Wastewater treatment solution for a critical airport application

When a utility and services provider was commissioned to create an environmentally-critical application for one of the world’s busiest airports, they collaborated with SEKO for a failsafe solution.

The European airport manages more than 80 million passengers each year. Among the logistical challenges management faced to ensure a safe and efficient operation is managing the effect of cold weather on aircraft.

During winter, the presence of snow and ice disrupts airflow over the wings and tail of an aircraft, hindering its ability to create lift and consequently preventing pilots from taking off.

To avoid delay or cancellation of potentially hundreds of flights and the subsequent disruption to travellers, the airport invested in de-icing cannons to spray airliners with a heated glycol fluid. This process ensured that settled snow and ice melted while preventing further build-up once planes were airborne.

A commitment to minimising environmental impact
The airport was concerned that wastewater from this process could contaminate waterways with glycol, having a devasting effect on surrounding waterborne wildlife. With up to 1,000 litres of de-icer required to clear an Airbus A380 and hundreds of flights departing daily, the pollution risk was significant.

With a clear vision for sustainable growth, the airport has been working to reduce its environmental impact for several years. Hence, any contamination incident would be seen as a significant setback that results in negative publicity and impacts its public profile.

The airport management, therefore, commissioned a utility provider to build and operate treatment works adjacent to the site to improve the quality of wastewater being discharged.

When designing the plant, the utility company decided to treat the wastewater via a flocculation process, whereby contaminated particles in liquid clump together and eventually sink, allowing them to be separated and the remaining clean water safely discharged.

Looking for a solution capable of managing this complex and demanding process, SEKO was approached to supply an automated polymer batching system that could separate pollutants and allow treated water to be safely discharged into a nearby watercourse.

Following an extensive assessment of the site and application, SEKO recommended its PolyCendos polymer preparation unit (PPU) that automatically doses up to 200 litres of wastewater per second with flocculant.

The full article is available in the latest edition of Water & Wastewater Asia May/Jun 2022 issue. To continue reading, click here.