South African company awarded Mauritanian water treatment contract

water treatment

The reverse osmosis (RO) skid system will deliver 62.5 m3 of RO permeate an hour to the process plant

Water treatment firm Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies South Africa has been contracted by a global engineering, procurement and construction management company to design, fabricate and supply a brackish water treatment plant for the second phase of a mine in Mauritania.

The contract calls for 62.5 m3 of reverse-osmosis (RO) permeate to be supplied to the process plant every hour.

A Few Challenges

“This project posed a few challenges owing to its remote location in a desert environment and the client’s request for high-level specifications to ensure premium energy efficiency,” explains Veolia project engineer André Loots.

The treatment process begins with the feed of raw water from on-site boreholes, after which the water is pumped into multimedia filters with feed pumps to undergo prefiltration.

The water is then fed into a filtered water tank before being dispatched through a set of plate heat exchangers. This step is necessary owing to the high ambient temperatures of the area, which can heat the water to temperatures as high as 50 °C.

Prior to RO treatment, the water temperature needs to be reduced to a maximum of 30 °C, which is accomplished by proces-sing the water through a cooling system consisting of two air-cooled chiller systems, each with a plate heat exchanger at the process interface.

Desalinated Water

Once the water has been sufficiently cooled, it is treated in the duplex RO sys-tem, after which the desalinated water is pumped into two desalinated water storage tanks outside the building, ready for distribution to the plant as process water for industrial use.

The plant is due for commissioning at the beginning of 2013.

Source: Mining Weekly

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