public health status, prediction of future crises, and development of mitigation strategies for rapid- or slow-onset hazards, even before they manifest characteristic end points, such as death in the case of pandemics.”

She says: “We have been studying for several years how water systems form a critical part of the public health landscape. “It’s thanks to this that current research focused on safeguarding people’s health both in the UK and internationally is progressing rapidly, on several fronts.”

ReNEW – developing early warning systems in urban wastewater systems A project managed jointly with South Africa’s Stellenbosch University seeks to develop an early-warning system to quickly

By engineering new integrated sensors for on-site monitoring and building a big data approach to modelling markers within the urban water system in Stellenbosch, the team hopes that urban water profiling can provide real-time responses when certain biomarkers are detected and reduce the burden on public health worldwide.

Urban water fingerprinting

Developed from a Europe-wide study that used wastewater sampling to determine levels of illicit drug use in cities, Urban Water


Fingerprinting (or UWF) is a recent concept in water science. Anyone working in the water industry will know that urban water is complex and everchanging. A mixture of substances, it includes a wide range of human excretion products, all of which have different levels of exposure to stressors (e.g. toxicants and infectious agents) and physiological processes (e.g. specific disease-linked proteins, genes and metabolites). The quantitative measurement of these residues continuously pooled by sewerage systems can provide evidence of the quantity and type of chemical, biological or physical stressors to which the population is exposed and can profile the effects of this exposure, anonymously, at low cost and in real time. Results of UWF studies so far are very promising and therefore it is anticipated that use of the technique will become more widespread. UWF capable of collating and analysing long term datasets has the potential to unravel complexities behind key 21st century public health issues focused on non-communicable and communicable disease epidemics which are rapidly spreading globally. For example, only one daily urban water sample is needed to evaluate more than 300

biomarkers that can determine the state of community-wide health for a community of 100 thousand people, served by one wastewater treatment works – or in lower- and middle-income countries, disposing directly to the local river or open sewer. If undertaken every day for a year, changes in public exposure over time, as well as infectious disease spread and the appearance of new pathogenic strains, could be surveyed for the whole community at a relatively low cost. As yet, such a tool does not exist. However, Kasprzyk-Hordern says that if developed, it would have the potential to vastly improve health outcomes, provide quality-of-life benefits and reduce cost of healthcare globally. “Most importantly it could benefit all community members, irrespective of their socioeconomic status,” she adds. Further work is critically needed to develop a system that is recognised internationally to influence regulatory and political decisions both of localised importance (e.g. air pollution in urban areas or infectious disease spread in low resource settings) and at an international scale (e.g. antimicrobial resistance). Several aspects – including accurate measurement of population sizes, work into identifying biomarkers and crucially the development of low-cost sensors, require further investigation.

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We have been studying for several years how water systems form a critical part of the public health landscape. It’s thanks to this that current research focused on safeguarding people’s health both in the UK and internationally is progressing rapidly, on several fronts. Barbara Kasprzyk-Hordern, Professor in Environmental and Analytical Chemistry

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Yorkshire Water to trial electric vehicles

Yorkshire Water is trialling electric vehicles at Knostrop Energy & Recycling Centre in Leeds as part of its commitment to be net zero carbon by 2030. Site Product & Process Engineers will be ditching diesel power for at least the next three months, using the four vehicles to move Yorkshire’s largest wastewater treatment works. The trial comes shortly after the company opened its new £72m anaerobic digestion facility at the site which turns waste into energy. Combined with the wind turbine the site is often completely self-sustainable. Yorkshire Water Transport General Manager, David Hibbs, said: “Protecting the environment is a big priority for us and is one of our five big goals, so I am thrilled we have begun this trial. “We are always looking at ways to see how we can reduce our carbon footprint in fleet and if the trial is successful, we will have a bigger rollout across sites. “This is however just the start and we will continue to invest in innovation and look at ways to become even better.” The regions Operations Manager, Joseph Kelly, whose team will be using the vehicles, said: “We are proud of the strides we have made at Knostrop to create and save energy and this trial is a big part of that. My team and I can’t wait to try them out.”

United Utilities and Rivers Trust get up close and personal in UK first It has always been a close relationship and now it’s become even closer after it was announced that the North West’s water company has brought a Rivers Trust employee into its fold in the first secondment of its kind in the UK. Dan Turner from the Yorkshire Dales Rivers Trust is spending 18 months with the company in a bid to identify ways that the two organisations can work even more effectively together to benefit the raw water quality of the region’s rivers. The environmental science specialist is working two days a week at the Warringtonbased firm in its environment and asset strategy natural capital team so that he can better understand how water companies work, help identify and deliver catchment interventions and find ways for the two organisations to work collaboratively to deliver common objectives. Dan explained: “We share a lot of similar objectives as we’re both striving for healthy water environments. Clean


water is a key investment driver for water companies, and the approach has traditionally been to tackle any issues through civil engineering solutions or chemical treatment processes. But the tide is starting to turn, with some companies like United Utilities, wondering if this is the most effective approach. “Rivers Trusts understand the importance of taking an integrated catchment approach to ensure a better water environment. The river and catchment cannot be decoupled. United Utilities is on the same page, looking at ways integrated catchment management can help to reduce the burden on treatment works, while also providing environmental, social and economic benefits.” During his time with United Utilities, Dan will be working on several major projects including looking at the causes of flooding and how to stop it at source, reducing phosphates in catchments across the North West and working on the European Union’s Natural Course project.

This secondment has been made possible by both organisations participating in the Natural Course project, an EU funded partnership project aimed at developing closer relationships between organisations to deliver more effective improvements in water quality. United Utilities is keen for the secondment to help it develop its drive towards a more integrated approach to catchment management. To meet the challenges facing society there’s a need to deliver more resilient catchments that manage water effectively to prevent both drought and flooding. United Utilities is committed to assessing its catchments as a system rather than focusing on individual elements. It is using a Catchment Systems Thinking approach to understand the needs of the catchment as a whole and develop and deliver solutions that address these, improving the North West’s natural capital for future generations. Working with partner organisations, like the Rivers Trust, is crucial to being able to deliver this objective.


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atg Evoqua provides water disinfection solutions in Ireland James Leigh, Regional Disinfection Lead at atg Evoqua explains how the company developed a product to meet a specific need. Irish Water is carrying out a major disinfection programme at water treatment plants which will help to safeguard water supplies and improve the quality of drinking water for homes and businesses throughout the Republic of Ireland. The upgrading of disinfection systems under the National Disinfection Programme will minimise the risk of people having to boil their water. Irish Water is investing over €65 million as part of the National Disinfection Programme involving the upgrade and standardisation of disinfection systems currently installed in over 800 sites including water treatment plants, pumping stations and reservoirs. Their design and build contractor in Limerick and Tipperary is Glan Agua, part of Mota-Engil Engenharia e Construção, Portugal’s leading EPC contractor. Their task was to upgrade existing disinfection systems to improve drinking water quality and ensure compliance with the current Drinking Water Quality Regulations. “One project we undertook was a comprehensive upgrade of Bruree Pumping Station in Co. Limerick”, says Robert Kearney Project Manager at Glan Agua. “This involved upgrading the existing sodium hypochlorite system to provide enhanced control for improved bacteriological compliance and installing a state-of-the-art duty/standby UV system to ensure protozoan compliance and improve drinking water quality.” It seemed to Robert’s team that the easiest way to complete the project in the shortest time would be to design a self-contained hypochlorite dosing and UV system that could be fully prefabricated in Glan Agua’s off-site assembly facility in Cahir Co Tipperary. This would allow a high quality product to be constructed in a controlled environment and tested prior to delivery and installation would cause minimal disruption to the operation of the existing works. It would also provide a standard solution for future projects in Limerick and

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UVLX-1800-6 Drinking Water Installation at Bruree Pumping Station, Limerick

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Tipperary with the added advantage that operations and maintenance staff would see an identical plant at each works, reduce spares holding and minimise maintenance costs.

atg Evoqua’s UVLX-1800-6 comprises a 316L stainless steel IP66 reactor containing a single 800W low pressure amalgam lamp giving best-in-class efficiency and lamp life. The reactor is equipped with UV intensity and temperature monitoring and an automatic wiper system to ensure peak performance. A Spectra II local control panel controls the lamp output by varying the power in response to flow, UV transmittance and UV intensity. The system is designed for low flows of variable quality water, so provides the high degree of flexibility needed in a standard package.

For protozoan control, Glan Agua chose UV. This chemical-free process has a long track record in water disinfection and is particularly effective against protozoans like Cryptosporidium and Giardia and other chlorine resistant microorganisms. UV is a specialised technology and Robert’s team needed help with the design development. They found a willing collaborator in Enva, one of atg Evoqua’s business partners in Ireland. Working closely with Enva and Glan Agua, atg Evoqua designed a low flow UV system, the UVLX-1800-6, which would become an integral part of the Glan Agua standardised design and build for other water schemes. Like all atg Evoqua’s municipal water treatment UV systems, the product is designed to meet the validation protocols of the US EPA Ultraviolet Disinfection Guidance Manual. It also meets the latest UK and European potable drinking water regulations, including the WIMES 801.B specification guidance for closed vessel drinking water UV systems.

Whilst the prime role of the UV system is to ensure that protozoans like Cryptosporidium are destroyed, it also acts as a primary disinfectant to reduce bacteria and viruses as well as improving the palatability of the water. By removing much of the bacterial load, UV reduces the hypochlorite dose required to maintain a free chlorine residual, making chlorination control simpler and reducing the potential for taste and odour and trihalomethane formation. Jamie Barry of ENVA worked effectively as the collaborative engineering link between Glan Agua and atg Evoqua. “It was really enjoyable working with James Leigh at atg Evoqua and the team at Glan Agua to develop a product to service the potable water site at Bruree and others around Ireland.” The Bruree project was completed in July 2019 and was so successful that atg Evoqua has now supplied twenty of the UVLX-1800-6 UV units to Glan Agua for projects for Irish Water schemes in the Limerick and Tipperary, counties of the Republic of Ireland. Whilst the product was developed primarily for municipal applications, it has numerous other applications in industrial water treatment.


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Severn Trent imports Brazilian biomass to treat wastewater Severn Trent has recently imported pea-sized biomass from Brazil, as part of a new approach to clean wastewater at its Minworth treatment works near Birmingham. The Midlands based water and waste company is the first in the UK to import ‘anammox’ granules from countries as far away as Brazil, which will be used to reduce the concentration of unwanted components such as ammonia in wastewater, before it is released into the local rivers. Introducing hungry Brazilian biomass to the process has already seen encouraging results. The anammox plant is currently achieving an ammonia removal rate of over 80%, which has contributed to a 15% reduction in downstream aeration power usage. Elliot Hobbs, project manager said: “Importing biomass from Brazil has enabled us to increase the capacity of our anammox plant


More recently, the team has also imported annomox granules little closer to home, from the Netherlands, increasing their capability to process waste in this way.

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“As Minworth is a significant scale, small improvements at the anammox can have significant operational cost savings further downstream. This resulting saving translates into benefits for our customers in terms of the bills that they pay”

Yorkshire Water has awarded £1billion AMP7 Complex and Minor MEICA Frameworks, covering new build and refurbishment works for all mechanical, electrical, instrumentation, control and automation assets.

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Elliot added: “Now that our anammox process seeding is complete, we are focusing on optimising the plant on a daily basis, by data analysis and finetuning to maximise the efficiency potential of the plant.

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“The Brazilian biomass will react anaerobically to convert ammonia into nitrogen, as long as key operating conditions such as temperature, pH and suspended solid concentrations are maintained. The key benefit is that the process uses significantly less air to complete the conversion, in comparison to the conventional approach.”

Yorkshire Water awards £1bn AMP7 MEICA Frameworks



As the plant matures, and as the biomass multiply, there will be opportunity to export any excess bugs to other anammox plants around the world to assist them with their commissioning process.

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at Minworth. This approach has reduced our operational costs and carbon footprint of our end-to-end ammonia treatment process, which happens to be one of the most costly and energy hungry practises.

11 partners have been appointed following a 12 month procurement process, with the MEICA framework complimenting the Civils frameworks announced recently. Together they complete the procurement process for our AMP7 non-infrastructure works. The 5 year frameworks, with an optional extension of up to 3 years, cover a wide range of assets from installation of simple dosing systems to pumping station refurbishment, significant treatment process improvement and full treatment works installations across both water and wastewater sites. Mark Baker. Head of Programme Delivery commented: “This is the second phase of our procurement process and we would like to welcome our MEICA Partners to support our ambitions and challenges into AMP7. The MEICA Framework Partners will join our Civils Partners and Yorkshire Water in developing our Enterprise Delivery Model. Through this new model, we’re looking to form a collaborative, innovative and efficient delivery vehicle with a focus on engineering excellence and our carbon targets, utilising a Programme First approach. We are confident that this will ensure we achieve our challenges going into AMP7.”



Farmers offered free disposal of unwanted chemicals no questions asked Farmers with unwanted, unlabelled or out-of-date chemicals lurking in their sheds and stores can get them safely disposed of free of charge, courtesy of United Utilities. The water company is offering a pesticides and poisons amnesty to farmers in its drinking water catchments, with no questions asked, to prevent chemicals being poured down the drain or on to land and potentially polluting groundwater and watercourses in Cheshire.

contents or stores of chemicals that they couldn’t use before the pesticide license expired or went out-of-date. It can be difficult and costly to legally dispose of these chemicals which is why we are offering this disposal scheme.

Farmers eligible for this free service include those located in United Utilities’ River Dee, Llangollen Canal, River Dane and Cheshire Borehole drinking water safeguard zones.

“If you are, or think you may be, in possession of illegal or unknown chemicals, please contact your local catchment adviser and arrange for free disposal so that together we can protect rivers and streams across our region.”

Dr. Kate Snow, southern area catchment manager, explained: “We run this offer regularly to allow farmers and landowners to dispose of illegal and out-of-date pesticides. This year, we’re widening the amnesty to include our Cheshire Borehole catchments. “It’s illegal to store or use unapproved or outof-date pesticides. However, many farmers have forgotten bottles and jars with unknown

The amnesty is running until spring 2020. Since the scheme began, more than three tonnes of waste pesticides have been collected and safely disposed of. Products accepted for disposal include those with a MAPP, MAFF, PSPS or ACAS registration number. Generally this includes agricultural and horticultural products approved as

herbicides, fungicides, insecticides, vertebrate control products and growth regulators. Unlabelled or unknown products are also accepted. For details about the amnesty please contact your relevant catchment advisor: River Dee and Llangollen Canal - Robert Llewellyn-Smith on 07979 350185 or Upper Dane and Cheshire Boreholes Veronika Moore on 07917 750379 or Wirral and Warrington Borehole – Elena Morris on 07917 750378 or For more information on this release please contact Clare Vincent in the United Utilities press office on: 07904 112484.


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Pump solutions at Hinkley Point C EDF Energy is building two nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point C in Somerset – the first in a new generation of nuclear power stations that will together produce low-carbon electricity for around 6 million UK homes. The multi-billion pound project is being delivered by several teams working together including BYLOR, Balfour Beatty and Kier BAM Joint Venture (KBJV). KBJV’s role is to work on the site preparation and earthworks stages of the project. A key part of the work carried out by KBJV is the excavation of what is known as the “heat-sink”, the huge area that will eventually contain all the cooling water infrastructure and pump house. KBJV took up an offer from James McKiver, Strategic Account Manager at Selwood, for a free trial of a Selwood D150 drainer pump. During a period of heavy rain in October 2017, Selwood’s equipment continued to work as normal, without the breakdowns KBJV had experienced in similar conditions in the past. Following this trial, KBJV turned to Selwood as the main pump supplier, phasing the replacement of the existing on-site pumps with the superior Selwood product. Following an order of 10 Selwood D Range pumps in December, Selwood developed a close partnership with Kier Bam’s water management team, working in close collaboration on the design, pump positioning and optimal performance in the event of a flooding emergency, something which had occurred during the Christmas shutdown in previous years. Selwood’s team then worked closely with KBJV to redesign the pipework runs and the positioning of the pumps on site. The first major project was the dewatering of the heat sink for the first reactor unit.

The pumping equipment had to keep up with a potential 45 litres of water a second, pump it up 39 metres to a booster pump, and then on to a water management zone for treatment before discharge. In dry conditions, where only groundwater was being cleared, a series of pumps and pipework carried the water from the heat sink to an onsite treatment plant 1.5km away. To keep fuel costs down, Selwood developed a pressure sensor for the booster pump which plugged into auto-start terminals on the pumps. This would auto start the booster when water was detected – meaning the pump was only in operation when needed. Similar sensors have been installed on boost pumps around the site that are pumping contaminated groundwater – a far more elegant and safe solution than the previous supplier’s system which used tanks and floats which were regularly overflowing, leading to pollution events. So far, Selwood’s specialist solutions team has assisted in sizing and calculating flows for more than 50 pumps on site and 54km of pipework. Selwood invested £2million into equipment for Hinkley Point C, manufacturing 30 new pumps especially for the project, and at the peak of the works had 106 pumps on site. SelWatch, Selwood’s in-house developed remote telemetry technology, ensures equipment can be monitored at all times, with any issues flagged instantly by text message, phone call or email. This has minimised delays caused by flow breakdowns and power failures, assisting KBJV in keeping on schedule. As well as installing its solutions, Selwood played a key role in providing training to


senior members of the KBJV team on technical aspects including flow curves, sweet spots of pump curves, working out friction loss and pipework sizing. In late January 2019 a major milestone was reached when the platform was formally handed over from KBJV to the Project’s main civil contractor, BYLOR. This allowed the construction of the permanent civil works in the area to begin. The Selwood solution was acknowledged as a vital part of the puzzle in ensuring the works were delivered without penalties for lost time. Upon completion of the heat sink for Unit 1, Selwood’s teams turned their attention to delivering a similar solution for the second unit. Hinkley Point C is a textbook example of Selwood’s close collaborative relationships with its partners. The project sees Selwood technical support teams, engineers, electricians and a project manager on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week. James McKiver, Strategic Account Manager for Selwood, lived on campus at the Hinkley Point C site for 18 months to ensure a constant presence at the site. Damion Hopkins, Foreman of the KBJV Water Management Team, said: “Removing the water from a site of this magnitude has been a challenge for the KBJV Water Management Team but it has been crucial in allowing the site to keep on track in all weathers. Working closely with James McKiver and the Selwood team, they have assisted not only with supply but also with their wealth of technical knowledge allowing us to achieve the project’s programmed targets.”


Pipe Bursting: Keys to Success

There is no doubt that there are many contractors well-versed in the pipe bursting technique. Even so, Mark Maxwell, Trenchless Application Specialist at HammerHead Trenchless, said that he still sometimes runs across a contractor in trouble that could have been prevented. Maxwell has been an operator, technician and consultant in the pipe bursting method and its equipment almost as long as it has been available in the U.S. During that time, he has noted several keys to successful pipe bursting job completion.

Prior preparation

Maxwell’s first contractor tip is “Do your homework.” He said: “Know everything you can about a job before you begin. Get access to soil sampling results. Know any work that’s been done on the line. Even check what the temperature’s going to be.” Preparation should include knowing product specifications and manufacturer recommendations. If the equipment manufacturer offers project consultation, make use of it. Maxwell said one obvious consideration is to have equipment properly sized to the job. If contractors don’t own equipment matched to the job, they should rent it or consider buying it, expanding their capabilities for future jobs. Be prepared to alter pit size. “The industry rule of thumb is 3 to 1,” Maxwell said. “A pipe 3 meters down would need at least a 9-meterlong entry pit.” However, pit length often needs to be longer. The pipe’s wall thickness, the manufacturer’s own recommendations, and even ambient temperature must be factored in since cold pipe cannot bend as easily. One pipe manufacturer, Maxwell said, recommends a 12-to-1 ratio for the pit for one of its products. “Sure, contractors could try to use their bucket to push the pipe down, but why struggle with it? Plus, you’re marring up brand new pipe before you even put it in the ground.”

Soil conditions determine length of run

Runs of 300 meters or more have been completed in a single pull. Contractors and even their customers may have overambitious expectations due to these successes. Maxwell warned: “Soil conditions determine length of pull. Always. You can’t see the soil the pipe is lying in. Start small.” Even with soil samples in advance, Maxwell suggested contractors start with 100 meters. “At the end of that run, if you’re still pulling at 7.5 tonnes, you don’t want to increase the length. We did a 275-meter pull recently on an extensive pipe replacement job, but only after we started with a 100-meter, then increased to 150 and 230. We knew then we could attempt 275 meters.” Soil conditions also determine lubrication requirements. Clay soils typically require polymers. For sandy soils, the contractor can


use bentonite. “Upsizing pipe almost always requires lubrication to get the pipe in place before returning, displaced soil seizes it.”

Pneumatic vs static technique

When soil conditions are wet, Maxwell cautions not to use the pneumatic pipe bursting method. “Think of it in terms of working with cement. Cement contractors vibrate concrete to increase its density and strength. Pneumatic bursting tools can make wet soil conditions so difficult, it can stop progress midway through.” Static pulling method in difficult soil raises its own concerns. “When a pull gets too tough for your pneumatic tool, it simply stops progressing,” Maxwell said. “But static pullers will just continue pulling. It’ll tear the pipe apart. Watch your gauges.”

Giving longer runs a rest

Pushing to beat a deadline might tempt contractors to make reconnections prematurely. “Longer runs stretch pipe as it’s pulled in,” Maxwell said. “You may have quit pulling, but the pipe continues moving.” Reconnecting laterals before the pipe contracts completely can result in connection failures. Some longer projects might require waiting overnight before connecting laterals.

said working with fusible pipe is especially critical. An inexperienced fusion welder’s joint might look good enough at the surface but come apart later in the ground. “Doing two supervised fusion welds is not sufficient training. Get your fusion welders trained.”

Safety, maintenance

Maxwell’s final advice deals with routine worksite safety measures and machine care. Contractors should ensure they properly shore the pits, set cribbing and brace the wall. Hydraulic hoses should be inspected and kept from damage during transport and as the machine is raised and lowered in the pit. “Learn and follow safety requirements and observe your equipment manufacturer’s recommended maintenance routine.” No one can completely avoid unexpected surprises on a given job, but Maxwell said these common- sense tips ensure pipe bursting contractors of their greatest chances for successful runs


Although workers should be trained for any task they are assigned to do, Maxwell


tough equipment. trusted support. HammerHead Trenchless provides precision-manufactured equipment, comprehensive trenchless materials and supplies, and all the training and support you need to attack anything standing between you and rehabilitated pipes. Offering only the best and most innovative technologies available, our responsive team is by your side throughout the life of your quality HammerHead equipment – no matter how down and dirty your trenchless needs may be.


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Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Improving monitoring and wastewater assets to reach Zero Pollutions by 2030 By Lewis Brown

fail and anticipate failure before it happens prevention rather than cure.

Gaining a better understanding

Zero pollutions

Southern Water is a company in transformation and achieving zero pollutions by 2030 is one of the many ambitious targets underpinning that journey. We’re delving deeper and gaining a better understanding of why incidents happen, as well as a forensic understanding of all our wastewater treatment works, pumping stations and network, how we monitor and analyse flows. This means we have the data to be able to target investment to those sites most likely to


Is our zero pollutions target achievable? Absolutely. That’s why Dr Nick Mills, head of asset performance for wastewater operations at Southern Water, organised the country’s first Zero Pollutions Conference in London during the summer. In combination with Isle Utilities, the focus was to drive challenging conversations and to discuss how wastewater pollution comes from multiple sources, the legacy of pre-1960s combined drains and sewers, failure of utility equipment and customer behaviour.

Global experts shared their knowledge on cutting pollution and Dr Mills emphasised that reaching zero pollutions in a decade can only be achieved if everyone works together. At Southern Water we’ve been working hard over the past couple of years to better understand the problems our sites face. We’re also auditing the top 10% of our sites which we know have the biggest impact on the environment and tested and checked all our equipment. We’ve carried out health tests of around 236 of our pumping stations (there are 350) to check that we know where the spill points are and what could cause an issue. We’ve all been through rigorous compliance training and we are finding and reporting


Water & Wastewater Wastewater Treatment Monitoring & Technology & Analysis

We’ve found there is a strong correlation and 10% of our sites with the highest environmental consequence were responsible for 45% of pollutions in 2019.

Investing in the future and our Pollution Reduction Plan

On top of investing £100 million in bringing our IT team in-house, we’ve invested £442 million improving our sites and network in 2018-19, including our monitoring and analysis capabilities and also telemetry. Our investments in our Bathing Water Enhancement Programme has also been recognised especially recently, with more bathing waters in the south east recording some of their best ever results.

Root cause analysis

Pollutions this year have increased. Our evidence and analysis of the events shows that weather and more specifically abnormal weather from climate change has very little bearing on the incidents we have seen. Rainfall does impact assets but has not caused significant issues for treatment works.

Aerial view of Scaynes Hill wastewater treatment works, and above right, Budds Farm Wastewater Treatment Works in Havant, Hampshire – images © Southern Water more issues than ever before. This has an impact on our reporting figures but it also means we are demonstrably finding and fixing issues earlier. It also means fewer incidents that can potentially impact the environment.

Prevention and detection

The focus on causal analysis and detailed understanding of issues on our sites means that we are learning faster and reporting issues quicker as evidenced in our dramatic increase in self-reporting. We are putting in place a 24/7 wastewater desk which will work alongside our duty managers to ensure we respond swiftly and with dedicated resource. This is coupled with a resilient approach out of hours and redoubled preparedness for weekends. Our developing resilience matrix will enable us to report resilience dynamically looking at actions from the pollutions database and reporting on improvements that are being made. We are on a journey to being more compliant. The increase in pollution numbers is expected as we investigate more, we understand the root causes and with better measurement, we have seen an upward trend in reported incidents - but this is because we’re better at spotting asset performance.

However foul sewers, pumping stations and combined sewers are affected by rainfall and this has an impact on surface water flooding, which we work closely with local authorities to solve. Dry weather can impact the severity of an incident if flows have not been running it can lead to bigger blockages. The increase in pollutions has been driven by an increased awareness and reporting improvements. However, underlying causes relate to asset issues which is why increased investigations and health checks are being carried out at 400 treatment works and pumping stations. This work will be complete by early next year. The biggest impact currently on our sites and cause of incidents is power outage and blips.

Power and measuring spill times

The site health checks enable us to create a targeted maintenance schedule for all sites. However the biggest issue we have found is the resilience of the power supply on sites. We’re working with other companies in the area to establish if there is a network issue in the south east and how we can solve this. We are also investigating our own on site power resilience, this includes checking and maintenance of all back-up generators and ensuring our processes are in place for health checks on all pumps and the control philosophy is suitable for the site. We have also carried out checks across all sites to ensure we have accurate time to spill understanding which gives us a priority roster of sites which have a repeated history of failure and which sites have a high consequence if they do spill.

This improved performance was the result of the assiduous work carried out under the SWS Bathing Water Enhancement Programme, and our improved coastal modelling, the ‘Beachbouy’ initiative, our ‘Beauty of the Beach campaign’. We’re currently piloting our Beachbuoy scheme at two harbours in our region, as well as a small selection of bathing waters. Langstone and Chichester Harbour were chosen for the pilot as they are also used as recreational waters. Along with the bathing waters at Hill Head, Ventnor, Bexhill and Joss Bay. We plan to provide similar information for other bathing waters in the near future. During this pilot, we’ll add updates between 9am and 5pm but we’re aiming for 24/7 updates in the future. The funding of wastewater sites, such as the £100 million redevelopment of our Woolston treatment works, Southampton, and replacing Thanet’s old sewer network in Kent to help protect the environment are also bigger examples of how we’re transforming as a company, improving assets and allowing for better monitoring of wastewater flows. We have also put in place (and resourced) a Pollution Reduction Plan which allows us to prioritise improvement activity and response resources at sites which have the highest potential environmental impact (and which has been shared with the Environment Agency).

A final word on improving environmental performance

We’ve created an Environment+ programme which looks at all aspects of environmental compliance and performance. Alongside wastewater treatment works compliance, it also focuses on improving river quality, reducing pollution incidents and flooding and enhancing bathing water quality. Details of the work being carried out by the Environment+ programme can be found in our Annual Report (which was published on our website). We have recruited a team of environmental compliance advisors and created environmental champions within the business to increase awareness and introduce cultural change.


Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

IVARIO: Bridging the Gap between Laboratory and Consumer IVARIO may be a newcomer on the UK market, but the company has been selling its popular home water testing kits in Germany, Austria and Switzerland since 2013. IVARIO was founded in 2013 in Hamburg by Söhnke Mücke, Saskia Gerber and Sascha Zielinski. From the outset, the company has made it its goal to make water testing simple and accessible. What started as a small selection of conventional water tests expanded into an extensive range of water and asbestos test packages designed for a variety of purposes, and the company has since become Germany’s leading online shop for water testing kits. With business in Germany flourishing, the company aimed to replicate this success on an international scale. The launch of the UK online shop in July 2019 marked a significant step in these plans for international growth. While entering the UK market at such a turbulent political time may not be easy, the company sees great potential in the market and remains upbeat and excited for the challenge. IVARIO’s vision is simple, and this simplicity is reflected in both the test procedure and how results are presented. First, the customer purchases a test kit online, which includes all the material needed to take the sample at home: sample bottles, instructions, return packaging, and ice packs if necessary. After taking a water sample, the customer then sends the sample back to the laboratory. After the analysis is complete, the results are uploaded onto the IVARIO website and the customer can view them online using a personal access code or download them. The results are presented in layman’s terms, with each result clearly juxtaposed to the maximum concentration of that substance set out in the UK Water Supply (Water Quality) Regulations,


and innovation, and experience and entrepreneurship, that gives the company the upper hand: traditional ‘German’ accuracy with a modern twist, if you like. Add this to the wide range of available tests, affordable prices and ongoing customer support, and you have something quite unique. The laboratories can test any kind of water, but the tests are geared more towards those who want to privately test their drinking water and need confirmation that it does not contain high levels of contaminants. and general tips are provided if that limit is exceeded. IVARIO also offers an Englishspeaking support service so customers can contact the company by phone or email for further advice at any point during the process. IVARIO belongs to and works very closely with the GBA Group, one of Europe’s leading laboratory and consulting service providers. The GBA Group has been working in the field of environmental analysis since 1975 and owns an extensive network of laboratories and an impressive portfolio of analytical methods. The water samples are tested for potential contaminants such as heavy metals and bacteria using methods such as ICP mass spectrometry. While the laboratory’s scientific expertise and longstanding experience in the industry ensure results are highly accurate and reliable, IVARIO’s know-how in the world of e-commerce and its customer-orientated approach guarantee an enjoyable user experience. It is this blend of tradition

IVARIO is excited to see what the future holds. Besides continuously expanding its product range, the company strives to keep optimising its logistic processes and customer service as well as building a solid customer base in the UK and abroad. Although there are challenges that come with international expansion, the company remains optimistic for the future and focused on its goal of making water testing accessible to everyone. For more information on IVARIO and its products, visit:

To contact the IVARIO team, please email For press enquiries, please email:




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Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

The never-ending battle against emerging contaminants: a focus on PFAS What are emerging contaminants? Emerging contaminants are likely to be a never-ending nightmare. Why? As we develop, advance and expand our pharmaceutical prowess, create new industrial chemicals, new pesticides and herbicides, surfactants and personal care products, it becomes increasingly clear that we’re always going to be dealing with so called emerging contaminants. So, what exactly are they? Broadly speaking, they’re any synthetic (man-made) or naturally occurring chemicals that we’re not routinely monitoring in the environment but either already exist in the environment or are very likely to migrate into the environment at some point in the future. Moreover, we must think not only about the source chemicals but also the degradation and transformation products that emerge during the unintentional treatment and natural breakdown of the source chemicals. Specifically, those chemicals labelled as emerging contaminants are thought to have some detrimental effect on either the environment at large, or specific animal populations (including but not limited to humans). It is very likely that we have been releasing emerging contaminants into the environment for a long time but, up until recently, we have not had the technology required to detect such a diverse range of chemicals at such low concentrations. With an ever-expanding range of chemicals to monitor it has been, and will continue to be, difficult for industry to keep up with. Very few emerging contaminants are routinely monitored, and our minimal knowledge of ecological and toxicological effects is only supplanted by our current lack of remediation solutions.

PFAS (poly-fluorinated alkyl substances) – sticking around where they’re not wanted PFAS comprise a huge range of different organic compounds. They’re generally used in applications such as non-stick coatings, stain resistant and water resistant textiles, cleaning

products and even food packaging, to name just a few. It does not need to be pointed out, given the extensive and widely valued list of applications, how widespread the use of PFAS is. While PFAS have been widely designated as emerging contaminants, which the US, Europe, Australia and the UK have been loosely monitoring for some time, the focus has been on a very narrow subset of the PFAS family. Specifically, the focus up to now has largely been on PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid) and PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonic acid) – their potential impact on human health is already widely recognised due to their resistance to biodegradation, tendency to bioaccumulate, and toxic properties. The UK’s Drinking Water Inspectorate offers guidance on the restriction of PFAS and PFOA concentrations in drinking water, although these are relatively high when compared with restrictions in place in other parts of the world. Perhaps more concerning than current regulatory levels is the complete lack of regulation of the multitude of other PFAS, especially in our drinking waters. It has only recently been acknowledged that the thousands of perfluorinated variants and precursor compounds are likely to be equally impactful on the environment and human health. Focusing on only PFOS and PFOA potentially obfuscates a much larger and more widespread problem than initially anticipated. A primary challenge in dealing with emerging contaminants in general, and specifically PFAS, is the development of laboratory techniques that are both sensitive enough to detect contaminants at the levels required but broad enough in their application to detect wideranging variants of said contaminants.

is the TOP assay. Previous techniques used to detect PFAS were limited in their application in that they could detect just a handful of PFAS and their precursors - only calibrated compounds could be reliably reported. To truly assess the impact of PFAS it is largely accepted that the total mass of PFAS would be far more apposite. The TOP assay works by converting precursors into detectable known compounds, allowing the routine analysis to be applied yet yield a truer picture of the total PFAS contamination. Application of the TOP assay saw a 75% increase in detected concentration of PFAS in water and a truly astronomical 240% increase in detected concentration of PFAS in soil composite materials. What this really demonstrates is the extent to which ‘hidden’ precursors and related compounds are being ignored by conventional analytical methods and, more importantly, the extent to which we may therefore be underestimating their presence in areas of primary concern to human health, like our water supply, as well as their detrimental impact on our environment. With the world’s population growing, chemical engineering and pharmaceutical industries advancing at an ever-increasing pace, and environmental awareness at an all-time high, we need to double down on the development of preventative strategies and, for where that may fail, the development of more sophisticated and informative monitoring technologies.

One example of this approach that was recently commercialised by ALS laboratories



ALS UK & Ireland As a leading laboratory group, ALS annually test close to 1,000,000 environmental samples throughout Europe. ALS utilises a broad portfolio of Inorganic, Microbial and Organic tests, including standard and bespoke analytical suites for environmental compliance in a range of matrices including emissions, air, eluates, sediments, sludge, soils, waste and water. As one of the UK’s & Ireland‘s leading suppliers of drinking water analysis, ALS are able to provide our customers with accurate and quality assured results that are UKAS and DWTS accredited. From our dedicated „Centre of Excellence“ in Wakefield, Yorkshire we analyse Drinking Water for over 5 million homes in the UK. Our UKAS and DWTS accredited laboratories are specifically designed for drinking water chemistry and microbiological analysis, utilising automation, sample tracking and the latest analytical methods and techniques. From basic microbiology to complex organic analysis you can trust ALS to provide you with legally defensible results in a timely manner.

ALS Environmental Ltd., Torrington Avenue, Coventry, CV4 9GU, U.K. Tel: +44 (0)24 7642 1213 Fax: +44 (0)24 7685 6575 • Email:

Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Meeting the challenges ahead The contemporary water industry faces many challenges, not least of which is maintaining the essential infrastructure over a huge geographic area, especially given this infrastructure is sometimes located in hard-to-reach places. At the same time, the industry is striving to work more efficiently, achieving more with fewer resources, whilst being more environmentally friendly too. The pressure to make service improvements, without passing the cost on to their customers only adds to the challenges ahead. How best can these challenges be met? Effective water monitoring and analysis is vital so companies can make the best use of precious water resources. Keeping an eye on water flow and quality around the clock is essential, so emerging problems can be identified quickly and more serious problems mitigated. Given the pressure to work more efficiently, data needs to be collected more frequently, so more accurate, evidence-based decisions can be made. Providing power to remote sites for water monitoring equipment can prove a problem given some are off-grid, so an independent power source needs to be installed. A power source no less that is robust, reliable and low maintenance, thereby reducing the need for site visits, which can be time-consuming and costly.

Power anywhere, anytime

Wessex Water, when seeking an additional power source for a water tank in an off-grid location in Somerset, looked to the EFOY Pro fuel cell supplied by Fuel Cell Systems Ltd. When added to their existing solar panels and wind turbines, the direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) provided a reliable standby power source to charge the battery bank when the renewable sources were not operational.


Currently, at work around the globe, EFOY fuel cells have been installed at locations as diverse as the Arctic, the Antarctic and on the equator, illustrating the equipment’s capacity to operate in a wide variety of locations and climates. The fuel cell is capable of operating in excessive temperatures when other supplies fail; when temperatures fall below freezing, the fuel cells self-heat. Their proven track record is underpinned by the fact that over 40,000 fuel cells have been sold worldwide since 2003. Many utilities, agencies and organisations have utilised this reliable remote power source, including the British Antarctic Survey, the BBC, ITV, Trinity House and Bristol Water to name but a few. The Environment Agency has utilised EFOY Pro fuel cells in several projects, providing power to remote sites for operating automated equipment, including at flow monitoring sites to power Hydrometry equipment.

Easily integrated

Straightforward to install and easy to use, EFOY fuel cells are essentially a battery charger that operates when required. Modular systems, with a small footprint, they can be ‘bolted on’ to existing power sources, providing a dependable standby power supply, without the need to replace the entire power system. EFOY Pro fuel cells produce no exhaust gases other than water vapour and a small amount of CO2 (no more in operation than a human produces), meaning they are environmentally friendly. Utilising methanol to produce an electrochemical reaction which splits hydrogen gas molecules (H2) to form hydrogen

ions and electrons. Their small carbon footprint makes them an ideal back-up power supply for renewable power installations, which may not operate in some weathers and light levels. The methanol cannot leak or be accessed given the sealed valve incorporated into the design. EFOY fuel cartridges designed specifically for the purpose are used to supply the methanol, and these are available in a variety of sizes. Suffice to say, original EFOY fuel cartridges must be used to guarantee the maximum operating life of the fuel cells. A versatile system, the fuel cell unit can be connected to up to four fuel cartridges at once using the DuoCartSwitch, meaning a 25 W application can be supported by four M28 fuel cartridges for up to 30 weeks before refuelling is required. Given these fuel cells can be monitored remotely and incorporate very few moving parts, they are low maintenance, saving expenditure over the operating life of the systems. The lack of moving parts means they are quiet too. This quietness is especially beneficial where the equipment is installed in projects designed to protect wildlife, like in the operation of an eel gate, for example. All in all, EFOY fuel cells can be installed for a low-emission, long runtime, standalone power supply that is cost-efficient and reliable. The dedicated team at Fuel Cell Systems provide added value by offering invaluable advice on the use and installation of hydrogen fuel cell systems.


off-grid power supplies Clean, portable, autonomous systems Long runtimes, reduced site visits Quiet power all year round Rugged, all-weather solutions

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Henry Mills at or call us on 01488 50 70 50

Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

PYDRO - SelfPowered Water Network Solutions How much water do you think is lost in our current water networks? On average it is 30% worldwide, due to a lack of data and outdated technology. To improve the ressource efficiency, intelligent and smart technology needs to be installed in our water supply networks. But there is a big limitation, namely a reasonable and easy access to sufficient energy. PYDRO`s self-powered monitoring and sensing solutions enable true off-grid real time monitoring and help reduce leaks and expensive pipe bursts on a global scale. PYDRO`s PT1 is a hydro-powered multisensing unit for use in water abstraction wells, district metering areas (DMA) and custody transfer measurement of potable water. With a smart and innovative energy management the pressure loss is minimized. The System measures flow, pressure and temperature at high accuracy levels everywhere in the network without the need of power supply. It delivers data to manage smart water networks, reduce water leakage, avoid pipe bursts and do quality checks.


Unlike existing products, our system harvests energy with an integrated hydro-power unit at the point of use. It is an all-in-one device that is very easy to installation and start-up. It`s smart energy management feature guarantees low-pressure loss as it only harvests energy a few hours a day. Highprecision measurements is made possible by several integrated and inter-connected sensors. It has got one moving part, ensuring longterm reliability and has an IP68 casing for submersion in flooded chambers. The benefit for the customer is a turnkeysolution with instant data transmission, without the need for additional sensors, batteries, data logger or data transmitter. We enable a two-way self-powered real-time communication and guaranty interoperability with any custom software.

We provide worry-free sensing services for our customers. For PYDRO, service begins with the first customer contact and continues throughout the entire life cycle of the systems installed in their network. The customer can send in devices for inspection, calibration and repair and has the possibility to update the hardware to monitor his assets with PYDRO`s latest technologies all for a monthly fee. As the UK is targeted to be one of the main smart water markets, PYDRO wants to reach out at an early stage. „We are actively seeking pilot customers with whom we can jointly implement initial projects� Would you like to learn more about PYDRO`s technology? Then get in touch at:



Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Optimising water quality management Following its introduction 12 months ago, ATi UK’s SiteBox has been hailed as a global breakthrough in versatile water quality monitoring by industry experts. Managing Director, Dr Mike Strahand, discusses how this early-warning optimisation tool is not only helping to improve compliance ratings, but is also proactively safeguarding water quality and security for customer use. Traditionally, water quality monitoring systems are large, complex board-mounted solutions, which result in lengthy design and installation times - they are almost never “off the shelf”. However, with innovation becoming more vital in water management optimisation and customers needing to take a more proactive rather than reactive approach, our new customer-focused technology is continuing to lead the way. The industry-first SiteBox water quality and control system provides customers with a flexible method for delivering information, even from remote locations in stark contrast to the size and complexity of traditional panel mounted solutions. Due to its size and capabilities, it is often referred to as a ‘water treatment works control system, in a box’. With delivery to start up in minutes, SiteBox is quick to install and can generate live data within an hour. The versatile ‘lift and shift’ system also has a tiny footprint, low water usage and can be configured for dual validation, triple validation and multistream, with up to eight sensors and over 20 parameters to choose from.

Proactive Water Quality Management

Data from trials over the last 12 months has allowed water companies to employ proactive control with water quality management, introducing early-warning alerts to identify potential risks within a variety of applications. Its flexibility means that SiteBox can be used anywhere that water quality measurement and control is needed, from drinking water treatment to process water in the food industry, all housed in a carry-on luggage-sized portable box. Its modular nature enables users to tailor a bespoke monitoring system that fits individual site requirements. SiteBox can be used on its own as the input to a control system, or alternatively as an independent monitoring system that polices existing water quality monitors.


Bespoke, yet off-the-shelf

Over the last 12 months, SiteBox has been used by a variety of customers in trials for different applications, with the results proving to be industry-changing. In response to the drought last summer, a major UK water company needed an emergency start-up solution to bring several drought boreholes back online and into supply. The time scale for this project was extremely demanding, with lead, installation and start up times all critical. Multi-stream SiteBoxes measuring turbidity, residual chlorine and pH were specified, manufactured and delivered in only six weeks, allowing the water company to increase resilience and safeguard water quality. Demonstrating the versatility in its usage, SiteBox has also recently been used by the world’s largest provider of water systems for global events, including sporting games and rock festivals. The components, including pumps, tanks, valves, sensors and plc controllers, are all held in warehouses around the globe. Temporary systems are put together and must be robust, easy to use, easy to ship, easy to start up and easy to maintain. SiteBox has allowed these customers to have off-the-shelf water quality systems ready for immediate deployment. In its most recent implementation, the SiteBox assisted a major UK water company

in carrying out the cleaning and refurbishing of a large service reservoir. SiteBox gave continuous multi-parameter water quality data before, during and after the cleaning process, resulting in huge savings in both time and budget. On-site start up time is one of SiteBox’s strongest points. Delivery to start up on all the projects was under 20 minutes, and typically generated live data (eg SCADA, Web platform) within 30 minutes, dramatically reducing the overall cost of the instrumentation package. Being in a portable case also allows customers to quickly and easily move the system from one site to another.

Future Collaborations

Following the successes of a series of evaluations, SiteBox is now entering a new phase that will see ATi UK working in collaboration with leading global partners, further developing the bespoke solutions and capabilities available for customers. The opportunity to work closely with other technology providers will offer far reaching solutions to water quality monitoring. The need for new, pioneering technology to continue improving performance is everpresent – now is the time to change the future of the water sector for the better. For further information, please contact ATi UK on or visit


Water & Wastewater Wastewater Treatment Monitoring & Technology & Analysis

UV254 Probe

ALERT & ALERT LAB E.Coli Analysers

RAPID ACCURATE IN-SITU Low energy consumption Easy installation and placement Calibrations saved on the Probe Titanium, Stainless Steel, Aluminum options Real-time Measurements BOD,COD,TOC,DOC,SUVA


Scientifically Validated Remote analysis & telemetry rugged field instruments

The surest measure of a changing world - 0845 1081457

A pioneering breakthrough and brand-new approach to water quality monitoring systems SiteBox is a water quality monitoring and control system that replaces large, costly instrumentation, yet will fit individual site requirements. With delivery to start up in minutes, SiteBox is quick to install and can generate live data within an hour. The system also has a tiny footprint, low water usage and can be configured for dual or triple validation plus multi-stream, with up to eight sensors and over 20 parameters to choose from. For more detailed information visit or email at

Solutions for a Smarter Future

Sitebox_Water Industry Journal_180x120mm.indd 1

15/11/2019 14:56


Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Dissolved Methane Monitoring and Control

Using cutting edge technology, Rostech Environmental brings a new approach to dissolved methane monitoring and methane stripping. All too often the methods used for monitoring and control of wastewater are outdated, inefficient and often don’t work. Rostech Environmental since it’s incorporation in 2016 have been working to design, install and commission, bespoke solutions for water and wastewater monitoring. One example of the technology now available is Rostech Environmental’s recently launched dissolved methane sensor system. The methane sensor delivers data very close to real-time, with a sensing range of 0.000 – 0.300mg/l CH4. The sensor utilises technology originating from within the oil and gas industry, where it has been used to check pipeline integrity on the seabed, looking for gas leakage. Developed for this application by Rostech Environmental in collaboration with a German based company. The methane monitoring system is leading edge technology in the wastewater industry and with the introduction of an in-house developed sophisticated software package, it is capable of fully automating a methane stripping process. Using the onboard telemetry, data can be streamed back to an office or any compatible mobile device.


Using their many years of experience in the wastewater industry the team at Rostech Environmental also worked to develop a novel approach to methane stripping. Capable of treating continuous effluent flows up to 300 LPM, the new process is mechanical, unlike the traditional air stripping process, which can be inefficient, wasteful of energy, and expensive to maintain. When used in conjunction with the methane monitoring system, the entire striping process can be fully automated and configured for a start, stop, mode of operation, this automated system allows for rapid pay back of any investment, by reducing energy usage, maintenance, and labour costs, perfect for closed landfill operations. In addition to methane monitoring, Rostech Environmental also offers an extensive range of water and wastewater monitoring systems, with more information available at

ROSTECH Environmental


Water & Wastewater Wastewater Treatment Monitoring & Technology & Analysis

Smart sensor to target deadly legionella bug Potential killer in UK water systems is monitored via ‘internet of things’. A pair of young entrepreneurs have developed a revolutionary smart sensor that is purpose-built to wage war on the deadly legionella bug. Technology expert Florin Mangu and water hygiene engineer Joe Finn are launching the new Remote Tech ‘S1’ sensor via their Stevenagebased research and development company, in response to the increase in the number of legionella outbreaks in the UK. The device monitors water systems and sends an alert if conditions are rife for legionella, a water-borne bacteria that thrives within a specific temperature range. This is of particular importance given the 43% rise in confirmed cases of legionella in England and Wales between 2015 and 2018. The sensor makes use of ‘internet of things’ technology - whereby an intelligent device is connected via the web and is able to communicate data. Water expert Joe (pictured left) says: “Legionella is a potential killer that can lurk within any water system. If it gets into your lungs it can cause Legionnaires’ disease, which is a virulent type of pneumonia. The young and elderly are particularly at risk. During a major outbreak, approximately one in ten people who get Legionnaires’ disease will die.” Technology expert Florin (pictured right) says: “Our sensor is the first of its kind to be specifically designed for legionella. It uses smart technology to detect any abnormalities in temperature. Every two seconds the sensor checks for any changes within a set threshold. We can use this data to provide a comprehensive record in order to keep the public safe at all times.”

Joe Finn and Florin Mangu - founders remote tech 3 When temperatures are normal the sensor remains in live sleep mode and only sends a message to a server once every three hours, hence saving on battery power. But if temperatures change, it awakes and sends an alert. The device removes the need for regular site visits, hence reducing carbon footprints. It is currently undergoing extensive trials in conjunction with a number of large institutions and commercial companies. Florin said: “The feedback we have received so far is extremely positive and we are currently negotiating contracts with clients in a number of different sectors. The S1 sensor is eco-friendly for a cleaner, safer, environment.”

T: 01772 437 040




Rostech Environmental Ltd provides full design, installation, commissioning and maintenance services for an extensive range of monitoring within the water and wastewater industries. Our Products and Services include:

Water and Wastewater Monitoring Flow Measurement & Metering – including noninvasive, doppler and open channel. Process Instrumentation and Control – offering full automation for an extensive range of parameters including temperature, pressure, flow and level. Water and wastewater analysis sensors – from supply only to full installation. Data Acquisition Solutions.

Dissolved Gas Monitoring and Control for

Telemetry & IOT.


Remote Automation.


Edge Computing.

Carbon Dioxide


Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Automating E.coli quantification in wastewater and surface waters Novel field instrumentation allows for sampling and accurately monitoring E.coli concentrations in watersheds, reservoirs, receiving water bodies and throughout the wastewater treatment process. By Dan E. Angelescua and Andreas Hausot Climate change trends, increasing urbanization and fresh water scarcity in large parts of the world are creating significant pressures on the available surface water resources. Contamination and pollution from wastewater plant effluent, combined sewer overflows (CSO), wild animals and agricultural activities can be an important health risk particularly in sensitive areas such as near drinking water intakes, at bathing areas, or at aquaculture sites. Water reuse is being contemplated in many countries, and is already implemented at certain sites, for applications ranging from irrigation for agriculture and public green areas to drinking water use. Bacterial contamination from animal or human waste can have major health implications, with associated hydric diseases ranging from relatively benign conditions like diarrhoea to deadly infections. The World Health Organization as well as regulatory bodies in Europe, the United States and ISO norms advise regular monitoring of faecal indicator bacteria, the most common contamination tracer being Escherichia Coli (E.coli). The presence of such low-resistance indicators confirms presence of faecal pollution, acceptable levels of contamination depending on the intended water use. Reliable quantification of E.coli in fresh waters is therefore paramount for health risk management. The approved laboratory methods that are employed on large scale today require manual sampling, refrigerated sample transportation to a facility within a specified holding time, use of standard laboratory protocols and data interpretation. This procedure is prone to human error as well as sample degradation between sampling and quantification. Even more importantly, results are only available 24 to 72 hours later (depending on method), which is often too long for operational decision making, in a risk management context. Here we describe different uses of the ALERT products that have recently become available from Fluidion, a French manufacturer specializing in rapid field instrumentation for sampling and measuring different types of pollution. Such instruments, available in both in-situ (ALERT System) and portable (ALERT LAB) configuration, enable rapid field quantification of E.coli, with accuracy


levels that are similar to those of current laboratory methods. Quantification typically requires 7-10 hours of analysis, but results may become available as quickly as in 2 hours, depending on the initial surface water E.coli concentration. ALERT LAB portable analysers can also be used in conjunction with a specialized sampling drone (FLUIDION DRONE) that allows up to 14 representative samples of 500-mL each, to be collected in a river, lake or reservoir. The combination of the two technologies enables, for the first time, rapid mapping of microbiological contamination in a large area, for evaluating heterogeneity, identifying localized pollution sources, and providing in-situ validation for hydrodynamic pollution models. ALERT SYSTEM and ALERT LAB have both been used for monitoring bathing sites in the UK, and for identifying concealed pollution sources. In New York City (USA) the ALERT LAB is being used for informing microbial water quality in the Hudson river, at the future site of the Plus Pool (currently, a light sculpture is installed, with colours changing depending on measured water quality). CSO monitoring has been implemented using ALERT technology at multiple sites in the USA and Europe. In Paris (France) multiple ALERT Systems have been installed in the Seine river for several years now, performing daily bacterial baseline monitoring in preparation for the 2024 Olympic Games as well as active bathing water monitoring at the open water swimming site at La Villette (with multiple

daily measurements of E.coli and enterococci). The FLUIDION DRONE has also been used in Paris to perform transverse surveys and rapidly assess pollution heterogeneity in the river, and to map in real time the bacterial pollution dispersion from isolated sources. In Lake Chelan (USA), ALERT has been used yearround by the Lake Chelan Research Institute and Washington Sea Grant for monitoring pump-out station efficiency at marinas. In Berlin, a city where open water swimming has been practiced for decades in the river Spree, E.coli concentrations have been monitored daily using the ALERT System. In Los Angeles, the technology has been used for monitoring drinking water intakes from the LA Aqueduct, as well as reclaimed water lakes. Monitoring reclaimed water quality at wastewater plants is also being performed using ALERT at multiple European sites. The bacterial sampling and measurement technologies briefly described in this article have proven their reliability in very diverse operational installations, providing unique data that were previously difficult, or impossible, to gather. Bacterial monitoring in real-world situations, combining laboratorylike accuracy and fast time-to-result, represents ground-breaking progress in terms of health risk assessment and mitigation policy support, while simultaneously providing operational management tools to water utilities, municipalities and bathing site managers worldwide.


Water & Wastewater Wastewater Treatment Monitoring & Technology & Analysis

Great interest shown in Photonic Measurements range of UV254 analysers at Aquatech 2019. Photonic Measurements were exhibiting the full range of their UV254 measurement products at Aquatech in Amsterdam in November. The show attracted an international audience with enquiries from 50 countries at the Photonic Measurements stand. Founded in 2014, Photonic Measurements has built a portfolio of UV254 measurement devices including truly portable analysers that complement the company’s process systems. Interest in the products came from a wide range of sectors, including wastewater; drinking water; industrial; food and beverage and environmental. Photonic Measurements were located in Hall 12, alongside most of the instrumentation companies. There has been a growth interest in UV absorption and the benefits of providing fast surrogate measurement of parameters such as COD, BOD and TOC and Photonic Measurements are ideally placed to provide cost effective solutions. The modern interface and small footprint of the Photonic Measurements’ analysers demonstrated a clear advantage for customers, especially when combined with huge data storage and ease of access to the results on its portable range. Feedback on the range was excellent, drawing comments like comments like “Very Cool” and “Beautiful” from other vendors. Having built its product range with OEM customers, Aquatech was an excellent opportunity for Photonic Measurements to show off its own brand products and to engage

The small footprint of the process probes meant they could be used with ease in drinking water and wastewater treatment setups, and the automated spray wash was of particular interest to those working with sludge management and wastewater treatment. The industrial customers liked the ability to have real-time reporting of COD, especially the food and beverage customers as they were very concerned over their water quality and wanted to be able react as quickly as possible to possible issues.

UV254 Go! directly with end users and potential resellers. It is always good to find out which features your customers find most beneficial. Our enhanced product portfolio caters for a wide range of individual customer requirements. The portable Dip Probe proved very popular with customers wanting to do well testing, site inspections and measure the water quality at various stages of treatment and in awkward locations.

We are excited about the level of interest in our products, actively engaging with all our potential customers and the opportunities for the year ahead. If you would like to find out more about Photonic Measurements visit, call us on +44 (0) 28 9210 6263 or email us at

By providing a range of probe materials; aluminium, stainless steel and titanium, the company can address markets with a food safe requirement, regular process conditions and more challenging environments like desalination and oil and gas. There were even solutions for some of our fellow exhibitors, including UV disinfection, Ozonation and Reverse Osmosis membrane companies expressing particular interest in commissioning, optimisation and reporting upon their water treatment methods. The company has already signed up for Aquatech 2021 and will be exhibiting at WWEM in Telford in 2020, as well as attending a range of other exhibitions.

Dip Probe and controller


Water & Wastewater Monitoring & Analysis

Bringing the lab to the water – break-through technology for continuous water monitoring SouthWestSensor Ltd has developed a nanodroplet microfluidics based platform technology that brings lab analysis to the water. Perfectly suited for continuous monitoring of nutrients and pollutants in fresh and sea water, covering applications ranging from environmental monitoring to waste water process control. Water sensing approaches over the years have mainly focused on optical or electrode based electrochemical approaches. While perfectly suited for some applications, considerable limitations still exist in terms of specificity and long-term performance. Wet chemistry based approaches as routinely used in testing labs can provide a solution, but often require frequent reagent change and extensive servicing. SouthWestSensor has developed a revolutionary approach that requires only minute volumes of liquid reagents to autonomously and quasi-continuously measure critical water parameters. The proprietary nanodroplet approach is the brain child of Dr. Xize Niu, SouthWestSensor’s Founder and also Associate Professor at the University of Southampton. ‘Nanodroplet

microfluidics has been used in the lab for some time but typically requires significant instrumentation. We have pioneered a proprietary compact nanodroplet microfluidics format which is perfectly suited for in-the-field deployment. It’s exciting to start to see this translating into the commercial domain’. The developed nanodroplet based water sensor probe has already been tested for simultaneous monitoring of key water pollutants nitrite & nitrate. In a multi-week tidal river deployment, autonomously generated sensor data was found to be in excellent agreement with lab based measurement of grab samples (Environ. Sci. Technol. 2019, 53, 16, 9677-9685). The data quality is not surprising given that lab proven validated test chemistries are used, coupled with regular calibration with an on-device standard. Another advantage is that the nanodroplet platform approach lends itself to a rapid roll-out of additional tests. Following the initial nitrite & nitrate sensor launch, phosphate and ammonia sensors are already in the pipeline for launch in the first half of 2020. The water industry has taken note of this new approach, one with real disruptive potential. At the recent Aquatech Amsterdam 2019 exhibition, SouthWestSensor’s DropletSens-NO3 device was a finalist for the Innovation Award. Dr. Oliver Hofmann, SouthWestSensor CEO is leading the company’s early commercialisation efforts. ‘Microfluidic approaches all too often look promising on paper but fail to translate into commercial applications. SouthWestSensor has put in the required effort in terms of design and engineering to translate nanodroplet microfluidics into an effective and commercially viable solution for quasi-continuous sensing of critical water parameters. The key value proposition is a low-cost sensor device that autonomously produces high-frequency lab-quality data. In our case this is achieved with reagent volumes that are orders of magnitude lower compared to our closest competitors. This critically translates into reduced maintenance


requirements and underpins autonomous deployment for many weeks or even months.’ As lead users and early adopters, SouthWestSensor will be working with Environmental Agencies to use the device for nutrient and pollutant monitoring in lakes, rivers and the sea. Industrial target segments include fish farms, water utility and nutrient recovery companies, to name but a few. According to Dr. Hofmann ‘Providing high performance, low maintenance measurement tools is key for monitoring water quality and

“As lead users and early adopters, SouthWestSensor will be working with Environmental Agencies to use the device for nutrient and pollutant monitoring in lakes, rivers and the sea. Industrial target segments include fish farms, water utility and nutrient recovery companies, to name but a few. “ associated processes. With our high-frequency lab-quality data we hope to play a significant part in the drive towards digitisation of water quality. To this end we are currently looking for investors as well as commercial and strategic partners to maximise our reach and impact across the water industry’. It is hoped that this advanced sensing capability can help the water industry to optimise processes to better protect this ever more precious resource.



Supply Chain Networking 100+ Expert Speakers WaterIntelligence & Wastewater&Monitoring & Analysis Best Practice Skills & Careers Programme New Content Streams

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Raw materials sourcing Supply chain networking 100+ Expert speakers Intelligence & best practice

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10/10/2019 10:36



SouthWestSensor Limited (SWS) has developed novel droplet microfluidic sensors for high frequency and low-cost monitoring of water, waste water and marine environments.

KEY FEATURES • Small footprint • Low power and reagent consumption • High frequency sampling • Reliable & accurate data (error < 10%) • Periodic internal standard calibrations • Real-time data logging • On-board and Cloud data storage options • Supports remote monitoring and control • Low maintenance with user replaceable reagent cartridge (1-3 months) ADDITIONAL FEATURE: • Water temperature sensor

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To advertise contact David Lancaster on 0191 580 5476 or email for more information


Utlility Security and Incident Management

The difficulties of managing a response in the water industry Managing a response for water companies can be fraught with an assortment of complications and considerations. Here, Chris Ramsbottom, Head of Operational and Technical Support in Adler and Allan’s environmental consultancy division, takes a look at the issues a spillage can throw at those tasked with its containment and clean-up.

By Chris Ramsbottom Some of the many difficulties when responding to an incident for the water industry chime with the reputational challenges facing the utilities. There seems to be increasing concern among the public about water companies, who can be perceived as being supported by billpayers and government subsidies, alongside a focus on ‘bad news stories’. The truth is that they must fulfil a range of important services, including providing clean drinking water and dealing with wastewater, having taken over ageing infrastructure that was out-of-date and overworked when the sector was privatised in 1989. Water companies have made huge advances since then, including improvements in the quality of the drinking water supply, water courses and beaches as well as driving efficiencies in handling waste waters. Prior to privatisation, the water industry had been neglected and there was, quite simply, no effective national environmental agenda. Some £130 billion has been invested into improvements over the last three decades. As a result, the country’s drinking water is now world-class; improvements in network

leakages have been seen; and two thirds of the UK’s beaches were classed as ‘Excellent’ in 2018, when only one third of the UK’s beaches achieved a comparable standard in 1990. Many rivers, which were considered to be biologically dead waterways, are now flourishing ecosystems. They have seen a return to pre-industrialised biodiversity, hallmarked by re-colonisation with animals, including otters and sensitive fish species, and with many plants that were absent for decades. However, despite programmes of continual infrastructure improvement, legacy issues mean that burst pipes, leaks and wrongly connected pipework do occur. And these can lead to contamination by sewage that should be kept out of our natural water courses. Looking to the future, there is increasing focus on the environmental impacts of water companies’ operations. In preparation for AMP7, the PR19 draft determinations published in July 2019 highlight an expected 34% reduction in pollution incidents in England by 2024-25. The figure is expected to be 37% in Wales.

What are the challenges?

One major challenge is to accurately assess the impact of an incident.


Different systems are in use in different regions of the UK but for example in England the Environment Agency uses the Common Incident Classification Scheme (CICS) to classify the impacts or effects of pollution incidents. The scheme ranges from Category 4 (no impact) to Category 3 (minor or minimal impact), Category 2 (significant) and ultimately Category 1 (major, serious, persistent and/or extensive). Under the scheme any spillage or discharge of noxious, poisonous or polluting matter to surface waters or groundwater is presumed by the regulator to have an impact (i.e. at least a Category 3) and it is the responsibility of the operator to prove otherwise. In certain circumstances Category 2 may be assumed, for example a release of sewage causing a beach to be closed or partially closed. Of course, it is imperative to quickly establish the true picture since, should an incident prove to be more severe, an efficient emergency clean-up response can swing into action to prevent widespread, lasting harm. The inherited problems associated with ageing infrastructure are acknowledged, however, recent events suggest that there is a growing appetite for penalising companies with increasingly larger fines and firms may also be prosecuted if the clean-up operation can’t restore an ecosystem to its natural state.


Utlility Security and Incident Management

Aside from the environmental and financial implications, the reputations of those involved and the sector as a whole can be harmed. Fortunately, when our technicians are called in to investigate, their samples often reveal that a spill is actually far less serious than initially feared and an accurate risk assessment dials it back to the true Category. We can coordinate the wider response. Given the intense scrutiny that the water utilities are under, an essential element of the mix when doing so is transparency and effective communications. Emergency response organisations like ours must have utmost sensitivity to the public’s concerns about spill incidents, especially those of nearby residents and businesses and other employers. Conscious that our visibility on the ground makes us the water company’s ambassador, there must always be a willingness to engage and inform individuals, organisations and the media alike. Local stakeholders are important, and they are entitled to know all about a pollution incident on their patch, how it is being tackled and how impact has been minimised. We must also be able to advise fully on clients’ specific spill prevention measures and the general risk reduction programmes undertaken. Another challenge is that we never know where or when an incident will happen. It is possible to estimate how many might occur in a year by studying previous rates and factoring in the extent of improvements made recently, then marshal sufficient resources as a result, but real life always throws up the unexpected. The speed of response is critical to containing and minimising the impacts of an incident and so we must have sufficient, suitably capable, fully equipped teams on constant standby distributed across the UK to respond safely to any incident nationwide. Considering that access to water courses isn’t always easy and incidents can occur in remote areas, as well as in locations with good transport links, this is a daunting enterprise. A key part of a fast response is quick notification and the challenge here is for water companies and other stakeholders to have reliance on a system that enables rapid notification. Notifying the responder directly will minimise delay.

At a spill site, we must quickly establish the impacts of the incident including the source of the pollution, how it got there and where it’s going. This complex task can involve liaising with multiple different authorities, regulators, neighbours and other stakeholders and it isn’t always immediately clear who all these should be. Invariably we are the first line of contact. Navigating all these groups and the attendant regulations they (and thus, we) must adhere to in the tracing, containment and clean-up, must be done properly and speedily. This is helped by our well-established relationships with all agencies and the credibility we benefit from as a result. An indication of the effectiveness of our approach is that we have dealt with thousands of incidents in the water industry as first responder without a single client being prosecuted.

A proactive spend is always lower than a reactive one

There are numerous challenges involved in managing water incident responses, but none are insurmountable and having a good support network is critical. Naturally, it would be better not to have incidents in the first place. Proactive

environmental risk management surveys can anticipate what could cause a future incident, what could be harmed and how, and what mitigation measures may help to prevent the incident from occurring. But should an incident still happen, we will be more familiar with the location and its surroundings. While the total avoidance of incidents can never be guaranteed, a proactive spend is always lower than a reactive one, even before you factor in reputational costs, insurance premium hikes and financial levies imposed by regulators. Adler and Allan is the UK’s largest spill response organisation with a comprehensive range of services for every emergency. Providing emergency cover 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, we have brought together a number of specialisms for the water industry under our refreshed brand, including environmental risk assessment audits. As the market-leading environmental risk reduction and clean-up specialist, the utilities and their partners can rest assured that our knowledge of them and their sector makes us an indispensable partner for completely resolving any incident fast, without compromises.

An indication of the effectiveness of our approach is that we have dealt with thousands of incidents in the water industry as first responder without a single client being prosecuted.


Happy Birthday dear digdat… Utility mapping solution digdat, turns 20 this year. To celebrate, company director Kevin Brown reflects back on the last two decades delivering online solutions to the utilities industry. When digdat was born 20 years ago, not one of us anticipated how revolutionary a utilities mapping solution could be. Enabling better communication and improved customer service between utility companies and their customers is the name of the game. But digdat has gone on to evolve much further – providing a service where customers can report and upload any issues directly with their water supplier and a portal for the wholesale market to talk straight to their retail customers. Whatever the application, the goal is the same: clear, accurate and timely updates.

digdat Utilities, where it all began... Originally, digdat’s now unique technology was designed to solve a very specific problem – keeping people safe from asset strikes. Historical utilities mapping was just that – historical. Often out of date paper maps


were kept in central locations, making them inaccessible and often inaccurate. The initial brief for digdat services sounded simple – update all the Anglian Water information on its infrastructure and operational boundaries and instead of using paper maps, they would be uploaded onto the web. The reality was a huge undertaking. Anglian Water alone has enough water pipeline to go to Australia and back again and enough sewer pipe to go around the world twice. But there were great efficiencies to be made not only in the accessibility of being able to look at maps from anywhere, but in the ability to more accurately dig a hole in the right place! Throwback to 1999, when digdat started its journey. “Getting online” involved complicated configurations and while dial-up connections were slow and clunky, they were the only

affordable way for people to access the web. There were no smart phones or tablets and digdat was the only online service of its kind in the UK. It’s hard to believe but we even provided paper copies of maps to customers, using large plotters and printers.

20 years on…

Fast forward 20 years and now, the technology world is in a completely different (cyber) space, with cloud services, high speed internet access and demands for 24/7 services on multiple devices. The digdat solution has seen many upgrades and developments to keep up to speed with industry changes and technological advances, but it continues to provide an essential service to utility companies throughout Great Britain and has expanded its services significantly. Not only does digdat hold information about all the statutory boundaries for all water


Wastewater Treatment & Technology

companies, but data for gas, electric, local council and communications utilities too.

social media, it can reduce calls to customer services and improve customer engagement.

Today, digdat Utilities has over 8,000 active users of the service, including 100 utilities, 400 local authorities and 500 contractors, providing 24/7 access to multi-utility underground assets. Over 3.5m maps are streamed, viewed and printed every year, and this is forecast to increase to over 5m per year in 2020.

Last year alone, it was used to send over one million notifications, keeping customers informed on incidents relevant to them.

digdat Connect

After digdat Utilities, digdat Connect was the next service launched in 2013. A completely free solution to make life easier for anyone who needs to look up which utility companies and councils are responsible in a given area.

In 2019 the service is still advancing, with the addition of the “Report a Leak” functionality, which enables locations to be pinned and photos to be uploaded by customers. 2019 also saw the launch of the first ever fully bi-lingual version of the solution for Welsh Water.

digdat’s Retailer Notification Service

Most recently came the addition of the Retailer Notification Service (RNS). The system was devised alongside the opening of the water retail market. RNS helps water wholesalers communicate with new water retailers regarding service issues. Using an intuitive online system, it provides a live view of disruptions or incidents that have the potential to impact non-household customers. It provides a structure to manage communication to and from retailers and enables a high volume of notifications to be effectively managed in one place, nationally. Two years on and 70% of retailers have access to RNS with more coming online every day.

The next 20 years

The solution is simple and easy to use and has all the necessary links and contacts for users to be able to get in touch with relevant organisations in a timely fashion.

‘In Your Area’ Communication Service

In 2015, digdat identified an opportunity to help utility companies improve their customer communications and the ‘In Your Area’ service was born. ‘In Your Area’ is a hosted, white labelled information service that enables organisations to both send and receive realtime service notifications through a website. Fully integrated with messaging, emails and

digdat has seen a huge growth in demand for its services, particularly over the last five years. The focus on providing excellent customer service has really moved to the next level within the utility industry. As a result, water and energy companies are seeking out solutions to ensure they are communicating more effectively, accurately and efficiently with customers. Companies like Anglian Water - who have recently been voted number one in the water industry for customer serviceare continually looking for new ways to keep improving their standards. The need to continually improve, evokes innovation which can only help propel customer service to a whole new level and digdat will continue to evolve to meet those needs in the future.

Kevin Brown Managing Director

Kevin was responsible for the creation of the digdat business back in 1999 and today, enjoys looking back on how far the business has come in the last twenty years. Initially, the business was set up to provide a solution enabling Anglian Water to give Local Authorities the ability to view the location of sewer pipes and provide utilities & utility contractors (needing to dig in the ground), with 24/7 access to asset maps of water pipes and sewers. The service ensured compliance with the New Roads & Street Works Act (NRSWA) and helped improve health & safety in the industry. digdat was the first online system of its kind and soon gained interest from other water and utility companies. Over the last twenty years Kevin has grown the business, working with the industry to deliver new initiatives and systems to support better two-way communications between utility companies and their customers. Kevin began working for the Anglian Water Group in 1991, rolling out the first desktop computer infrastructure for the water company and developing software & IT solutions. In 1997, Kevin was appointed Technical & Operations Director of a newly formed commercial business focussing on Geographic Information Systems (GIS), utility consultancy services and conveyancing searches. Just two years later digdat was born. Prior to joining the Anglian Water Group, Kevin served in the British Army focussing on communications, intelligence and IT. Today, Kevin is the Managing Director of TIDE Services, responsible for the strategic growth and development of three businesses, including digdat. Kevin is also Director and Chair of the Drainage & Water Searches Network.



London sewer upgrade award win Thames Water has won a top engineering award for an innovative £20 million upgrade of a Victorian sewer in central London. The state-of-the-art King’s Scholars’ Pond project did not cause any delays on the roads above or tube below, while the 1850s tunnel also remained in full wastewater operation throughout. The ‘keyhole engineering’ scheme, which was completed earlier this year, was awarded the title of Operations & Maintenance Project of the Year at the British Construction Industry Awards on October 9. Asad Hanfi, Thames Water project manager, said: “This was one our most challenging sewer repairs ever, so it’s fantastic that this award recognises the hard work and efforts of everyone involved. “We took the pieces of a giant 3D jigsaw underground through a hole no wider than the wheel of a van, and pieced it all together to reinforce the existing brickwork and improve the resilience of the sewer for more than another century. “Doing it this way did not impact on the busy roads or trains, and we saved money and significantly reduced pollution by not using large mechanical diggers. It was better for the environment, better for our customers and it kept London moving.” The brick sewer, buried two metres under the junction of Baker Street and Marylebone Road,


but on top of the Hammersmith and City tube lines, needed repairs to extend its life well into the 22nd century. The answer, and to avoid travel disruption in one of the capital’s busiest areas, included a stainless steel bridge and liner being constructed off site, dismantled and rebuilt inside the sewer, after being lowered one piece at a time through a narrow manhole. The steel

structure does not require any maintenance while the reinforced resin liner can be removed a panel at a time to allow the original Sir Joseph Bazalgette brickwork to be inspected as normal. All that could be seen above ground were three small fenced off areas of pavement to allow safe access through the manhole and to store equipment.


digdatÂŽ Communications is a business solution designed for organisations operating 24/7 maintenance and emergency repair schedules. It enables asset owners and service providers to communicate live service information and potential disruptions, as well as facilitating in-bound reporting of problems.

Information is power Find out more at

Please call Customer Services on 0800 085 8060 or email


Smooth operations â&#x20AC;&#x201C; planning for onsite treatment success Tightening environmental standards and the rising cost of tankering wastewater mean more and more industrial process companies are taking control of their own treatment systems. WPL technical director Andrew Baird has advice for ensuring wastewater projects go smoothly and that the right system is put in place. Many industrial process companies who have opted for onsite treatment facilities have had their fingers burned by badly planned and delivered projects. WPL specialises in package wastewater treatment plants and, like many other equipment providers, is being asked for extra assurances that its treatment systems will work. Operational costs associated with industrial effluent are not always fully appreciated and a lot of customers get a shock when they look at their return on investment. It is really important to fully understand what the cost will be, before you can decide if it is a viable option. Chemicals and power consumption costs are often underestimated, as are variables like sludge production rates. If more sludge is produced than expected, storage facilities may not have the necessary capacity and tankering


costs could rise. Also it is important to match the size of sludge storage to the size of the tankers that can access the site to remove it. And remember to budget for labour costs. It is necessary to think carefully about how much labour is required for an industrial system. If you install a DAF [dissolved air flotation] system, you will probably need an operator on site who can intervene if the system fails or is at least on site every day. Have you incorporated this cost into your planning? Oversights like this are common and commercial failures occur because people have not thought about the investment upfront and have not done their homework.

Testing and piloting are key

Discrepancies between designs and the delivery of a project can be avoided by conducting detailed reviews and pilots before

building a permanent solution. Put simply, you need to know that what has been designed is going to work in real time and fits in with the level of training your employees have had. We would start with a lab scale review to sample and test the effluent to get the correct dosing regime, before we get to an estimated cost for the project. After the lab work, we would strongly recommend a reasonably sized pilot trial. This allows us to really look closely at things like chemical, power consumption and sludge production giving a very accurate indication of how the plant will operate and the out-turn costs. WPLâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s own pilot plants can be hired with trained operators, or training can be given and operated by site. As the plant doubles as emergency hire, it is designed for ease of installation and operation. Biological processes need to be installed for at least 12



weeks, though they are sometimes in place for months or even years. The longest pilot we had in place was for three years. On one occasion the kit worked so well, the company wanted to use it permanently. One of WPL’s more recent projects was at a winery in Norfolk, which saw the development of an onsite biological treatment plant, following a successful 10-month trial. The winery routinely tankered wastewater offsite for treatment but can now treat a maximum 100m3/day, for discharge to sewer network. The pilot successfully demonstrated that the effluent could be biologically treated to the required standard, even though its composition can fluctuate widely. The pilot plants are easy to install and they do tend to work well, allowing for lots of variations and tweaking. That helps develop the full-scale design, so we can come up with a proposal and a fixed price. Every onsite treatment facility should be piloted first. Yes, pilots are expensive but they will save you money in the long run. I would not do an industrial application without having a trial.

Do your research

Many projects have been hampered by poor quality kit. You get what you pay for. I’ve seen

dewatering systems stop working after a month and some equipment mothballed when the operational complexities or ongoing costs are realised. A lot of it comes down to manufacturing, or people over-selling the technology into inappropriate applications, so think carefully before going ahead with purchasing. Get hard facts and data upfront and get advice and recommendations. Look for tried and tested equipment, with good customer reviews. Don’t be tempted to buy off-the-shelf as all sites differ and one piece of equipment does not fit all. Speak to people who’ve operated it. When it comes to wastewater treatment, you do not want to be the first company to try a brand new piece of kit. You are going to be spending a lot of money, anything from £5,000 to £150,000 or even a million, so you have to be careful and really do your homework.

Handle with care

Maintenance is of course essential, once the unit is up and running, but problems can occur due to a lack of operating knowledge. People do not always read the operating and maintenance manuals and they do not send staff on the training sessions we set up. Perhaps they do not view training as important, but it really is. Operators need that

knowledge. Some of these pieces of kit are really specialist. Unrealistic expectations of what an onsite unit can handle can also lead to failures. There are incorrect assumptions of what a piece of kit will do, or what it can handle. The only thing that should go into wastewater treatment sites is wastewater, nothing else. No hair nets, tin cans, plastic cable ties or packaging materials. We find all sorts of things wrapped round pumps – it could be that people lift up the gridding to dispose of things quickly. Education and ongoing training would really help prevent equipment and processes breaking down.”

Look to the future

Your new onsite treatment facility might meet required environmental and trade effluent standards now but will it in the future? Building in future-proofing, especially legislative, is a difficult thing to do as you can’t guess the future. You can assume that as pressure increases on the sewer network, the water company will increase charges, set stricter discharge standards or possibly stop industry going to its sewer. Ask the question of your supplier – what is the next step in treatment? At some point in the future could I reuse this valuable resource?


Biosolids & Recycling

THAT’S THE POWER OF POO! David Hartley explains how Anglian Water is generating enough energy from its combined heat and power (CHP) plants to run a town the size of Lowestoft for a year. Last year was a record year for combined heat and power (CHP) in the world of Anglian Water – England’s largest water company by geographical area. The supplier of water to nearly five million customers in the East of England celebrated its highest ever yield of energy from poo power to date, producing 107,515MWhs of electricity. Not only would this be enough to send Marty McFly Back to the Future nearly 80 times, it is also enough to supply 27,000 properties with power for an entire YEAR. So far, 2019 has seen Anglian’s 10 CHP plants achieve their most productive six months yet, with the highest ever monthly yield of 10.4GWh reached in April.

The Benefits

The record-breaking year for the water company meant that the power generated in 2018/19 avoided emissions of more than 32,700 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) – the equivalent of taking 10,000 cars off the road. The production of electricity also created a cost benefit of £8.79million by allowing the company to offset the energy used to power its onsite operations. The use of renewables provided Anglian with the opportunity to sell the excess electricity produced to local networks, with enough surplus energy to power 7,200 homes for a year.

The company has been using the technology since 2008, but in 2014 there was a step change when Anglian Water set up a dedicated team to take over from contractors and started running the operation and maintenance of the plants in-house. Graham Powell, CHP Manager, said: “We’re producing more energy from the same amount of sludge because our teams are taking ownership of the CHP plants and keeping on top of maintenance. “We’re working collaboratively to carry out maintenance work on CHP engines at the same time as work is done on the Sludge Treatment Centre, so we have less downtime, and we divert sludge to other plants during maintenance to make sure it isn’t wasted. “Projects like this are helping to reduce our reliance on traditional energy sources, something we believe a 21st century water company should be doing more of, and it’s something our customers told us they want to see too.”

But…how does it work?

CHP – or Poo Power as it is sometimes affectionately known – is the process of creating power from the treatment of sewage sludge, a by-product of the water recycling process. The sludge is treated in specialised vessels – a process known as anaerobic digestion – to

high temperatures to kill off harmful bacteria, meaning what’s left behind can then be used as a soil conditioner in agriculture. “The figures are the result of a greater focus on the performance and maintenance of the end-to-end process from sludge treatment to energy generation, collaborative working and improvements in sludge management,” Graham continued. Through changing the way water recycling centres are managed, with dedicated teams of technicians to monitor and enhance performance, the company has been able to achieve a threefold increase in the amount of energy produced over the last five years. Since forming the in-house team, Anglian have helped to set up a water-industry specific “CHP User Group” as a forum for collaboration and shared learning. This has already produced benefits with more efficient trouble shooting and developing methods of best practice within the specialist environment. “This change provides a sound platform to drive innovation by bringing together key subject matter experts with a clear focus on a common goal. It’s vital that the end-to-end

Projects like this are helping to reduce our reliance on traditional energy sources, something we believe a 21st century water company should be doing more of, and it’s something our customers told us they want to see too. 48


Biosolids & Recycling

Anglian Water’s Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant at Great Billing, in Northamptonshire © Matthew Power Photography Group, a collective whose members are committed to addressing their climate impact and ensuring resilience to the ever-increasing effects of climate change.

process is maintained just like a production line. Reliability of the sludge treatment process is vital to the CHP engines, as without the correct sludge feed there won’t be sufficient gas of the right quality to run the engines,” Graham added.

How electricity is generated from sludge

1 Sludge cake is weighed as it comes onto site 2 It is then delivered to the sludge cake building 3 Sludge cake is then mixed with liquid sludge from the Water Recycling Centre then fed into the treatment process 4 Advanced treatment process where sludge is pasteurised and conditioned prior to digestion 5 Sludge is then pumped off site to anaerobic digestion plant 6 Biogas created during anaerobic digestion comes back on site through these pipes 7 Biogas is stored in bags 8 The biogas is used to power four CHP engines, which generate electricity 9 Waste heat from the CHP engines warms up boilers that are used to heat the anaerobic digestion process Peter Joyce, Head of Sludge Treatment, said: “The real catalyst for the change in performance has been the sheer energy and focus put in by the newly formed teams. This is creating new opportunities as the integrated team talk on a daily basis.

“As we’re settling into the new structures, it’s important that we continue to work at the highest level of safety and expand learning, so we have as many people skilled in both treatment processes and sludge treatment as possible. We’ll also be reaching out to other teams within Anglian Water, our alliances and suppliers to help us reach an industry leading position.” Over the past 10 years, Anglian Water has invested £230million to enhance the treatment process at 10 of the region’s largest water recycling centres and enable them to produce renewable energy in this way.

Carbon Conscious

The use of CHP at Anglian isn’t the only carbon-reducing change in the business. The company’s broader renewable energy strategy focuses on minimising the ‘operational’ carbon from its everyday operations, and the ‘capital’ carbon used in building assets such as water mains, sewers and pumping stations. Anglian Water is one of the founding members of The Prince of Wales’ Corporate Leaders

Furthermore, Anglian’s involvement in the industry-wide ‘Public Interest Commitment’ commits Anglian to continuing to deliver wider benefits to society and the environment above and beyond the provision of clean, fresh drinking water and water recycling services. As part of this commitment, a goal for the whole sector is to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030. In order to ensure that the business is operating in the most carbon-savvy way, Anglian have been exploring the use of innovative battery storage, solar power and electric vehicles across the business. Further to this, two years ago, Anglian Water set the benchmark of becoming the first utility to issue a Sterling Green Bond meaning all of the company’s capital investment programme meets the Green Bond Principles of sustainability, environmental performance and carbon reduction.

Looking Ahead

With the public interest and carbon neutrality embedded in the organisation’s strategy, Anglian are hoping to produce more energy year-on-year. The results achieved to date are impressive, but with the company’s ambitions to achieve carbon neutrality, Anglian are aiming even higher by the end of the decade. The success of its CHP programme is an important step in meeting its carbon targets, realising that there really is power in poo.


Biosolids & Recycling

A win-win for the environment and water companies, EloVac®- P, vacuum degassing of digested sludge. ELIQUO is a group of companies operating in the field of municipal water, wastewater and sludge treatment. Together, th­ey provide a comprehensive range of solutions: from EPC contracting in Germany and the Netherlands, to technology licensing and implementation in the UK. In addition, they have developed proprietary sludge technologies, such as EloVac®- P, that provide simple and innovative solutions to the wastewater sector. An interview with Ulrich Knörle

of ELIQUO - the inventor of EloVac®- P.

What is EloVac® - P?

EloVac®- P is the only vacuum degassing technology with simultaneous phosphate precipitation for digested sludge in the market.

What is sludge vacuum degassing and how does it work?

Vacuum degassing is a process where a vacuum extracts residual gas from a media, in this case digested sludge. Anaerobically digested sludge releases residual methane and carbon dioxide to the atmosphere – methane emissions from sludge treatment make up 75% of the diffuse CO2-equivalent emissions (Gärtner 2017). With vacuum degassing, a pump continuously extracts the residual gasses inside a reactor tank for beneficial reuse such as additional biogas/ electricity. The retention time of the sludge in the reactor tank is controlled. The special feature of EloVac®- P is the simultaneous phosphate precipitation in the reactor tank by dosing magnesium chloride directly into the tank.

How did you come up with this idea and what does it mean to you?

ELIQUO is foremost a water solutions company with the goal to provide technologies to the market that preserve natural water resources. For a long time, I worked in the field of anaerobic wastewater treatment. I was always amazed how these tiny anaerobic microorganisms can produce so much gas to generate Megawatts of electricity. The methane in the biogas is a valuable energy source, but it can also be a source of potent greenhouse gas emissions; that is where I started thinking ‘how can a water company contribute to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?’ I had the opportunity to investigate how much gas is still contained in digested sludge, and to my surprise, it was much more than I had expected. The answer was clear: we extract the gas from the liquid to make it available for utilisation without releasing it into the atmosphere. Another problem water companies typically face, particularly those with advanced


digestion, is the elevated phosphate concentration in the digested sludge, which negatively affects the achievable percent solids in the cake after dewatering. Here, we also investigated possibilities to precipitate the soluble phosphate in the sludge to enhance dewatering and increase the quality of the cake. With conventional technologies, enormous tanks are necessary to allow the growth of the precipitates and finally separate the crystals from the sludge. EloVac®- P’s approach is different: precipitation of the phosphate, no growth of the precipitates and no separation of the crystals. The benefits of this approach are unique: very small footprint (50 times smaller reactor tank), positive effect on dewatering, reduction of polymer consumption and no uncontrolled struvite scaling downstream. In addition, because the miniscule struvite crystals remain in the sludge, the quality of biosolids cake improves as a plant available fertiliser for land application. We recently received a nomination for the Environmental Technology Award of the German Federal State of Baden-Württemberg. This is a clear sign that EloVac®- P is on the right track to help address the challenges we are currently facing with climate change and resource efficiency. We also filed for a patent application of the technology earlier this year.

What kind of financial and emissions savings can be achieved? From the aggregated benefits of better dewatering, reduced polymer consumption and additional biogas production; and because of the simplicity and compactness of the system, the payback for water companies can be between one to three years. Moreover, based on our experience with the full-scale implementation in Lingen Germany, plants can expect approximately a 25% reduction in their overall carbon footprint simply by implementing vacuum degassing.

In what type of plants can this system be installed?

Currently, we are focusing on municipal anaerobic sludge digestion. Nonetheless, in addition to the benefits already mentioned, vacuum degassing can also improve the overall sludge digestion process. For example,


one area we are currently investigating is how vacuum degassing can improve sludge density and thus increase digester capacity. Therefore, the benefits are not limited to municipal plants - any type of anaerobic sludge digestion where a certain viscosity of the sludge is not exceeded, can also benefit from vacuum degassing.

In which countries are these systems currently being installed? The first full-scale plant is running at the wastewater treatment plant in Lingen, Germany. Outside of Germany, through our sister companies in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and the United States, the technology will be available, as it has generated a lot of interest. A pilot plant will be available in North America by end of this year. This plant will have a capacity of ca. 20 m³/h, which represents the sludge flow of a municipal wastewater treatment plant with a capacity of ca. 400,000 PE. We are in discussions with various water companies in the UK as well who are interested in piloting the technology, and we are still actively seeking more pilot partners in the UK and across Europe!

For more information about EloVac®- P, please contact Ulrich Knörle: or +49 751 359785-11





Patented THP system for small to mid-size treatment plants.

Vacuum degassing of digested sludge with simultaneous phosphate precipitation

Unique technology based on tube heat exchangers and thermal oil:

No need for aeration or any caustic addition

No steam or chemicals needed

Energy positive, efficient and climate friendly Compact, simple, and completely skid-mounted

System is simple to install, operate and maintain Modular, Plug & Play

Improve dewaterability > 5% with lower polymer consumption

Cleaning in place (CIP) system, no odour emission

Avoids struvite scaling

Flexible configuration based on project requirements.

Reduce direct methane emissions > 90%

Laboratory testing available: Discover your carbon footprint reduction and dewatering savings.

The benefits of THP without steam and without chemicals




ELIQUO HYDROK LTD I T 01726 862000 I



Wastewater Treatment & Technology



Wastewater Treatment & Technology

Challenging Treatment Challenges Things can only get better so it’s said…... For the UK water industry this has meant the need to produce better effluent quality, with an expectation of lower customer prices. New means of carrying out treatment works evaluations and optioneering improvements have the potential for step changes in making choices for the long term benefit of our environment within acceptable cost limitations. WRc is shaping the future in this area by collaborating with other innovative organisations to provide opportunities to link skills of scientific evaluation and modelling to those of practical engineering design and construction. The UK water industry is rising to both environmental and cost challenges. Submissions made by the utilities in England and Wales to OFWAT for AMP7 recognise their role in meeting the challenges in the UK Government’s 25 year Environmental Plan. Specifically the Water Industry National Environmental Plan (WINEP) describes a range of measures to achieve particular objectives by 2025. The expectation is that investments must be sustainable to achieve long term environmental improvements, enabling natural resilience for the future. The WINEP database shows many proposed changes to discharge consents for all wastewater businesses. The most significant are to phosphorus consents, but also include changes to ammonia, BOD, and other determinands for large and small works. Many are for new or significantly more stringent discharge quality consents. For the wastewater businesses key drivers continue to be compliance, efficiency and the most effective use of current infrastructure and WRc has always been at the forefront of this thinking. Challenges include growing populations and public interest in minimising environmental impacts and health impacts and social impacts. Much of the potential for improvement stems from incremental changes to existing operations and sites due to substantial existing structures and location requirements…. Water only gravitates downhill! But changes can be made through better understanding current performances and the potential for better monitoring and control, on-site, remotely and on-line. The WINEP database shows 908 phosphorus schemes, with requirements to achieve a

range of discharge consents concentration values for phosphorus down to 0.25mgP / l (and a few even lower). A range of solutions including new installations (and potentially new technologies) as well as supplementation of existing systems will be required. As part of the UK Chemical Investigation Programme (CIP) a variety of treatment technologies have been trialled by the EA / UKWIR. Most of the tested processes use tertiary attachment technologies – reed beds with a steel slag aggregate, ferric salt treated effluent applied to sand filters (Dynasand filters), reactive filtration and adsorption (BluePro), coagulation using magnetite and settlement separation (CoMag Evoqua), and enhancing EBPR. The range demonstrates something of the choices that operators will need to consider to achieve new discharge compliance limits. Associated effluent discharge limits for metals can add to the compliance challenge, which may be breached with, for example, poor settlement or tertiary filtration. A good understanding of the most risky parts at a treatment works enables choices to be made in operating the plant, use of new monitoring technologies, or changes and supplementation to existing processes. Trials carried out by WRc on mixing effectiveness showed that it is possible to use process modelling to test the efficiency of an existing dosing system against optimum performance targets, thereby identifying if there is scope for improved dosing. Experience in the USA is that low levels of phosphorus can be achieved with relatively low doses of iron, providing that there is good initial mixing between the wastewater and the iron. New metals are being proposed to precipitate phosphorus, which offer the scope of reducing

the molar dose, reducing the sludge volume, and having better performance across a wider range of alkalinity. The process modelling approach can be used much more widely for overall treatment efficiency improvements. Many wastewater treatment works across the UK are currently operating outside of their design capacity / capability and as a consequence present a significant compliance risk. The cost of replacement or upgrade of these assets using traditional approaches to mitigate this risk may place an excessive demand on capex funding and/or timing of investment. Options to retrofit into, or supplement existing processes, are now routinely considered. For example, for activated sludge processes the IFAS process is seeing greater interest. The MBBR variant was evaluated over 20 years in the UK, but then relegated to a few uses as a roughing process ahead of conventional activated sludge. Now IFAS is being considered for sites where the aim is to increase the biomass contribution without increasing the MLSS or needing major expansion of settling tank capabilities. Bioagumentation is another old process that is returning. In the 1980s / 1990s it was proposed as a means of allowing over-loaded nitrifying plants to add more bacteria to continue to meet the ammonia removal requirements. However, the costs of adding this biomass supplement made the process less economically attractive. A decade ago WRc looked at using means of running ‘breeder’ systems to create the supply of nitrifiers onsite, but did not find a configuration that succeeded. But continued work by others has paid off. Greener Waste Technology


Wastewater Treatment & Technology

are offering a new form of breeder reactor (Biocube) that uses a small tank to produce nitrifiers to bioaugment the main activated sludge units. WRc is working with several water companies and the supplier to evaluate if the new systems have overcome the problems of the past.

with benchmarks becomes a route to choices between evolutionary improvement of performances or replacement or addition of processes. Retrofit technologies and low build / no build solutions have the capability to enhance & extend performance and can offset capex and compliance risk.

Whilst new processes are attractive, making use of new or improved understanding, and replacing old less efficient equipment with new equipment with long life and efficient processes, it is also possible to improve existing processes through performance optimisation. This is where systematic optioneering and comparisons of efficiency

Online measurement is increasing capable of being integrated with process models, either as â&#x20AC;&#x153;black-boxâ&#x20AC;? systems using AI learning to use inputs and outputs measurements and formulate best condition solutions, or process models that include a variety of levels of direct or empirical physico-chemical and biological growth and conversion relationships to produce process outputs from which adjustments to process conditions can be made to assess potential improvement or maintenance of set target compliance conditions. As an example, Murphy Process Engineering, supported by WRc and others has been developing an investigation and evaluation system for existing WwTws. This uses an automated sampling analysis scheme that can be installed at a WwTW and integrating this with a process model of the treatment works based on the WRc STOAT dynamic sewage treatment model. Sampling is carried out continuously using a sample loop demonstrated to accurately reflect the source water, and delivered to instruments set up in a self-contained, fully autonomous package container. WRc has supported Murphy in assessing the scheme and modifying STOAT to exchange data directly with SCADA systems. This system is envisaged as being capable of deployment for a period of weeks at a


site in order to develop base data on a full range of quality determinands. It can be used to take samples from influent, inter-stage process streams or final effluent, and ideally would be used to carry out an intensive survey of a treatment plant. Instead of a few daily composites there are measurements at multiple locations, with a sampling frequency of 30 minutes or better. At the same time as the survey is establishing data that can be used as a basis for comparing performance against various metrics the data is also used to evaluate the performance of closed loop online control. Murphy is using the Hach controllers for aeration and chemical demand control, so that the results will permit an economic evaluation of the benefits of implementing advanced control for the tested sites. For looking at the wider catchment alternative approaches are needed, such as WRcâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s SIMPOL catchment model which permits the inclusion of sewers, CSOs, rivers and sewage works. SIMPOL is currently being used to assess the effects that catchment growth will have on sewage works and the sewer network, and to identify where upgrades are required. The vision 40 and more years ago that it would be possible to predictively model wastewater treatment and impacts on a catchment is steadily becoming more accurately and readily achieved with benefits for our current and future environment, whilst not entailing excessive costs for improvements to wastewater treatment installations. By Richard Addison Head of Treatment Processes


Wastewater Treatment & Technology

Athea to reap social, environmental and economic benefits from state-of-the-art treatment plant The opening of Athea’s new Wastewater Treatment Plant is the equivalent of upgrading from 1970s Ford Cortina to a 2019 Hybrid Electric Vehicle, bringing greatly improved performance and much higher levels of environmental protection. That was the message to members of the local community and elected representatives who joined staff from Irish Water, Limerick City and County Council and contractors for a tour of the newly opened plant in Athea. The new plant, which was developed by Irish Water in partnership with Limerick City and County Council, represents an investment of almost €2m in the local community which will help protect the environment and support ongoing growth and development in Athea. Speaking at the opening event, Minister of State Patrick O’Donovan said the plant would bring very significant benefits to the local community. “I am delighted see this new wastewater treatment plant up and running. This is an important investment which will bring big benefits to Athea now and for many years to come. Athea is a thriving community which has always taken enormous pride in its local environment and heritage through the great work of groups like the Tidy Towns and the Community Council. “The completion of this treatment plant is a further boost to the community after so many years and its commitment to sustainability

and environmental responsibility. The stateof-the art wastewater treatment it provides will protect the River Galey and other local waterways while also ensuring that the infrastructure is in place to ensure Athea can continue to grow and thrive.” Irish Water’s Alan Morrissey explained that the new plant represented a big leap forward in the quality of wastewater treatment. “The original wastewater treatment plant was built in the 1940s and was no longer fit for purpose. Environmental standards have improved a great deal since then, while population growth and lifestyle changes have added to the need for much improved wastewater treatment. This new plant will ensure that wastewater from Athea will be treated to the high standards set out by the Urban Wastewater Treatment Regulations, safeguarding water quality in the River Galey and other local waterways and ensuring the treatment capacity is in place to support growth and development in Athea for years to come. “The old plant provided many years of good service but standards, expectations and technology have moved on and this new system means better performance, higher

safety standards and enhanced environmental protection. That is very good news for the local community.” TES Group Limited and Nicholas O’Dwyer Consulting Engineers were the main parties involved in delivering the project on behalf of Irish Water’s Capital Programmes. Construction got underway in summer 2018 and the new treatment plant was completed and commissioned in recent weeks. The work involved decommissioning the old primary treatment system and building a new wastewater treatment plant, upgrading the existing pumping station and constructing a new 500m rising main from the pumping station to the treatment plant. This project has upgraded and modernised several elements of the wastewater treatment process at the plant. During the site visit, staff from TES Group, Nicholas O’Dwyer Consulting Engineers and Irish Water showed the guests around the plant and explained the complex processes involved in treating wastewater so that it can be returned safely to the environment. A video on how wastewater is treated can be viewed on the Irish Water website at


Wastewater Treatment & Technology

Delivering projects within budget and on programme

C.G.Godfrey Limited have been the authorised distributor of Qua-vac BV’s Vacuflow® technology in the UK since 1987. In the years since they have become the countries leading contractor for the design, installation and maintenance of vacuum sewerage systems. Clients including Anglian Water, Southern Water, Severn Trent Water and Thames Water and a number of other “blue-chip” clients have seen the company construct in excess of forty vacuum sewerage systems from inception to completion and in many cases the systems are still maintained by the company today. New methods of construction and the operating equipment used within the systems have evolved as new technologies have been developed. Initially trenches were excavated with traditional 360° excavator’s this was quickly replaced by the use of road trenches and narrow trenching techniques, which in certain ground conditions, remains in use today. However, with the development of “no-dig” technology and in particular the progress made in improving the accuracy of directional drilling equipment the company adopted this as the principle means of vacuum main installation. Materials such as polyethylene pipe and foam concrete were identified as means


Thames Water Pot Refurbishment - Before

Thames Water Pot Refurbishment - After

of facilitating the new construction methods, the traditional concrete vacuum collection chambers, whilst still used, have now been replaced with polyethylene units with recycled composite covers and frames on most

installations. Both the 63mm and 90mm vacuum interface units are offered in the UK market, these combined with Qua-vac’s renowned ball float activator make the Vacuflow system the most reliable vacuum system on offer today.


Wastewater Treatment & Technology

One scheme recently completed on behalf of Severn Trent Water and its framework partner NMCN was the Salford Priors 101A First Time Rural Sewerage Scheme. Initial project solutions included the utilisation of conventional gravity sewers at depths of up to 7 metres and 4 No. sewerage pumping stations, necessary as a result of the areas undulating terrain. Due to the many significant disadvantages identified with the use of a gravity sewerage system for this application a vacuum sewerage system was proposed as the most effective alternative solution. The projects specific design encompassed approximately 3km of vacuum main, a central vacuum collection and discharge pumping station, 750m of rising main and 640m of gravity sewer capable of serving 50+ properties. Effluent is discharged at a rate of 5-6l/s into Severn Trent Waters wastewater network along School Road, Salford Priors. Vacuflow® Technology was installed to service all properties within the catchment areas. Waste water from each property, or where possible groups of properties drains by gravity to a vacuum collection chamber sited either in the adjacent highway verge or within the property boundary, no chambers are positioned in the highway. Collection chambers are constructed from either polyethylene or precast concrete and are fitted with Hermelock B125 or D400 composite covers and are similar in size to a standard manhole. The vacuum station is the only element requiring an electrical supply. The vacuum station is comprised of a station building containing the MCC and 2 No vacuum pumps, outside is an underground vacuum tank and pump and valve chambers within which 2 No discharge pumps, isolation and non-return valves and flow meter are housed. The systems vacuum pumps run for approximately 2 to 5 minutes per cycle. Once wastewater reaches the vacuum station it is deposited into the vacuum tank where it is then temporarily stored until the tank reaches a predetermined level when the discharge pumps are activated and the wastewater is conveyed through a rising main and gravity sewer to the nearby sewer network on School Road, Salford Priors.


CGG continually seek to challenge project efficiencies by employing innovative technologies. At Salford Priors efficiencies were made to meet budget and programme constraints. To achieve these efficiencies emphasis was placed in “offsite” prefabrication. Prefabrication facilitated the opportunities for reductions in cost and programme duration, whilst also achieving greater control of product quality and eliminated elements of risk to health and safety on the project.

Numerous prefabricated components, including the fully fitted vacuum station building and foundation slab, pumping station and valve chamber were efficiently programmed for ‘just in time’ delivery to ensure only one crane visit was necessary to site the various elements. Hermelock composite covers, either D400 or B125 rated were installed on all collection chambers, made of a polyurethane composite material reinforced with fibre glass these covers offer the following advantages; Light weight Not susceptible to corrosion Watertight seal Bolting system to lock covers Maintenance free Resistant to loading (EN-124 standards) Zero scrap value 25 year guarantee CGG’s preferred method for vacuum main installation is via directional drilling, however ground conditions on site did not permit this option therefore all vacuum mains were, where feasible, installed by the use of a road trencher which facilitated the excavation of narrow trenches, the recycling of road surfacing materials and reduced areas of highway reinstatement. A trencher is a rapid method of excavation, with levels controlled by laser, typically achieving 150-200m of trench per day.

trench. A sand surround and traceable marker tape were then laid over the pipe prior to backfilling. Foamed concrete was used to backfill trenches. Foamed concrete is a highly workable, low density material. Incorporating up to 75% of air, foam concrete is generally self levelling and self compacting thus eliminating the need for compaction and vibration. Permanent asphalt reinstatements were then undertaken. In recent years the company’s vacuum system workload has seen increasing growth in both the maintenance of our own Vacuflow systems and the refurbishment of systems manufactured and installed by our competitors Iseki, flowvac and Rodiger. Clients are now recognising the benefits of regular planned maintenance and the savings it produces, many now engage the company to undertake the annual servicing of their vacuum systems. Other clients Thames Water and Southern Water in particular having witnessed the operation and reliability of the Vacuflow® system have also undertaken the complete refurbishment of other manufacturers systems, with all vacuum interface units and activators replaced with new Qua-vac equipment. The new infrastructure is proving to be far more robust and reliable than the equipment it replaced and is producing better than anticipated cost benefits for them.

Pipes were pre-welded and laid alongside the trench then carefully lowered in onto a sand bed, thus eliminating the need to enter the


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Autopsy reveals Sidmouth fatberg’s dirty secrets

Household cooking fats and hygiene products played a pivotal role in the formation of the giant fatberg found lurking under a Devon seaside town, scientists have revealed. The 64-metre monster – greater in length than the Tower of Pisa – was discovered under The Esplanade in Sidmouth by South West Water, just before Christmas last year. A team of scientists from the University of Exeter were asked to carry out an extensive ‘autopsy’ of the fatberg to try and solve the mystery of how it was constructed, and whether it posed any environmental risks. The scientists were given four samples from the fatberg, each weighing around 10kg, as workers were removing it from the sewer. The team found that the samples they received were mostly made of animal fats – consistent with domestic food preparation – combined with household hygiene products such as wet wipes and sanitary products, as well as natural and artificial fibres from toilet tissues and laundry. Crucially, the team found the fatberg contained no detectable levels of toxic chemicals – meaning its presence in the sewer, while increasing the risk of a blockage, did not pose a chemical or biological risk to the environment or human health. Professor John Love, a Synthetic Biology expert at the University of Exeter and project lead, said: “Analysing the fatberg samples in such a short timeframe was an exciting challenge requiring the expertise from a number of specialised scientists at the University of Exeter. We worried that the fatberg might concentrate fatsoluble chemicals such as those found in contraceptives, contain now-banned microplastic beads from cosmetics and be

rich in potentially pathogenic microbes, but we found no trace of these possible dangers. “We were all rather surprised to find that this Sidmouth fatberg was simply a lump of fat aggregated with wet wipes, sanitary towels and other household products that really should be put in the bin and not down the toilet. The microfibres we did find probably came from toilet tissue and laundry, and the bacteria were those we would normally associate with a sewer.” As well as a straightforward ‘macro’ analysis, where the fatberg samples were melted to see what they revealed – which included incontinence pads, false teeth and sanitary products – the teams also used state-of-the-art equipment to study the fats, particles, fibres and microbiological DNA included in the material. Scientists from the Greenpeace laboratory, based at Exeter’s Streatham Campus, also looked at the chemical composition of the fatberg for their own analysis. The results suggested that the fats found were more in keeping with domestic food preparation than commercial food outlets, while the chemicals were those found in personal care products, rather than pharmaceuticals or pesticides. Crucially, they also found no evidence of harmful viruses or bacteria – offering reassurance given the importance of Sidmouth’s bathing waters to the local community and tourists alike. Nicky Cunningham, Manager for the Centre for Resilience in Environment, Water and Waste,

added: “The results indicate that there isn’t a single contributing factor or demographic responsible for this fatberg coming to being. However, given the environmental risk associated with sewer blockages, we all need to make sure that we aren’t putting the wrong materials down the sink or the toilet.” South West Water’s Director of Wastewater, Andrew Roantree, explained: “Although we deal with around 8,500 blocked sewers every year, the Sidmouth fatberg was by far the largest discovered in our service history. We wanted to learn as much as we could about it, how it was created and what it was made of to help us avoid further fatbergs in future. “The results confirm our suspicions, that fat and non-flushable products such as wipes are the main culprits, and that fatbergs are a consequence of the individual and collective impact that our behaviour has on our environment. “We will be using these results to help us education, inform and change the behaviours of people in terms of what they are putting down the toilet and sink. That’s not just applicable to Sidmouth, but across our region.” Although the Sidmouth fatberg made headlines all over the world, South West Water said that fat can still be seen entering the sewer. Andrew added: “We really do need the help of the people of Sidmouth and the South West to prevent another fatberg forming. Please only flush the 3Ps – pee, paper and poo – down the loo and to dispose of fat, oil and grease in the bin not down the sink.”


Catchment Management

Nature-based solutions: the answer to our prayers? Over the last 30 years, we have seen a transformation in the standards which govern our water industry, with companies radically improving all key aspects of the service they provide customers, including reducing the impact on the environment.

Helena Soteriou

Catchment Initiatives Lead at Thames Water Investment over this period has largely been directed towards more traditional ‘hard’ engineering solutions, tackling issues where they come to fruition rather than addressing problems at source. Of course, there is good reason for this, with water and wastewater companies having direct responsibility for the customers they serve. It has made sense to focus activities which have a proven track record to meeting the needs of the customer and one where water companies can have confidence in delivering a reliable and dependable service.

Riparian trees in the River Evenlode catchment

More recently, investment in catchment management activities has seen an exponential growth over the last two asset management cycles across all water companies. At Thames Water we are now working with well over 300 farmers across 25 river sub-catchments to implement activities which ultimately have a benefit on raw water quality avoiding the need for further investment at our water treatment works. However, these activities are focused at a single water quality issue such as pesticides and driven by the need to meet water framework directive (WFD) regulatory requirements. The opportunity to take a broader perspective and manage the catchment as a whole has rarely been taken.

their head in the sand, will be fully aware of the increasing challenges we are facing. Sir James Bevan painted this picture perfectly in his ‘Jaws of Death’ speech back in March. For us, meeting the demand of an additional 2 million customers living in the Thames Water region by 2045, combined with the impacts of climate change and extreme weather events, is putting the environment and the rivers we depend on under ever more stress. Getting the balance right between delivering an affordable customer service and stewardship of the environment on which we are so dependent needs to become a mainstream activity which can no longer be overlooked when it comes to running a sustainable business.

Yet anyone working in this sector at the moment, unless they have been burying

We have seen a strong and increasing support for catchment management approaches


from stakeholders including landowners, catchment partners and right across the public policy framework. The current Government rhetoric is encouraging the sector to place a greater value on the natural environment and the role of working in partnership to deliver this. Furthermore, this is supported by our regulators, who have set strategic priorities and guidance when it comes to influencing our business planning process. Recognising the environment as a system and tackling multiple issues in partnership is the premise of our ‘Smarter Water Catchments’ initiative. Wherever possible, we will seek to implement solutions which harness natural processes and capitalise on opportunities of greater scope and scale, as we believe that investing in this way will provide further benefits and better value to society and the


Catchment Management

Walthamstow Wetlands

In order to understand the extent of these benefits, it is critical that we develop an evidence baseline of the natural capital available in each catchment, prior to implementing any solutions. Our initial assessments of these three catchments indicate that there is a myriad of challenges to address in the water environment, and depending on the partners’ perspective, a number of viable opportunities to pursue.

The process of river basin planning is a complex one, which is currently under review for the next iteration to be published in 2021. These management plans form the basis of the Water Industry National Environment Programme, which indicate the required environmental standards water companies must meet when delivering their operations. With a finite amount of money available through customers bills and shareholders investment, it is down to each company to determine the most cost-effective way of delivering these standards. This wellestablished framework has led to a plan which aims to improve 745km of river in the Thames basin for the period between 2020-2025.

On paper, nature-based solutions seem like an obvious answer. There are many examples across the UK of how they have demonstrated water quality benefits, supported biodiversity and ecosystem restoration, and delivered value to the communities that experience them. Yet in practice, there is great uncertainty around whether the required environmental standards can be achieved consistently by these ‘softer’ approaches and how the regulatory processes will develop to support them.

Across the south east, these required standards for measures such as Phosphorus reduction at sewage treatment works are some of the tightest in the UK. We have a number of sites which would require permits of between 0.25 and 1mg/l to be established to contribute our fair share to supporting rivers to meet good ecological status. Currently these permits are not flexible and would require solutions which provided certainty that these environmental standards would be met year-on-year (whilst

environment. Thames Water plan to introduce this as a bespoke performance commitment from April 2020 across three diverse river catchments which are representative of the challenges found throughout our region.

also being the most cost-effective option). Moreover, these standards are considerably tighter than nature-based solutions have been demonstrated to achieve to date. Getting to a stage where we have complete confidence that nature-based solutions can achieve these required standards, even in combination with a more traditional assetbased approach, is still someway off under the current framework; it requires robust evidence which often favours investment towards more traditional ‘hard’ engineering approaches, even if they were cost-effective. Making a stepchange towards these solutions, as a direct replacement, is currently neither feasible nor fit for purpose. As outlined in Sir James’ speech, the clock is ticking down and we are fast approaching these projections which have influenced so many of our long-term plans. We need to rethink as an industry how we best influence this framework to support nature-based solutions and fully recognise the natural capital potential that they have to offer our river catchments.


Delivering Resilience

The Wessex Water Innovative Re-Rounder After the implementation of the transfer of private drainage to Wessex Water in 2011, it became imperative that we focus more attention on trenchless alternatives for repair of small diameter sewers. Our overall cumulative volume of public sewers doubled overnight from 17,000km to 34,000km, and the majority of that transferred stock was 150mm diameter. Julian Britton I Eng MICE, Critical Sewers Manager, Wessex Water explains the process. Wessex Water established their Critical Sewers Team in Sept 2004 at Kingston Seymour in Somerset, with the primary purposes of reducing the cost of sewer renovation interventions, using trenchless technologies where possible and mitigating the impact of our necessary works upon customers and commuters.


As a W&Sc we attract innovators who often wish to consult us and ask for advice at concept stage, where we are able to explain how products may, or may not, fit our modus operandi. We also benefit from fully developed solutions introduced by inventors or contractors etc, but that leaves an area where we recognise an internal need, for which there

is no obvious and available solution. This was the case for the structural reformation of deformed sewers.

A greater understanding of CIPP

Wessex Water adopted the concept of renovating sewers by way of Cured in Place Pipelining (CIPP) in 1984, defined in the WRc


Delivering Resilience

The traditional options would have been to either:

The Re-Rounder Sewer Renovation Manual as a Type II lining, a British invention patented by Eric Wood, the founder of Insituform Technologies. Our early designs utilised the methodology of the SRM but, by 2005 we had adopted the American ASTM F1216 method of CIPP lining design, opting for the more conservative ‘Fully Deteriorated’ (FD) condition set out in the document. In those early days at Kingston engineers followed the iterative and periodic development of F1216, but never lost sight of the caveat that polyester resin liners suffer time dependent creep under load. We recognised that special precautions should be applied for resultant thickness’ of liners beyond a host pipe deformation >10% of diameter. Our calculations for the FD liners, which take into account the hydrostatic and geostatic loadings acting upon the pipe, as well as vehicular surcharge loads, proved that at around 20% deformation on diameter; the thickness of the liner doubles, dependent upon the ‘Declared’ mechanical properties of the liner composition. That increase in liner thickness further reduces the hydraulic capacity of the host sewer in its deformed state, which is already compromised by the presenting pipe deformation. Consequently, if we were able to reform the sewer pipe to its original circularity, we would reduce the liner thickness required to hold the damaged pipe, therefore saving on resin and liner thickness, and the ability to restore our flow characteristics.

The Re-Rounder

In 2012, colleagues in our Small Schemes Team were presented with a limited length of sewer with a 20% deformation in a 375mm diameter sewer in a ‘running’ sand geology, on the south coast of England. When excavating down, they found the original trench supports from the 1930s which obviously could not be removed at that time. Small Schemes had to chase the defect for 15m metres, costing some £200k. If we had had a device to re-round the sewer it would have been so much more cost affective and beneficial all round. Development commenced on such a machine, a cut out of which is shown above. It represents a simple ram with linkage to transfer the hydraulic thrust of the piston, to five number metal ‘shoes’. The Re-Rounder (RR) was constructed to pass beneath any defect with a diameter deformation <23%. The rationale has been to use the laser on our inhouse CCTV cameras to measure the freeboard available, and establish if the RR can pass

The RR deployed in sewer

The RR mobilised to the pipe intrados

beneath, the limiting diameter is that across the width of the wheel sets. The device then operates and lifts itself into the centre of the pipe, and whilst the shoes seat in the invert section, the upper shoes push the pipe outward to reform the circularity of the pipe. The shoes have a cumulative force of 70 KN and this has been found capable of lifting all of the types of settled overburden encountered so far. Unless we are in a hydraulic sand, as mentioned above, we are likely to only lift the settled bedding/backfill material in the shape of a ‘church window’. This represents the ‘Pressure Arch Theory’ for compacted materials, which comes in to play, where the geology becomes self-supporting as it transfers its forces, allowing an arch to form. The problem then becomes the instability of the host pipe as the RR is retracted. This is dealt with by deploying a ‘Stent’ made of stainless steel some 1.2mm thick, which remains in place until we can line over the defect with a full length liner (CIPP), or a spot repair (CIPR). The laser cut shells have a series of ‘V’ shaped ties between full metal strips, which expand as the shell is forced outward, becoming a shallower configuration. There is also a slight crimp in the solid metal strip sections, again a shallow ‘V’ shape, which ‘bites’ into the intrados surface of the host pipe. This provides additional anchorage for the stent should we wish to clean the sewers prior to lining. Flow in the sewer can continue at all times during installation.

Typical deployment at Malmesbury, Wiltshire

A 50m section of sewer ranging from 1-3m deep in a narrow street, Abbey Row, Malmesbury presents a typical example of where major advantages can be identified. The length of sewer had SRM grade 5 and 4 defects, with four of the grade 5’s points exhibiting > 20% deformation, some at 3 m in depth. The local Highways Dept of the Council could only allow us a weekend to renovate the sewer.

Laser survey to establish passage of RR

Line the sewer over the major defects and accept the structural integrity of the liner would almost certainly have been compromised by the greater bending moments in the liner and the liner would have a reduced longevity; Excavate down on the sewer to replace the four most defective sections, which would mean four teams working for two days and accepting a liner passage on the second day as they backfilled. However, the RR was used to reconstruct the pipe as detailed above, with all four stents placed in 90 minutes, which allowed the CIPP lining to proceed, with a normal 3mm thick liner as opposed to 6mm required by an FD design and 20% deformation. The cost of the RR intervention represented a 95% saving over open cut costs for the four points under consideration.


This new innovation available to us reinforces our continued commitment to reduce our carbon foot print, which has been calculated as 95% less than conventional open cut. Over some 30Km of sewer renovation last year, we avoided 125,000 tonnes of excavated muck away to tip, and a corresponding volume of imported bedding, backfill and black top. That equates to 250,000 tonnes of material transit avoided, and removed some 25,000 lorry movements from our customers streets, increasing safety for all. The Re-Rounder has been awarded the following accolades since its launch within Wessex Water earlier this year: Institute of Water National Innovation Award 2019, Belfast; Institute of Water South West Innovation Award 2019; UKSTT Innovative Product Award 2019, Bristol; UKSTT Renovation Water & Wastewater Award 2019, Bristol; UKSTT Project of the Year Award 2019, Bristol. Wessex Water Best Innovation Award 2019

RR stent post installation


Delivering Resilience

Delivering resilience Business intelligence delivered through geographic information systems (GIS) is helping water companies throughout the UK make significant improvements across operations, both in the office and out in the field. Location is the common denominator that connects disparate data and resources, providing utilities with insight and a timely understanding of their, incidents, infrastructure, resources and customers. Water companies are extending their field operations with applications that incorporate geographical context. These applications are revolutionising traditional processes and enabling new possibilities to improve collaboration between colleagues in the office and those out in the field, who are planning and delivering work. The same information can be accessed by anyone, anywhere on any device, allowing more robust, timely, evidencebased decisions to be made. One company leading the field in the provision of GIS is Esri, the largest provider of GIS systems in the world. In the UK alone, 80% of the water industry use Esri software capabilities, whilst across the globe, over 9,000 water utility companies utilise their mapping, visualisation and analytics tools. “With a wide range of applications, Esri software can be simply configured to help plan targeted work, so resources are directed where they’re needed most, in turn driving business efficiency improvements,” explains Craig Hayes, Head of Critical National infrastructure at Esri. “Tabular data in a spreadsheet simply can’t enhance operations in the same way, as it doesn’t provide the spatial perspective critical to maintaining infrastructure networks. This can only be achieved through GIS. Esri provides this context through tools to support mapping and spatial reasoning, enabling resources with the capabilities required for the task, to be targeted where they’ll have the greatest impact.” “Quickly, and at a relatively low cost, water companies can facilitate improved

business outcomes by using Esri software. Many facets of the water industry can be improved, from monitoring water quality to incident management, environmental management, maintenance scheduling, managing field operations and long-term investment plans.” Customers can be served better too, as water companies can harness real-time information to provide timely service updates about what is going on around the network, when and where. Behavioural change can also be brought about with Esri software. A good case in point is Thames Water, who utilised Esri solutions to tackle their costly fatberg crisis. Every year around 80,000 blockages are cleared from its underground sewerage network, 40% of which are caused by congealed fat, oil and grease (FOG). The blockages cost Thames Water around £1 million a month to clear, so preventing these blockages from forming was a priority. Investigations indicated that a significant proportion of the FOG waste in Thames Water’s network was emanating from 43,000 restaurants and food retailers in and around London and the Thames Valley. As a result, an education programme was launched to make these food businesses aware of their legal obligations and to encourage them to dispose of their FOG more responsibly. Ensuring a consistent approach, collecting supporting data and monitoring the progress of this programme was vital – but how could this best be achieved?

A complete, end-to-end process was created using Esri’s out-of-the box-functionality. The locations of fatbergs and flooding incidents were analysed, identifying hotspots to target education initiatives. Investigators made initial and follow-up appointments, using Esri’s mobile applications to record their visits; while back in the office, holistic progress was analysed using Esri’s Operations Dashboard. The efficient collection of accurate data has yielded promising results, increasing the adoption of correct FOG disposal practices, with reductions in sewer clearance costs anticipated, despite the programme being in its early days. Thames Water’s not alone in realising the benefits of ArcGIS in bringing about behavioural change. Anglian Water has also employed the software in its ‘Keep it Clear’ campaign to help prevent sewer blockages. Together these programmes are enabling water companies to deliver a more robust infrastructure through focussed preventative work. All in all, the rich geographical information and off the shelf capabilities provided by Esri allows water companies to identify emerging problems quickly and to mitigate for more serious problems that could arise. Customers benefit from a better service and business improvements are galvanised. Visit or contact Craig Hayes, Head of Critical National Infrastructure for Esri UK on 01296 745599 or

The ArcGIS-based interactive map supports our customer service vision by making it as easy as possible for customers to interact with us via the communication channel of their choice. Wessex Water



Delivering Resilience

ArcGIS is an important tool that is helping us to change behaviour and reduce the amount of fat that is discharged into Londonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sewers. Lauren Makowski, Network Protection Manager, Thames Water



160th anniversary of Katrine Aqueduct marked with Queen Victoria re-enactment The 160th anniversary of the Katrine Aqueduct, one of Scotland’s most important pieces of infrastructure, was marked with a special re-enactment of its official inauguration by Queen Victoria. Actors donned Victorian attire and a modernday lookalike ‘Queen Victoria’ followed in the footsteps of the monarch and repeated her words close to the very spot, on the south shore of picturesque Loch Katrine, where she opened the mega-structure on October 14, 1859. The aqueduct, which takes water from the loch to treatment works that supply 1.3 million people in Glasgow and west central Scotland and is a key part of Scottish Water’s network, was built in the Victorian era to help transform the health of citizens and it continues in full use to this day. Its importance to Scotland, and its stature as one of the world’s greatest feats of engineering of its day, were celebrated when the modernday ‘Queen Victoria’ stood above the entrance to the aqueduct near Stronachlachar where thousands of people, dignitaries and workers who had built the aqueduct gathered to watch history be made in 1859. The commemoration of the official opening today included three special public sailings of the vessels the SS Sir Walter Scott and the Lady of the Lake by the Steamship Sir Walter Scott Ltd from Trossachs Pier to Stronachlachar. During the sailings, the actors portraying Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, and members of the Forest Theatre Company from Gartmore dressed in period costume, gave interactive performances and told passengers


about the history and heritage of the area and the aqueduct. Billy Petrie DL OBE, Chair, Sir Walter Scott Steamship Trust, said: “We are delighted to be hosting these special sailings, and the reenactment with ‘Queen Victoria’ at the Katrine Aqueduct, to commemorate such a hugely important occasion in the history of Glasgow. “Apart from being a very beautiful loch in the heart of the Trossachs and the birthplace of tourism in Scotland thanks to Sir Walter Scott’s blockbuster of its day, the Lady of the Lake, Loch Katrine and the aqueduct play a central role in the everyday life of the Glasgow area. Gary Caig, Scottish Water’s water operations manager west, said: “The Katrine Aqueduct was fit for a queen then and is still now and remains a hugely important part of our infrastructure so we are really excited to be involved in this celebration of its formal opening. “The aqueduct has certainly, in Queen Victoria’s words, ‘improved the health and comfort of the city’s vast population’ and continues to do so to this day. “And, with climate change and sustainability being so important in the 21st century, it is still as efficient and environmentally-friendly now as it was then because it takes water by gravity – without the need for pumping - from Loch Katrine to the Milngavie and Balmore

water treatment works before it is distributed to customers across a large swathe of Greater Glasgow and west central Scotland.” The Katrine Aqueduct comprises two aqueducts that are 25.75 miles and 23.50 miles in length from the loch to Milngavie north of Glasgow, which together can provide about 120 million gallons of water every day. The first was built to give Glasgow a proper water supply and tackle cholera and includes tunnels through mountainous terrain in the shadow of Ben Lomond and bridges over river valleys. The second was constructed to accommodate the rapid expansion of Glasgow, the ‘second city of the Empire’, in the late 19th century. The entire Katrine Aqueduct scheme cost £3.2m to build, which would be about £320m in today’s prices. It currently supplies about 110 million gallons of water per day to the two water treatment works and it takes the water about 14 hours to travel along the aqueduct from Loch Katrine to the water treatment works. Scottish Water is working on a £15.7m million project to refurbish part of the overall aqueduct scheme at the moment. The project includes structural repairs of three stretches of tunnel and a bridge, improvements to the lining of tunnels and repairs and refurbishments of control valves.


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Profile for Distinctive Publishing

Water Industry Journal 13  

The magazine connecting all those who work in the UK Water Industry

Water Industry Journal 13  

The magazine connecting all those who work in the UK Water Industry