ABB launches digital solution to reduce energy use and optimise operations in wastewater plants

ABB Ability Smart Solution for Wastewater is the first in a family of digital solutions designed to optimise operations and reduce energy consumption in the water sector.

ABB has launched ABB Ability Smart Solution for Wastewater, a digital solution that addresses the unprecedented challenge faced by wastewater treatment plant operators to achieve both the lowest energy use and the highest operational standards. The new wastewater technology will enable continuous monitoring, coupled with automation, to achieve energy savings of up to 25% during aeration and pumping and up to 10% reduction in chemical usage, ABB claimed.

The solution is composed of two main pillars, advanced process control (APC) and digital twin and simulation technology to forecast future operational needs. It will help wastewater treatment plants reach optimal operating conditions through continuous monitoring and automation. This enables constant, incremental operational adjustments and gains, reducing energy consumption and chemical usage, alongside increasing profitability.

According to the International Energy Agency, global electricity consumption in wastewater treatment reach 222Twh in 2020, with electricity usage across the sector predicted to increase 80% by 2040. This is in part due to the increasing demand for treated wastewater, which is now considered a valuable potential resource.

Marco Achilea, global segment manager, water and infrastructure, ABB Energy Industries, said: “This new product leverages our long-standing expertise in advanced process control, performance optimization and digital twin technology. With the demand for treated wastewater rapidly growing around the world, our goal is to continue to develop sustainable solutions that reduce energy use whilst improving water quality and operational efficiency.”

Developed with hydraulic modelling intelligence from the Danish water environment specialists, DHI Group, the ABB Ability Smart Solution for Wastewater creates a more stable treatment process by predicting wastewater inflow together with environmental factors such as weather patterns, reducing the risk of overflow and fines. ABB Ability Smart Solution for Wastewater will be the first in a family of smart solutions for the water industry. Building on the experience and performances of ABB’s Optimax and APC, this offering is designed to make wastewater treatment plants safer, smarter, and more sustainable.