After fabricating a new design for the Chemical Dose Controller (CDC), this semester’s team consisting of Senior Environmental Engineers Jeanette Liu and Andrea Cashon and Sophomore Chemical Engineer Christine Leu, looks to begin testing this semester.
In an AguaClara plant, the chemical dose controller acts as a semi-automated system that linearly increases the dosage of disinfectant and coagulant with an increase of flow. With this, AguaClara plants can operate at the most efficient chemical dosage levels despite any changes of flow through the plant.
Last semester, CDC fabricated a lighter lever arm, thus making it easier to ship, intended for plants with lower flow rates that do not need coagulant, such as in India. In addition to being light, the head tank must be chlorine resistant due to the AguaClara plants use of Chlorine as a disinfectant. Last semester’s CDC team adjusted a Nalgene water bottle to act as the head tank.
Looking to this semester, CDC anticipates to now test the equipment. One specific concern is that while the body of the Nalgene bottle is chlorine resistant, the cap is not, so additional adjustments and fabrication may be required. One of the current proposed solutions to the corrosion issue is to use a PVC pipe instead of a nalgene bottle and fasten a cap to the bottom of the PVC pipe. Additionally, the CDC team will be looking at testing the LFOM to determine if the size decreases by 10 cm if the linear relationship between the flow into the plant and the dosing still applies. If these test prove the relationship still stands the tank size can be scaled down. The scaled down plant size has the potential to cut construction plants and increase AguaClara plant efficiencies. The overall goal of the semester, however, is to see if all of the small adjustments, such as new eye bolts that are susceptible to corrosion and height adjustments, to the overall system will result in a greater improvement to the plant.
Eventually, the team hopes to make an equipment list and a guide to send out to plants on how to construct the improved CDC system.