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Wastewater Systems and Fiberglass

Wastewater systems will vary in scale and complexity depending on the application; common wastewater systems are designed to meet the needs of housing developments, municipalities, resorts, public parks, sanitary stations, rural development, recreation areas, and schools—just to name a few. One of the most common problems related to wastewater systems is their susceptibility to corrosion. This issue is of particular concern for facility managers, planners and engineers who must adhere to stringent Federal, State and local regulations. Fiberglass provides stability and assurance to those who need solutions; custom-fabricated fiberglass products are ideal for wastewater systems—when designed properly, to specification, they are structurally sound, watertight, corrosion and abrasion resistant, and most importantly—a cost effective option.

Within wastewater treatment systems, regardless of whether they have been designed for treating 1,000,000 gallons per day or more, or for small commercial use, hydrogen sulfide and sulfuric acid may potentially cause degradation to infrastructure and/or lead to corrosion issues. Anaerobic conditions provide environments that feed acid generating microbes. Fiberglass that has been designed and fabricated with a corrosion barrier is an ideal materials solution in many wastewater applications, especially where anaerobic conditions are persistent.

Fiberglass brings versatility to the table—among much else including light-weight, high strength-to-weight ratio, it can also be designed to meet vacuum specifications—an important component in some wastewater applications. Fiberglass applications in the wastewater or water purification industry include, but are not limited to, chemical water treatment, industrial waste water treatment, lime-soda treatment, chlorine, disinfection, clarification, demineralization, oil demulsification, metal precipitation, odor, control, bioaugmentation, and the processing/handling/storage of many chemical precipitants, coagulants, flocculants, and defoamers.

Corrosion is a systemic issue that plagues just about every aspect of our life. According to one recent study released by NACE and CC technologies, the US production and manufacturing sector alone reports and estimated $17.6 billion annually in damages—this includes major industries such as agriculture, petroleum, power generation, and pulp and paper. In particular, the water and wastewater sector accounts for approximately $36 billion or 14% of the direct cost of corrosion in the U.S. alone, a staggering $276 billion dollars annually.

According to NACE International, “Both public and private water and wastewater agencies throughout the United States have infrastructure assets ranging in value, from millions to billions of dollars. Assets include, dams, aqueducts, tunnels, transmission/collection pipelines, water and wastewater treatment plants, pumping plants, distribution pipelines and storage.” Research has shown that fiberglass is a sound option for replacing many traditional materials, specifically in water related applications, materials such as concrete, steel alloys, cast iron, ductile iron, brass, copper and or any other material that cannot withstand corrosive attack.

Think of the possibilities; within the wastewater industry there are many ideal jobs for fiberglass—projects where functionality is critical and where long life cycles can have huge returns. Custom fiberglass materials could be used for dosing tanks, surge tanks, settling tanks and other accessories for tank systems including baffle walls, railings, ladders, decking, and fencing. In some systems where chemical applications are necessary batching stations have been designed using fiberglass for both storage, containment and general infrastructure. When it comes down to it, more than anything else, fiberglass can provide effective corrosion systems that have the potential to reduce plant downtime and maximize output.

Uses of Fiberglass Pipe and Large Diameter Fiberglass Pipe

Applications and Key Benefits

uses of fiberglass pipeSince the mid to late 1980’s underground large-diameter composite piping has continued to grow in applications and usage. Technological advancements in the filament winding process, corrosion resistance, education and outreach, and strong market forces have contributed to the popularity of fiberglass pipe. Definitions of what constitutes large-diameter pipes can vary, but generally speaking they range from 12” to 14’ in diameter. 

Composite, or fiberglass pipe, has been utilized in a wide range of industries such as power generation, petrochemical and desalination.  Fiberglass pipe is corrosion resistant, has a life cycle that often exceeds 30 years, and has become increasingly more desirable as an alternative to steel, other metal alloys, ductile iron, and concrete.  According to an article published in 2008, titled “Large Diameter Pipe: Lasting Function in a World of Growth” more than 60,000 km (37,280 miles) of composite large diameter pipe are in operation around the world. 

Although fiberglass was once viewed as specialty product, for its ability to withstand an attack from sulphuric acid, it has now become a standard material, if not the standard in major market segments for a variety of reasons.  For example, fiberglass has been employed in drinking water projects, irrigation systems for agriculture, feed lines and penstock for hydroelectric power plants, power plant cooling water systems, gravity and pressure sanitary sewers systems, and pipeline rehabilitation “slip liners”.  Over the past two decades fiberglass has begun to transcend it’s early stereotypes as a one-trick pony (e.g. corrosion resistance) and has demonstrated its value as a cost-effective material, offering a plethora of end-user benefits.

Chief among the reasons for fiberglass increased usage and popularity are key benefits such as high strength-to-weight ratio, dimensional stability, good mechanical properties, ease of installation, reduced installation costs, reduced maintenance cost, and overall durability in extreme conditions. Similarly, another advantage of fiberglass pipe is it has a smoother inner surface when compared to traditional construction materials.  This attribute, smooth internal bore, resists scale-deposits and can create greater flow of service liquid over the life of the project.

When designing an underground large diameter pipe system many considerations need to be taken into account; local soil conditions, depth of water table, burial loads, live loads, deflection due to burial stress and operating temperatures—just to name a few.   Similarly, an American Water Works Association manual, Fiberglass Pipe Manual, also known as M45, provides equations that take into account factors such as fluid velocity and fluid pressure, head loss due to turbulent flow, water hammer, buckling pressure, and surge pressure.  Designing a proper underground piping system is a complex process that involves extensive calculations—product design should always be by qualified engineers. 

Choosing Corrosion Resistant Resin: 11 Things You Should Know

corrosion resistant resinFiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) use has grown tremendously over the past seven decades in oil and gas, chemical processing, pulp and paper, mining and minerals, wastewater treatment, water treatment, desalination, and power generation—to name a few.  One of the primary reasons FRP has gained so much traction is that it has superior corrosion resistance when compared to other construction materials such as stainless steels, carbon steels, titanium, aluminum, and nickel alloys.  That being said, there are a wide range of corrosive environments throughout many industries and as such special requirements must be taken into consideration when designing/formulating FRP to endure optimal performance. 

When requesting corrosion resistant resin recommendations for FRP equipment applications, users or specifiers should be prepared to supply the following data:

  1. All chemicals to which the equipment will be exposed: feedstocks, intermediates, products and by-products, waste materials, and cleaning chemicals
  2. Normal operating concentrations of chemicals, maximum and minimum concentrations (including trace amounts)
  3. pH range of the system
  4. Normal operating temperatures of the equipment, maximum and minimum temperatures
  5. Duration of normal, maximum  and upset operating temperatures
  6. Abrasion resistance and/or agitation requirements
  7. Equipment size
  8. Manufacturing methods
  9. Flame retardance requirements
  10. Thermal insulation requirements
  11. Vacuum Specifications
Source: Ashland Resin Selection Guide

Please contact us today to learn more.

Building Waste Water Treatment Systems—No Problem

waste water treatment systemsEvery year there are technological advancements.  New materials are available today that once were just an idea or considered novel.  In wastewater treatment, chemical processing, desalination, or other corrosive services, Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) are becoming common place, replacing conventional materials, and have the advantage of light weight (1/6 the weight of steel), cavitation resistance, low coefficient of friction, and corrosion resistance. 

Our series 5000 FRP pipe has been specially designed for severely corrosive industrial services, over a wide temperature range from sub-zero to 180⁰f and is suitable for earth burial at all depths with selection of wall thickness, ribs, and filament wind angle . 

Series 5000 is a filament wound fiberglass reinforced premium vinyl ester epoxy composite pipe with UV inhibition. It’s recommended for a wide range of applications including brine and brackish water, potable water, chlorine, oxidizing chemicals and acids, alkalies, and non-oxidizing acids—to name a few. 

This FRP pipe is ideal for salt or seawater handling and will also withstand chemicals that are commonplace in wastewater treatment and water purification, such as, chlorine dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, and sodium hypochlorite.

Our FRP pipe can be designed, formulated, and manufactured per your specifications, industry requirements and is meets ASTM D-2996 Classification Type 1, Grade 2, and Class E standards.  Similarly, the resins used in Series 5000 pipe meet the requirements of F.D.A. Regulations 21-CFR-175.105 and 21-CFR-177.2420, respectively.  Diameters, ranging from 1/2″ Ø up to 168″ Ø; wide range of lengths available.

As a custom manufacturer of pipe and fittings, we can design and build pipe to handle burial conditions ranging from live loads due to highway and rail traffic – to earth loads of 100 feet or greater. We even have experience with underwater installations. Our engineers will welcome the opportunity to work with you on a pipe design, backfill selection and installation methods to meet your specific requirements.

Specifications:

  • ASTM D2996
  • Classification Type 1, Grade , and Class E
  • FDA Regulations 21-CFR-175.105
  • FDA 21-CFR-177.2420

Composition:

  • Nominal 40 to 50 mil Glass Veil and/or Nexus Reinforced Corrosion Liner
  • Filament Wound Structural Overlap
  • A premium grade vinyl ester resin,
  • pigmented dark grey for UV inhibition
  • Custom formulations available

FRP has proven its worth in a wide range of applications. With longer life cycles, lower installation costs, design flexibility, and superior corrosion and abrasion resistance it’s quickly becoming the go-to material throughout many markets the world over.

FRP for Ferric Chloride Tanks and Waste Water Treatment

ferric chloride tankFerric chloride or FeCl3, is an industrial scale commodity chemical compound that has many important industrial applications. When dissolved in water, FeCl3 undergoes hydrolysis and gives off heat in an exothermic reaction. The resulting brown, acidic, and corrosive solution is used as a flocculant in sewage treatment and drinking water production, and as an etchant for copper-based metals in printed circuit boards.

Ferric chloride is used in many industrial and sanitary wastewater treatment applications, due to its high efficiency, effectiveness in clarification, and utility as a sludge dewatering agent. Ferric chloride is sought after in waste water treatment because it is a superb flocculating and precipitating agent that can absorb colloids, clays, and bacteria.  Furthermore, ferric chloride is also one of the few water treatment chemicals that can sequester odors.

FRP and Ferric Chloride

Fiberglass Reinforced Polymers (FRP) have been used in the construction of corrosion resistant equipment in a multitude of applications including hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, caustic soda, and ferric chloride.  Our FRP offer superior corrosion resistance for ferric chloride at all concentrations.  As such, FRP corrosion resistant tanks are ideal for transportation, handling, and processing of ferric chloride and other corrosive materials. Where steel and other alloys fall short, FRP endures and outperforms conventional materials with lower maintenance costs, longer life cycles, and overall durability.

In the waste water industry, FRP are typically used for clarifiers, basins, tanks, reservoirs, filters(e.g. trickling, roughing, bio), scum baffles, weirs, flumes (e.g. Cutthroat, Parshall, Palmer-Bowlus), influent/effluent channels, gates, stop logs, skimmers and manholes, filter media support grids, elevated platforms and walkways, odor covers, trench and vault covers —among much else.

In the past, ferric chloride tanks were primarily constructed out of rubber lined steel or plastic lined steel, however FRP are now considered a cost-effective alternative that offer many benefits. We offer exceptional FRP that perform well in waste water environments.  Our composites are lightweight, high strength, corrosion/rot resistant, will not swell, or take on moisture, and can be retrofitted to existing municipal and industrial water and wastewater systems.