Looking for an engineer with experience in water treatment


  • Electric

    Does anyone know of anyone? I am starting a test project to bid some turn-key modular water treatment plants built in shipping containers. I am looking for someone with experience working with/designing the actual treatment process. UV, Chlorine, or other technologies.


  • Member

    Looks @colin &/or @fullmetalbuddha



  • I have a friend, who was part of the team that built dockside green( a sustainable building with a completely self sustaining biological water treatment facility) she may be able to offer some ideas. Is there a budget?


  • Metal

    @James-TuskAuto said:

    ? I am starting a test project to bid some turn-key modular water treatment plants built in shipping containers. I am looking for someone with experience working with/designing the actual treatment process. UV, Chlorine, or other

    I have a friend who has worked a number of years running wastewater treatment plants. I’m not sure what his extent of knowledge is on the freshwater side, but I know he has studied to write the exam. I would guess he probably has connections in the industry too. Is there a specific bit of information you are looking for that I could ask him about?


  • Electric

    Ideally I am looking for someone interested in partnering up. I am test bidding a job right now, I am putting a price in for a complete modular shipping container structure to see how the price compares to traditional methods of construction as a proof of concept.

    My goal is to be able to market a complete package, preferably small, med, large options directly to Regional Districts, First Nations, and in the longer term to humanitarian organizations and developing nations.

    We can handle the electrical and mechanical installation, we’ve built control packages for several water treatment plants. What I need is someone who can determine how the system is to operate. Provide the theory of operation.


  • Electric

    Producing a similar product for wastewater is a good idea too.


  • Member

    I am not an engineer, but I am a Certified Water Technician with extensive experience in water treatment system design and in working with the five B.C. Health Authorities regarding small water system compliance and construction permit approval. The modular shipping container/packaged plants are not a new idea to the market. In fact, they are a pretty popular alternative, especially for remote sites. I would certainly be able to help you.


  • Electric

    @GrantHomePlus

    I understand the idea isn’t new but it is traditionally being applied to industrial sites rather than for municipal water (at least in BC). I have been involved in a dozen projects over the few years that all use traditional construction methods to provide a complete treatment solution even when the scale is quite small and/or in really remote locations where a prefabricated system seems like a good solution. I am trying to figure out exactly why prefab modular systems aren’t more popular than they are…

    I suspect its lack of comfort or education on the part of engineers specifying projects but I don’t know…obviously it isn’t the nature of the treatment process itself as there can’t be that much variation in design. It might be that the market simply doesn’t realize the options are there.


  • Member

    I’m not sure if a one-size fit all solution would be viable as there is a fair bit of variation in design criteria, even just related to flow rate. The treatment process also varies of course depending to the feed water conditions. That said, for community applications on surface water, it may be possible to build a single unit that would satisfy a significant proportion of applications - perhaps even enough that would make it viable. If the design can incorporate some some measure of pre-treatment customization, it would likely be far more viable.

    In my experience, the problem with micro municipal / community water systems is that they have no money - they have no access or very limited access to grants (except for regional districts). Accordingly, their treatment plan is usually dictated by the lowest cost option, which generally involves using existing infrastructure to house the treatment system.


  • Member

    In any event, if you would like to get together or talk on the phone to discuss in detail, we would be happy to share of thoughts and experiences in this market. We are also fully-equipped to help you in respect of the treatment processes (filtration, UV, chlorination, ultrafiltration, organics removal, iron treatment, arsenic removal, etc. etc.).


  • Electric

    @GrantHomePlus

    Hey Grant,

    Ill stop by your office next week. This week is a bit chaotic being short.


  • Member

    I look forward to it. Unit 5-1490 Pearson Place. Call ahead if you can (250-374-2690. I will be away from the office Wednesday to Friday next week.



  • @GrantHomePlus said:

    dictated by the lowest cost option

    For those of us who are DIY’ers in the audience, the lowest cost option is frequently to slow filter it through several hundred gallons of gravel in big drums… Sometimes with biological / charcoal layers between the gravel layers. My dad was involved in some field tests of very expensive military water filtration systems in the 80’s, and the very best of them were almost as good as a shitload of gravel, at several thousand times the cost. :)

    Problem is the gravel and sand approach is super slow. If you need to filter significant amounts of water, you end up with a lot of filters in parallel. Still if you ever need to build a semi long-term shelter some place and want to have clean drinking water it is a handy thing to know how to do.


  • Member

    It is indeed impressive what can be achieved with old school slow sand filtration. Its performance relies on the formation of a bio-layer which takes a little while to build-up depending on the water conditions. Slow sand filtration is still used as a pre-treatment process but given that it is hard to monitor real-time performance, it can’t be relied upon as a sole measure for microbiological treatment for any sort of regulated application, but as you said - good to know!


  • Metal

    As a follow-up to my original post, I did ask my friend about his thoughts on a project of this type. He mentioned a few names of companies that are currently making this type of modular system (for both potable and waste-water), but like you said, they are traditionally intended for industrial use. He did seem to think that the legal and certification aspect might be a stumbling point in the keeping-costs-low aspect.
    I hope you were/are able to get some more detailed information from GrantHomePlus.
    Good luck in your venture.


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