Feb 12, 2010

VWS Envig Awarded Refurbishment of South Africa’s Largest Seawater Desalination Plant

Once complete, desalination plant will produce 1,800 cu meters of drinking water daily

VWS Envig, a Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies subsidiary, provider of water treatment solutions in South and sub-Saharan Africa, has been awarded the contract to refurbish an existing reverse osmosis (RO) sea water desalination plant for the Albany Coast Water Board (ACWB) at Bushmans River Mouth, next to Kenton-on-Sea.

Once the refurbishment is completed, the ACWB desalination plant will produce 1,800 cu meters of drinking water daily, making it the largest desalination plant in South Africa. The project follows the successful installation of desalination plants for the communities of Cannon Rocks and Boknes Strand, which also form part of the Ndlambe municipality.

The contract involves maintaining a supply of potable water while the existing plant is being refurbished, the supply of a new RO skid, as well as the integration and optimization of existing plant and equipment. The project also includes the implementation of energy saving devices to improve efficiency and reduce operational costs, as well as the running and maintenance of the plant for a year.

The plant is expected to be ready for beneficial operation by the end of March 2010. VWS Envig will then operate and maintain the facility for a 13 month period under an operations and maintenance contract.

The plant currently has three reverse osmosis trains, mounted on separate skids, in various states of operational functionality. The supplied solution will reduce the total number of skids, while bringing the plant up to its specified delivery rate of 1,800 cu meters per day.

The current solution combines the existing RO1 and RO2 trains and places them onto a single skid named RO12. The new RO12 skid will utilize an existing 160 kW Grundfos pump, as well as an energy recovery device, a new 15 kW booster pump and a new pressure exchanger to supply the RO train’s energy requirements and force saltwater through the RO membranes. The RO12 skid will therefore represent a massive energy saving for ACWB, Veolia said.