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Integrating UV Disinfection into Existing WTPS: An Electronic Tool to Assist Water Utilities in Decision Making

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This research (funded by the American Water Works Association Research Foundation) investigated the issues associated with implementing UV disinfection at existing water treatment plants (WTPs). Although the UV Disinfection Guidance Manual provides information on how to implement UV disinfection, it does not provide decision logic to help utilities determine their feasible retrofit locations and site-specific implementation issues. These issues were integrated into an electronic, web-based decision tool that assists utilities in understanding site-specific concerns associated with retrofitting UV disinfection into their WTP. The UV Disinfection Implementation Tool (UVDIT) can be used by filtered and unfiltered utilities to evaluate existing infrastructure, hydraulic limitations, water quality variability, power source limitations, and lamp breakage issues. The decision logic for the tool is based on previously identified design issues, a risk analysis, and a utility survey.

The first step a user takes when using the tool is to input water quality, flow, and WTP configuration information. Based on the input data, the UVDIT estimates the UV facility footprint, number of UV reactors needed, the size of these UV reactors, and the anticipated headlosses for the UV reactors and the entire UV facility. Using this information, the user then answers a series of questions about their existing infrastructure, hydraulics, preferences for addressing additional hydraulic requirements, power quality, pressure surge conditions, and cost indices (e.g., labor hourly rate). Based on these inputs, the following outputs are presented to the user:

Feasible retrofit locations for UV disinfection

Potential risks of UV disinfection at each retrofit location

Mitigation methods that may reduce these risks

Estimated costs for each retrofit option

A cost comparison of the retrofit options

In addition to the tool outputs, there is a detailed “help page” system that further explains the design issues and concerns a utility should consider during its initial evaluation of UV disinfection.

This paper includes the elements of the UVDIT development, the decision trees used to program the UVDIT, an overview of how to use the UVDIT, and a case study from an operating WTP that includes the inputs and outputs for the UVDIT.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/193864705783978302

Publication date: January 1, 2005

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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