Engineers' Society of Western Pennsylvania


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Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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Monday, November 13, 2023

Technical Sessions

M1: Pilot-Scale Studies for PFAS Treatment: Comparing the Effectiveness of Emerging Technologies

IWC Rep: Brandon Delis, Electric Power Research Institute, Charlotte, NC
Session Chair: Joseph Woodley, UCC Environmental, Waukegan, IL
Discussion Leader: Thomas Gurley, ChemTreat, Glen Allen, VA

Time: 8:00 – 11:00 AM

Join us for an engaging technical discussion on PFAS treatment, where we’ll explore advancements in technology, pilot results, and industry challenges in managing these contaminants. Attendees are encouraged to actively participate, share experiences, and ask questions to foster a dynamic and informative dialogue on this environmental issue. Don’t miss this opportunity to deepen your technical understanding and contribute to the conversation!

IWC 23-01: A Carbon-Based Adsorption/Separation Process Removes Long- and Short-Chain PFAS with Minimal Waste Production
Dave Holland and Terrence Reid, P.E., Aqua-Aerobic Systems, Loves Park, IL

Under the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP), testing of a novel adsorption/separation process was conducted to remove per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from highly-contaminated surface water and groundwater at two military sites. Both bench top and field pilot trials were conducted using production level sorbent media and separation technologies. Thirteen tests were conducted over a 9-month period at the Horsham Air Guard Station (HAGS) using a dual-train pilot system on surface water. Follow-up testing evaluated five test conditions at the Willow Grove Naval Air Station (WGNAS) on groundwater. The process evaluations were conducted to confirm the technology’s higher specific adsorption rates (SARs) exhibited in a prior study on groundwater containing aqueous film forming foam (AFFF).

This paper details the methodology used and the results obtained at both sites, comparing the findings to those of GAC and IX technologies on the same source water. Also presented are challenges encountered while treating each water type as well as the remedies employed.

Discusser: Ryan Schipper, Barr Engineering, Ft. Wayne, IN

IWC 23-02: Evaluation of PFAS Removal via Adsorption from Groundwater Infiltrating into a Chrome Plating Facility Basement
Francisco Barajas-Rodriguez, AECOM, Omaha, NE; Matt Vander Eide, AECOM; Barry Harding, AECOM

Poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are persistent compounds in the environment and have associated health risks, making their treatment in water a prominent topic. Groundwater infiltrating into the basement of an abandoned former chromium plating facility has been impacted with 1,4-Dioxane, chlorinated volatile organic compounds (VOCs), various metals, and PFAS. Maximum concentration of PFAS at the site is as high as 19,000 ng/L. PFAS can be treated via adsorptive media, which concentrates PFAS in a small volume waste stream while attaining cleanup. In this study, traditional and novel PFAS adsorbents were evaluated via bench-scale treatability testing to meet treatment objectives for the impacted water.

Discusser: Tom Gurley, ChemTreat, Glen Allen, VA

IWC 23-03: The Cost of PFAS Destruction in Landfill Leachate: A feasibility study from Minnesota
Andy McCabe, Ali Ling, Katie Wolohan, and Becca Vermace, Barr Engineering Co., Minneapolis, MN; Scott Kyser, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, St. Paul, MN

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency commissioned a feasibility study to develop conceptual costs for treatment of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in landfill leachate. The goals of this study were to identify options that are able to mineralize PFAS and that are commercially available. Flow-based cost curves were developed for four alternatives, including granular activated carbon (GAC) adsorption, modified clay adsorption, reverse osmosis separation with GAC adsorption for concentrate management, and foam fractionation.

Discusser: Nicole Bolea, ECT2, Minneapolis, MN

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M2: Applying Advanced Oxidation Processes for Destruction of APIs and Other Problem Constituents

IWC Rep: Dennis McBride, Burns & McDonnell, Kansas City, MO
Session Chair: Karen Budgell, WSP, Athens, TX
Discussion Leader: Ben Zhang, Ph.D., P.E., Burns & McDonnell, Chicago, IL

Time: 8:00 – 11:00 AM

Advanced water treatment technologies, such as advanced oxidation processes (AOP), may be required to meet tightening effluent limits for active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and other problem constituents. Optimizing AOP for the removal of these contaminants is the focus of this session. These three papers dive into the details on different types of AOP and how AOP can be implemented to remove APIs, 1,4-dioxane, nitrosamines, and chlorine. Operating parameters such as operating UV wavelength, various oxidant chemicals, reaction time, and balancing radical generation and energy consumption are discussed. Operational data and projected capital and annual operations costs are presented.

IWC 23-04: Advancements in AOP HOD™ UV – More Radicals with Less Energy & Equipment in AOP
Ytzhak Rozenberg, Atlantium Technologies, Beit Shemesh, Israel; Dennis Bitter, Atlantium Technologies, Sarasota, FL; Joshua Scott, Atlantium Technologies, Dallas, TX; Amichai Felder, Atlantium Technologies, Beit Shemesh, Israel

UV is a viable tool, and even the BAT, for chemical pollutants elimination in water by oxidation process. The regulated levels are getting lower to PPB and even to PPT. The key is the ability of the UV apparatus to efficiently generate radicals evenly spread in the volume and to monitor all UV related parameters. In our presentation we will present a special model of UV technology being successfully used for AOP.

Discusser: Srikanth Muddasani, Civil & Environmental Consultants, Inc., Pittsburgh, PA

IWC 23-05: Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients Reduction via Advanced Oxidation Processes and Reverse Osmosis
Mohsen Ghafari, Joshua W. Griffis, and Simon P Dukes, Evoqua Water Technologies, Tewksbury, MA; Thomas K Mallmann, Evoqua Water Technologies, Rockford, IL

Uncontrolled release of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) can have adverse impacts on the environment. Conventional methods are ineffective due to persistence and the non-biodegradable nature of APIs. In this study, advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) including UV-NaOCl, UV-H2O2, ozonation, peroxone, and electrooxidation were tested to destruct APIs. Results suggest that combination of ozonation and UV-based reactions could be effective for complete treatment. Reverse osmosis was also effective in separating and concentrating APIs for potential water reclamation.

Discusser: William Celenza, P.E., Burns & McDonnell

IWC 23-06: Recalcitrant Pharmaceutical Wastewater Advanced Oxidation Pilot Study and Full-Scale Design
Jason Lewandowski, Ramboll, Raleigh, NC

Wastewater containing recalcitrant active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) is often disposed via offsite incineration. The feasibility and cost of onsite advanced oxidation was assessed as an alternative disposal method by performing a pilot study and designing the full-scale treatment system. Pilot testing confirmed that advanced oxidation with ozone and hydrogen peroxide could reduce APIs below analytical detection limits. However, incineration was preferred because the CapEx for the full-scale advanced oxidation system was $12.8M.

Discusser: Joe Tamburini, P.E., P.Eng., AWC Water Solutions, Englewood, CO

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M3: Lithium & Rare Earth Unleashing the Power of Lithium in Water: Applications, Challenges, and Future Prospects

IWC Rep: Jeff Easton, Ph.D., P.E., ClearStream, Sandy, UT
Session Chair: John Yen, Marmon Industrial Water, Warren, NJ
Discussion Leader: Juan Pinto, Energy Recovery, Inc., San Leandro, CA

Time: 8:00 – 11:00 AM

Join us for an exciting glimpse into the future, discussing emerging trends and cutting-edge developments in lithium-water systems. Here, we will focus on the challenge of extracting lithium from brine using membrane, ion exchange and other cutting edge technologies. Whether you are a researcher, engineer, industry professional, or simply curious about the potential of lithium in water, this session offers valuable insights and networking opportunities.

IWC 23-07: Withdrawn

IWC 23-08: Direct Lithium Extraction and Post Processing Optimization for Brine to Battery Chemicals

Sheida Arfania, M.A.Sc., Megan Low, and Benjamin Sparrow, Saltworks Technologies Inc., Richmond, British Columbia, Canada

Optimized post-processing through concentration, refining, and converting (CRC) systems is critical to the adoption of direct lithium extraction (DLE). Combining DLE and CRC systems shows great promise in the production of battery-grade lithium chemicals from lithium-containing geological brines. The authors have supported optimization of DLE-CRC systems for economics and lithium recovery on ten brine-to-battery projects. The authors will highlight critical metrics in overall process optimization of DLE-CRC, as well as important technological developments to monitor.

Discusser: Jake Moen, DuPont Water Solutions, Duluth, MN

IWC 23-09: Ion Exchange Resins for the Purification, Refining and Recovery of Critical Battery Metals
Zhendong Liu, Lanxess Corporation, Birmingham, NJ; Dirk Steinhilber, LANXESS Deutschland GmbH, Cologne, Germany

The growing demand for high purity battery materials such as lithium, nickel, cobalt and copper requires efficient methods for extracting, purifying and recycling of these metals. The paper presents lab testing data and studies on using ion exchange resins in producing key lithium ion battery materials. It covers broad applications such as impurity removal, metal separation, selective extraction and recycling. Special functional groups and high selectivity are the keys for the resins to work effectively.

Discusser: Rusi Kapadia, Newterra Limited, Toronto, ON, Canada

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M4: Energy Transition and Carbon Capture—Many Colors and Stripes

IWC Rep: Tisha Scroggin-Wicker, P.E., Burns & McDonnell, Kansas City, MO
Session Chair: HG Sanjay, Ph.D., P.E., Bechtel Corporation, Reston, VA
Discussion Leader: Don Downey, Purolite, an Ecolab Company, Paris, ON, Canada

Time: 8:00 – 11:00 AM

We have all colors and stripes, green hydrogen, blue hydrogen, carbon capture. Come join us for the first energy transition session at International Water Conference (IWC) to hear about water challenges, needs and opportunities related to carbon capture and the energy transition. We have three great papers discussing carbon capture, hydrogen, and the energy transition to interest people of all stripes.

IWC 23-10: Carbon Capture Water Requirements and Wastewater Treatment
Steve Russell, P.E. and Eric Eisenbarth, Kiewit Corporation, Lenexa, KS

Carbon capture systems tend to be water intensive due to the need for cooling water, demineralized water, and steam along with the generation of a flue gas condensate wastewater stream. These systems are frequently retrofitted into existing facilities where the utilization of existing water sources, treatment systems, and wastewater recycle/disposal can be unique and must be carefully considered. This paper provides guidance on water and wastewater issues associated with amine absorbent-based carbon capture systems.

Discusser: Brad Buecker, Buecker & Associates, Lawrence, KS

IWC 23-11: Blue and Green Hydrogen: Water and Wastewater Treatment Needs and Challenges
Kishor Nayar, Ph.D., P.E., Juvencio Casanova, and Alexander McDonald, Evoqua Water Technologies, Houston, TX

In 2019, around 71% of the world’s hydrogen, was produced by refineries, ammonia, and methanol producers, with hydrogen primarily sourced from natural gas without carbon capture. Greenhouse emissions targets and government incentives are driving hydrogen decarbonization via a shift to blue hydrogen and green hydrogen. In this paper, we discuss water usage and costs, while focusing on technologies for water treatment for green hydrogen and challenges associated with wastewater treatment for blue hydrogen projects.

Discusser: Matt Roth, DuPont Water Solutions, Philadelphia, PA

IWC 23-12: Key Water Issues for the Major Energy Production Technologies of the Energy Transition
Andrew Hodgkinson, MScEng, FIChemE, CeEng, Worley, Melbourne, Clifton Hill, VIC, Australia; Thomas Higgins, Worley, St. Augustine, FL; Hubert Fleming, Ph.D., Sc.D., P.E., Worley, Fenwick Island, DE

This paper reviews water needs for major energy production technologies enabling the global transition from fossil based to renewable energy, including:

  • Hydrogen and ammonia
  • Nuclear power
  • Renewable natural gas
  • Low carbon liquid fuels
  • Pumped Storage hydropower
  • Battery materials and battery manufacturing

We will show that this large transformation of the global energy system does not pose insurmountable obstacles – at least in regard to water supply and treatment.

Discusser: Jillian Flanagan, P. Eng., Stantec, Houston, TX

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