Process modelling has been used for many years in the chemical engineering field and more recently has become well established for as a tool for analysing and optimising the performance of wastewater treatment works. In the clean water area, models are routinely used for simulating distribution networks. In contrast, however, the use of modelling tools on potable water treatment works is relatively new and has yet to become well established. A range of tools have been suggested, including artificial neural networks, computational fluid dynamics and process simulation.
WRc have developed a dynamic simulation package for predicting the performance of water treatment works, via models of individual processes. The software has a range of uses, including process and works optimisation, operational decision support, as a design aid and for training engineers and operators. The models are dynamic so that they predict the response of the treatment works to changes in flow, raw water quality and process operating conditions.
The software has been used in a wide variety of applications, including optimising process plant operation to minimise cost and to investigate the reasons why a treatment works failed to meet its design criteria at the maximum design throughput.