© Air Products
© Air Products

Air Products to supply oxygen equipment for Montreal-based wastewater treatment plant

Air Products will supply oxygen equipment to support an ozone generation site that will remove impurities from wastewater at the Montreal-based Jean-R-Marcotte Wastewater Treatment Plant, believed to be one of the largest of its kind in North America.

The industrial gas giant was selected by the city of Montreal to support the project that treats almost half of Quebec’s wastewater before releasing it into the St. Lawrence River. On average, more than 2.3 million cubic meters of water are released into the river per day.

Specifically, four vacuum swing adsorption (VSA) oxygen plants will be supplied.

Dr. Samir Serhan, Chief Operating Officer of Air Products, said the technology will support the city’s effort to expand a sustainable water purification process to benefit the citizens of Quebec and the wildlife that depends on the St. Lawrence River.

Gases have been used in large-scale water treatment for over a century. One of the earliest examples of this application is the disinfection of drinking water with chlorine gas, whereas modern treatment processes understandably now largely avoid the use of toxic or corrosive chemicals.

Increasing use is being made of two gases that are also part of the natural water cycle: oxygen and carbon dioxide. Oxygen is either used for oxidation processes or it serves as an elixir of life for beneficial microorganisms and aquatic animals in biological processes. Carbon dioxide, on the other hand, performs such diverse tasks as adjusting the pH value of water, hardening drinking water that is too soft, or precipitating soluble components from process water and wastewater. It is also used in the cleaning of membranes and for desalination.

In principle, it is also possible to use air for oxidation processes and to supply oxygen to beneficial microorganisms. But with its high nitrogen content, the effect of ordinary air is limited in many applications. Pure oxygen, on the other hand, accelerates the processes and boosts their efficiency.

For example, oxygen is needed for removing dissolved iron and manganese when treating groundwater to obtain drinking water. If left untreated, these metals would give the water a rusty brown colour and be deposited in the pipes. In biological wastewater treatment, the purification work is carried out by microorganisms. They need oxygen to survive and to be able to break down the pollutants in the wastewater.

Read more: Water treatment – An application thirsty for air gases

Air Products pioneered the concept of on-site oxygen production over 75 years ago and today continues to integrate oxygen generation plants into the operations of industrial and municipal users such as glass, nonferrous metals and steel, cement, pulp and paper, water treatment and other industries.

CO2 Summit 2023

Shortages and sourcing challenges are the headline stories everyone’s talking about in CO2 supply. But the whole carbon dioxide value chain is transforming – as this story itself demonstrates.

Applications are not only emerging and evolving but demanding more of the industry and its sourcing too. That calls for new thinking in CO2 storage and distribution, but it also raises questions over the tracking and management of supply chains. How we see CO2 is changing, shifting from waste disposal to a value chain in its own right. This will see the tonnage utilisation of CO2 evolve beyond recognition.

Join gasworld this September as our North American CO2 Summit 2023 assesses the threats, challenges and opportunities ahead in carbon dioxide – how we find it, source it, purify it and deliver it. Learn about the changing face of CO2; the opportunities in direct air capture (DAC); supply chain strategies; carbon credits and legislation; and so much more.

Tickets are selling fast and sold-out early last year, so book your place now. For more information and how to attend, visit https://gasworldconferences.com/conference/north-american-co2-summit-2023-indianapolis/

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