Valveless Metering to Help Combat Toxic Algae Blooms

Algae is a natural part of our world, its genus comprises organisms that vary from small, singled-celled forms to complex multicellular entities. Algae is prolific and can be found in most environments, from freshwater to hot springs, highly acidic fluids, even snow and ice. Normally, algae serve an important purpose in aquatic life by providing organic matter at the base of the food chain and by producing oxygen. However, toxic algae can form and create Harmful Algal Blooms or HABs which grow and thrive in warm, calm, nutrient-rich water. Under these conditions, the algae bloom produce toxins, which can be harmful to people, animals, fisheries, and wreak havoc on entire ecosystems. One of the main sources that contribute to HABs is the effluent produced by wastewater treatment plants. The effluent contains high levels of ammonia, which through a process of bacterial degradation is converted to nitrates. Many wastewater treatment plants use a process known as “denitrification”, in which nitrates are reduced to nitrogen gas. The gas can then be vented into the atmosphere instead of being released into waterways.  There are several common denitrification processes, including pre-treatment basins, aeration tanks, and blowers. However, one of the most cost-effective options is with the use of methanol.

Methanol is most commonly known as a fuel, but it’s also highly prized by industry for the many methanol derivatives that it’s used to make. Methanol is a volatile; it’s colorless, flammable, and biodegradable, and in wastewater applications it acts as the carbon source that breaks down the nitrates.

Because of its volatility, wastewater treatment facilities that use methanol will also need to select metering pumps that are specially designed monitoring to dispense the chemical. They must have features such as chemical compatibility of wetted parts and electrical ratings for the area where the pump is being installed.

Ideally suited for the metering of methanol and many other chemicals is our CeramPump® line of valveless metering pumps. This innovative product has only one moving part and is constructed from inert and corrosion resistant ceramic parts, which provides a number of advantages. It is highly reliable and extremely precise, with an output variation of only ±1% of set value. This level of precision makes CeramPump® well suited to the low flow volume requirements in industrial and wastewater treatment applications.

To learn more about our CeramPump® valveless metering pump, visit our website and how it can help with your analytic instrumentation applications needs. We also post more industry news and company updates on our Twitter and LinkedIn.

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