Oil skimmers | oil water separators

By: Procon Environmental Technologies  11-11-2011
Keywords: Oil, Water Treatment, Pollution

Procon has acknowledged the fact that oil pollution is a massive global problem that is often disregarded, ignored and its impact underestimated. 1 litre of oil pollutes 1 million litres of water!

Our water treatment equipment is high tech while providing our clients the lowest life cycle cost of all other systems globally.

As the original manufacturers of industrial hydro cyclone separators, Procon utilizes Ultraspin™ who are not only an approved, but the most reliable and experienced supplier

Ultraspin™ is one of the world’s leading designers and manufacturers of high performance separation systems based on innovative hydro cyclone technology first developed by the company’s engineers in 1983.

HOW DOES THE ULTRASPIN™ SEPARATOR WORK?The Ultraspin™ Separator works on a very simple principle. The oily water is pumped tangentially into the large diameter end of the separator. This initiates a spinning vortex. This spinning vortex is accelerated as it moves down the tapered separation tube flinging the heavier water to the outside walls while the lighter oil moves to the centre. The separated oil is removed via a hole in the separator end face, and the treated water is discharged out the other end of the tube.WHY IS IT SUCH A POWERFUL SEPARATOR?Unlike plate-pack-style separators the Ultraspin™ Separator does not rely on weak gravity forces for separation. The centrifugal force generated inside the vortex of the Ultraspin™ Separator is of the order of 1,000 times the force of gravity. With such force even emulsified oil droplets can be separated.

The Ultraspin™ equipment addresses all three phases of oily water at a 1000 times the force of gravity. The hydro cyclone technology is able to remove 95% of 10-15 micron oil droplets from the water thus resulting in a water treatment system that assists our clients in recycling and reusing water in a closed loop. This results in a 85% water saving strategy and eliminates the potential hydrocarbon pollution that can occur downstream without such a system.

Three types of oil that are removed via Ultraspin™ System


Free Oil
-    Free floating oil OR
-    Oil droplets greater than 150 micron
-    Free oil can separate by gravityEmulsified
-    Oil droplets less than 150 micron AND
-    Oil droplets greater than 2 micron
-    Emulsified oil must be treated with more powerful separatorDissolved
-    Oil droplets less than 2 micron OR
-    Physically dissolved in the water
-    Dissolved oil will NOT be treated by conventional gravity, plate pack type systems

Our standard pneumatic models flow ranges from 2m³/h - 7m³/h and also includes tertiary treatment – aeration system to strip volatiles.

Electrical Engineered models can be designed to cover flows over 1000m3/h

Oily Water with Aeration Flow Diagram

PLATE PACKS AND GRAVITY BASED SYSTEMS

Gravity based systems cannot treat the water but only skim gross oil as per graph below (Graph taken from the American Petroleum Institute (API) Guideline document.) Taken from API guideline document

  • Maintenance cost are high – these systems need cleaning on a regular basis to function
  • High maintenance on moving parts and cleaning of plates
  • Additional employees will be required to run the plant and clean out system
  • Less gross oil recovery – can only remove with 20mm plate interval about 65% of 160 micron oil droplets
  • Risk of spillage with plate pack will be significantly increased due to inability of gravity based system to recover  Oil droplets smaller than 160micron
  • Life cycle costs of the entire plate pack system will be higher due to the high maintenance on cleaning activities and maintenance that will be required.
  • Risk of pipe blockages and system failure is very high and will happen.

PLATE PACK: PROCESS

Parallel Plate or Coalescing Plate Separator
A plate pack consists of a chamber containing narrowly separated parallel plates stacked one above the other.  Effluent flows smoothly between the plates with a minimum of disturbance (turbulence)

The plate packs take many different forms.  Some are simple flat plates, some contain proprietary corrugations and bumps; some are arranged in a spiral (VGS), but they all work essentially via the same means.

Oil coalesces on the surface of the plate above and travels to the opposite opening between the plates.  The coalesced oil then migrates to the bulk of oil at the top of the chamber.

The plate pack can be smaller in size compared to settling tanks.  In settling tanks, oil may have to rise several inches or even feet to coalesce, whereas in a plate pack coalescence occurs between the plates, which may be only a few centimeters.

Plate packs have the disadvantages of being susceptible to blocking, especially with viscous thick or fatty oils.  The main design considerations for plate pack are the total wetted plate area, and the spacing between the plates.

Plate packs with large wetted plate area and small plate spacing’s (say less than 7mm) are capable of separating oil droplets down to 80 microns and greater.  Plate packs with small plate spacing’s and higher wetted plate area are more expensive to manufacture.

Tilting corrugated Plate Separation is a simple operation, based on difference in specific gravity between oils and water.

The heart of the system is the specially designed corrugated plate pack in which the plates are set between 15 and 20mm apart. Small oil droplets have short distance to rise before they join other droplets to form buoyant film on underside of plate.

Complete pack is inclined in the separator, encouraging separated oils to rise readily to surface where they are recovered completely automatically by factory preset weirs. No water is skimmed in this operation.

HYDROCYCLONE VS PLATE PACK REFERENCES

It is now a well recognised that hydrocyclone’s are more powerful separators than gravity based devises like CPI (Coalescing Plate Interceptors), VGS (Vertical Gravity Separators) TPI, and similar devices. However given the amount of marketing and sales ‘spin’ that many vendors supply we thought we would give you some independent verification of our claims.

ULTRASPIN SYSTEM

  • Ultraspin is a water treatment system as well as oil recovery system
  • High separation efficiency guaranteed
  • Lowest life cycle cost technology on the market
  • Best available technology internationally
  • High volume of oil recovery which provides a financial return on investment
  • Reduces Environmental Liability and controls pollution

LEGAL LIABILITIES AND LEGISLATION APPLICABLE TO OIL WATER SEPARATION THAT WILL BE COMPLIED WITH BY USING ULTRASPIN AND MYCELX
National Water Act 1998 (Act No. 36 of 1998) Section 19 and 20 refers to:
•    Prevention and remedying effects of pollution; and
•    Control of emergency incidents
•    Discharge limit to any natural water source below2,5mg/l Oil & grease discharge in storm water

National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) Section 28 & 30 refers to:

•    Duty of care and remediation of environmental damage
•    Control of emergency incidents and containment

International Best Practice and Principles

•    ISO 9000/14001/18000

•    Best Available Technology principle

•    Polluter pays principle

•    Cradle to grave principle

HOW DOES THE ULTRASPIN™ SEPARATOR WORK?

The Ultraspin™ Separator works on a very simple principle. The oily water is pumped tangentially into the large diameter end of the separator. This initiates a spinning vortex. This spinning vortex is accelerated as it moves down the tapered separation tube flinging the heavier water to the outside walls while the lighter oil moves to the centre. The separated oil is removed via a hole in the separator end face, and the treated water is discharged out the other end of the tube.

Why Is It Such A Powerful Separator?

Unlike plate-pack-style separators the Ultraspin™ Separator does not rely on weak gravity forces for separation. The centrifugal force generated inside the vortex of the Ultraspin™ Separator is of the order of 1,000 times the force of gravity. With such force even emulsified oil droplets can be separated.

Keywords: Hydro Cyclone, Oil, Pollution, Tertiary Treatment, Water Treatment, Water Treatment System,

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