Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (BGCAPP) utility technicians received a portable water demineralizer May 9 to provide clean plant process water for systemization activities.
“We utilize a portable demineralization unit during systemization when we need to fill the plant’s Process Water Tank,” said Rusty Davis, operations manager, Bechtel Parsons Blue Grass. “It saves the project money to bring one in when we need it, as opposed to buying or building and maintaining our own unit. We will eventually have two of them on the site for the operations phase, due to the increased need for water.”
Paul Baldwin, utility lead mechanical engineer, BGCAPP, compares the demineralization process to using a water-softening system for a house or distilled water in a car radiator or steam iron for clothes, to keep minerals from building up in those systems and causing poor performance.
“Naturally occurring water, such as we receive from the depot, includes dissolved mineral salts,” Baldwin said. “Water used by plant systems needs to have those minerals removed for process and maintenance effectiveness and efficiency.”
Technicians hook up the demineralizer to receive water from the Fire Water Storage Tanks, which receive water from the Blue Grass Army Depot, Davis said. The demineralizer then processes the water through several beds of filtration media. Once demineralized, the water flows into the Process Water Tank, which in turn feeds the boilers, chillers and many other plant systems. The process to demineralize the water and fill the 40,000-gallon tank usually takes about five to six hours.