Water treatment in cooling towers

Gain insight into the importance of effectively treating make-up water and recirculation water in cooling tower operations and explore how intelligent solutions can optimise the water treatment process for enhanced performance.

As we saw previously, cooling is an important process in any industrial production, and cooling towers are found in the majority of installations in industrial sites. Uninterrupted operation of the cooling application is critical to any production facility.

In this module, we’ll see how important it is to ensure the make-up water and recirculation water in cooling tower operation is properly treated, and look at the intelligent solutions that can be used to optimise the water treatment process.

Water that isn’t properly treated can lead to common problems in the cooling system, such as biofilm growth, scaling, corrosion, sludge deposits and legionella-related health risks.

Such issues impact cooling efficiency and can lead to asset deterioration, health hazards and unexpected downtime.

Let’s look at some of these challenges in more detail.
Biological contamination can cause biofilm in the pipes, heat exchanger and other parts of the cooling system, which reduces the capacity of the cooling tower, but also increases the energy consumption.  The second challenge is the increase of the salt concentration, which occurs if you don’t properly monitor and control the conductivity level. And that leads to corrosion and scaling, which results in an even higher energy consumption and service cost.

Finally, how do we handle the chemicals that are used inside the cooling tower?

If you do not dose a correct amount, it could lead to overdosing or underdosing which can cause other issues. These challenges will increase if more and more customers move towards water reuse as a source for cooling tower make-up water.

Grundfos offers a number of smart solutions for treating make-up and recirculated water in cooling tower applications.

The first is measurement and control equipment. Different quality parameters such as temperature, pH, conductivity , ORP and so on need to be regularly monitored in cooling tower applications. This is also needed to show the results of the treatment, and also control the results of the treatment. It’s also needed to document whether the measurement complies with rules and regulations.

Next, there are Grundfos’s precise dosing pumps, which dose exactly the required amount of chemicals into the process. Grundfos dosing pumps with integrated FCM features allow precise chemical dosing as well as dosing monitoring in cooling tower applications. This ensures full control of the chemical dosing process: for example, disinfection, anticorrosion dosing, pH control and so on.

Connecting these dosing pumps to the Grundfos Smart Digital Chempairing Suite (SDCS) enables the operator to manage, monitor and control chemical dosing safely and securely……for example by avoiding mixing chemicals that are potentially dangerous together. Showing what has been dosed into the process once again documents that we comply with local regulations.

Last but not least, with an intelligent system setup and solution, different components are connected together, so they speak the same language and work together to optimise the process.

This is all handled under the umbrella of Grundfos iSOLUTIONS, where we see a need for a different approach and a need to handle entire systems differently in the future.

Course overview

Modules: 4
Completion time
Completion time: 20 minutes
Difficulty level
Difficulty level: Intermediate