Amendments to existing production process resulted in significant reduction of waste water at Bevisol Ltd
Bevisol Ltd is a non-brand-owning company that produces a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages for the drinks industry. They specialise in ciders, perrys, made wines, as well as alcohol bases for use in Ready To Drink (RTD) products. As part of their ongoing continuous improvement initiatives, Bevisol employed Puresep, part of the Envirogen Group to look at how they could reduce their environmental impact as well as increase manufacturing efficiency.
Effluent was proving to be the most pivotal issue, due to recent expansion the amount of effluent produced by Bevisol was due to exceed the discharge permit consent. To understand this situation better, Envirogen completed a series of hollow fibre and flat sheet membrane trials on the effluent produced by the regeneration process of the demineralization plant. Bill Denyer, Envirogen Process Specialist identified that with the correct pre-treatment and osmotic pressure it was feasible to recover a significant amount of the waste produced. Thus achieving enhanced site efficiencies and further meeting environmental requirements and regulations.
An ion exchange system was generating a large amount of the waste water produced by site, with 40m³ of effluent going to waste. The hydraulic loading of the waste (chemicals and re-gen water) was hitting the maximum amount allowed, resulting in the remainder being tankered off site. Tankering waste from site on a regular basis can be costly, inefficient and environmentally un-sound.
The solution recommended by Envirogen to reduce the effluent was to feed the regenerated water to a recapture vessel where the waste stream was collected, assessed for pH and neutralised as required using dosing equipment. During this process the tank contents are recirculated using a 30m³/hr centrifugal pump. After the pH correction stage the stored effluent is passed through an ultra-filtration (UF) membrane system to remove suspended solids and colloidal matter. The UF system is a required pre-treatment step prior to the water recovery stage. The UF membrane skid is a dual skid, each holding four membranes, with each membrane having a 75m² surface area. The UF plant has 100% duty per stream, with the 50% duty during service across two streams. This enables back-pulse sequences to occur without impacting output. Post UF, the feed water quality means it was suitable for a semi-permeable membrane treatment stage. This recaptured water was then fed on a dedicated line, using a variable speed inverter driven pump to ensure maximum water efficiencies on all regeneration sequences. This altered process has improved water recovery by 80%, with only 20% of the original volume ending up as effluent.
Bill Denyer, Envirogen says; “an in depth understanding of how a plant operates is crucial in being able to offer solutions that meet performance requirements. Bevisol were very open and with some amends to their production we were able to solve some potentially high cost issues immediately” Chris Newall, Managing Director, Bevisol says “The thorough analysis undertaken by Envirogen at the early stages, meant a robust workable solution was put in place. From the word go our costs were reduced, environmental impact lessened, and efficiency and capability within the plant increased”
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