Control system at Grand Rapids WWTP helps save residents money, energy

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LOVELAND, CO, Dec. 11, 2013 -- A real-time control (RTC) system recently installed at a wastewater treatment plant in Grand Rapids, Mich., is saving the city's residents a significant amount of money and energy.

Provided by Hach Company, the installation of the new nitrification system has allowed the wastewater treatment plant to save the city more than 735,000 kilowatt hours of electricity and $62,000 annually, according to Grand Rapids Mayor, George Heartwell. As such, the facility has saved 15 percent in aeration energy costs since installing the RTC system in June and has also improved the control of its effluent, according to Mike Lunn, the plant's environmental services director.

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The insallation has resulted in a nearly $60,000 energy-efficiency incentive payment from Consumers Energy, the local public utility. Further, the city received a $58,728 rebate check from Consumers Energy after investing to upgrade the wastewater treatment plant's aeration system, including installing Hach's control system.

Bob Dabkowski, application development manager for Hach, added, "Energy costs associated with the aeration basin are by far the largest expense for wastewater facilities because blowers are run continuously. "Hach's RTC system for nitrification (RTC-N) outputs a dissolved oxygen setpoint based upon the ammonia load entering and leaving the aeration basin, triggering the blowers to run at the optimal level for nitrification while reducing wasted energy."

Configuring the controller takes less than 30 minutes, making for a quick and off-the-shelf experience. The Hach RTC-N system is designed for facilities using continuous flow and continuous aeration-activated sludge processes. The system consists of two ammonia analyzers, a suspended solids probe, a touch screen interface, and the real-time control module which analyzes data and calculates the dissolved oxygen needed to maintain an effluent ammonia setpoint.

About Hach Company

For more than 60 years, Hach Company has developed innovative solutions used to test the quality of water, liquids and air. Manufactured and distributed worldwide, Hach systems are designed to simplify analysis by offering sophisticated on-line instrumentation, accurate portable laboratory equipment, high-quality prepared reagents, complete easy-to-follow methods, and life-time technical support. For more information, visit www.hach.com.

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