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A facility in Boston, Massachusetts received a ProChem Metaloc (Metals-Selective Ion-Exchange) system.

The Metaloc system is a standalone, skid-mounted system that will remove lead and other water contaminates from wastewater generated from battery washing operations at the facility.

The system is set up to treat in batches at a flow rate of up to 6gpm. The treated water will be recirculated and reused, eliminating the need to discharge to the sanitary sewer system. The system is equipped with electronic sensors to monitor flow, conductivity, pressure, and water level with alarm capabilities. The columns are dual arrangement such that one set may be put in-service while the other set is being regenerated at the ProChem regeneration facility.

For the Engineered Woods and Pellets industries especially, treating and reusing WESP wastewater can save millions of dollars per year in maintenance costs alone.

From an operations perspective, the equipment at the plant comes second only to personnel. If equipment function isn’t optimal, production will suffer. Maintenance tasks such as cleaning out WESP and RTO units to remove solids and contaminants can impact the bottom line. Such activities are not profitable; the maintenance can take hours and even weeks at a time and causes the plant to shut down, which impacts productivity. What if the equipment didn’t require constant cleaning or replacing? What if all that thick, dark wastewater didn’t have to be evaporated and disposed of?

What if the wastewater that currently comes out of the WESP could be recycled into process-ready water again? What if the WESP never had to receive already concentrated wastewater to begin with? Effectively treating and reusing WESP wastewater protects the valuable equipment from gumming, corroding, and slowing production. If the water that goes into the WESP is clean, maintenance downtime becomes less of a burden and hydroblasting is unnecessary. Not only that, but having to haul off wastewater and solids for disposal can also be greatly reduced or eliminated. ProChem’s CleanWESP™ chemical treatment program effectively treats WESP wastewater and feeds the treated water back to the WESP. Cleaner water into the WESP means a cleaner WESP and cleaner vapor entering the RTO.

CleanWESP is an all organic, proprietary process designed to reduce TSS, TDS, potassium and sodium oxides, and high chlorides (>1,000ppm that corrode stainless steel). This proven process uses coagulant and polymer to treat wood processing wastewaters specifically. It can be tailored to each application too, to ensure it addresses the unique issues occurring at a given customer’s site. In addition to the CleanWESP program, ProChem offers water treatment system design and integration services, operations and maintenance services, and ongoing service and support for its products. Stop spending weeks’ worth of man hours on maintenance activities. Instead, lower your operational costs and increase production potential by reusing process wastewater. Contact us for more information about water reuse and the CleanWESP program.

Case Study

At ProChem, our mission is to provide our customers with solutions. More specifically, we want to provide cost-effective solutions that actually solve their problems and allow them to meet their goals.

That mission often requires time and specialization. We've dedicated the past 15 years to a (very) long list of contaminants, industry-specific issues, and customer-specific issues. As a result, we can meet a lot of different challenges here with our extensive (and impressive) catalog of equipment and chemistry. But there are still corners of the market that we have not yet reached. We want to be prepared for those challenges, and we will be with a little help from our friends at ABS Wastewater.

Like ProChem, ABS Wastewater is a full-service water and wastewater treatment company with products suitable for many different industries. Their flagship family of Regenex Wastewater Treatment Systems is ideal for cost effectively removing a (very) long list of organic compounds. Regenex utilizes a high performance, transformative absorbent technology, developed by their parent company, ABS Materials. This media is reusable. it can be regenerated over and over again while continuously treating wastewater. Regenex is specially designed and equipped to handle certain contaminants that are best left to the specialists at ABS Wastewater. That's why we're excited to announce that we're adding Regenex to our solutions offerings.

Through our mutual collaboration, ProChem and ABS Wastewater can be more cost competitive with a quicker turnaround on solutions for our customers. By expanding our respective catalogs to include one another's products, we can reach more industrial facilities. We share the same goal: solve industry's water problems. Together, we are one (giant) step closer. We're proud to have ABS Wastewater's Regenex systems as a solution option, and we are proud to be part of ABS Wastewater's solutions catalog too.

Learn More

Read the press release

About Wet Testing

Before we ship a system to a customer site for installation, we test it here in our facility in Virginia. We call it a "wet test." Wet testing includes running water through the system, testing and calibrating instruments, checking for leaks, simulating scenarios, training Technical Services staff, applying finishing touches, and ensuring all the pieces are functional and present before shipping.

ProChem is currently starting up a 10gpm CWP - continuous flow wastewater treatment system at a leading global securities company. The system will remove heavy metals and suspended solids from their waste stream before discharging it.  The following images are from the wet testing that was conducted on this CWP system.

T104 filling with water for the wet test.

Technician, Turner Ward, calibrating a pH sensor.

Technical Services Representative, Scott Buff, getting familiar with the HMI.

I & C Manager, Mark Trussell, triple checking the PLC program.

Next Steps

After the successful we test, this system was shipped to Utah for installation. The installation and start-up process is now nearly complete. This process includes operations training and dedicated Technical Services staff on site. They are there to ensure that the system is running effectively, that the operations staff is ready to operate it on their own, and that our customer's expectations have been met--before we leave the site.

Watch a video from the wet testing on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ja76_vpMCM

Many Engineered Wood and Pellet manufacturing facilities experience regular periods of scheduled downtime just to clean their equipment (WESP, centrifuge, piping, etc.). Downtime for scheduled maintenance can be frustrating and cost millions of dollars, especially if that maintenance includes replacing RTO media.

RTO media can be cleaned using hydroblasting and/or caustic based cleaners. That works but only for a few cleaning cycles. It's also expensive. The other repair option for plugged RTO media is replacing it. This can cost millions between the media itself, the labor associated with the replacement, and the downtime for the facility. RTO media replacement and regular equipment cleaning are only two costly maintenance activities. Engineered Wood and Pellet facilities incur many costs when it comes to maintaining their valuable equipment:

  • Replacing RTO media every 2 to 3 years (about $1 million each time)
  • Hydroblasting once per quarter
  • Between 60 and 80 man hours for equipment cleaning
  • Plant shut down for the maintenance time period
  • Disposal costs for solids from centrifuges
  • Cost associated with storing wastewater on site during maintenance down time, and then hauling it off for disposal
  • Costs associated with environmental compliance violoations for storing wastewater

Facilities can save on these costly repairs and replacements by preventing contaminants from entering the equipment in the first place. Removing contaminants such as tars, lignins, sodium, and potassium from the water fed to the WESP, for example, prevents any of those liquid fine particles from entering the RTO. This can extend the life of the RTO media indefinitely. Since implementing the CleanWESP treatment program, one ProChem customer has gone 10+ years straight without having to replace their RTO media. CleanWESP is a chemical treatment program designed to remove damaging contaminants from recycle tank water in order to protect valuable equipment and save time. ProChem, Inc. performs a treatability study on the water from each customer site to determine the appropriate treatment program for that situation. The goal of CleanWESP is to protect valuable equipment, saving the customer down time and maintenance costs.

CleanWESP for the Wood Industry