Friday, 30 August 2013

Expanding in Africa

Having undertaking a number of projects in north Africa over the last few years I recently visited one of the central African countries to investigate the upgrading of a number of old surface water run-off Oily Water Interceptors at an Oil Fired Power Station.

The station has expanded over the years and has 3 main generating areas now.  Each expansion has involved the use of oily water separation systems to cater for the HFO (heavy fuel oil) and lube oil spillages and the heavy rainfall that occurs in the rainy season.  The clarified water from the Interceptors is discharged to local rivers/streams.

With ever increasing investment being made in Africa, companies are imposing stricter environmental standards to be included with these investments.  Contamination of water courses is especially important as water is a very valuable resource.

The old Minipak Interceptors were manufactured by UK based companies.   CJB Developments in Portsmouth and Environmental Engineering Ltd in Spalding.  Neither of these original companies are in existence anymore so we've specialised in refurbishing and upgrading these old systems.  The main items that fail and disintegrate are the plate packs, which were manufactured in GRP, and the steel inlet flow-distributors that corrode.

HFO is bought into the site by train or truck and the offloading areas are badly contaminated with spilt oil that gets washed into the collection sumps during rainfall.

A couple of the old sumps, showing typical damaged plates from the plate packs are shown below.

The GRP plates in the pack shown below had collapsed completely due to the resin in the GRP being dissolved by solvents in the process.

Stetfield Separators offer a complete range of replacement parts, from individual plate packs to complete packages.  With our standard plate-packs the corrugated plates are manufactured from Polypropylene and these are housed in a stainless steel casing.  The corrugated plates have moulded-in spacer pegs to prevent them from collapsing.  For extended life and improved performance we also manufacture complete plate-packs in stainless steel.

Photos below show new Polypropylene plate packs installed in concrete Interceptor and then a full stainless steel plate pack ready for installation.

In addition to the in-ground Interceptors detailed above, both companies manufactured above-ground units and we have helped refurbish a number of these units also.  We are happy to undertake site surveys in order to assess any requirements for these old systems.  Please contact us if you think we may be of help to you.

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