Siemens’ EM plant expansion appeared to require a complicated building addition to accommodate increased wastewater generated from a proposed new process and 3,000 square-foot plating line expansion.  GZA was retained to conduct a high-level feasibility study on a fast-track timeline to evaluate capacity of the existing wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) and develop alternatives for the design team.


GZA and other members of the civil, structural, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing team conducted a three-day site visit to ascertain key conditions and constraints for the feasibility study.   Focused on-site meetings with the client and analysis of field conditions allowed the team to quickly identify potential scenarios.  GZA’s engineer evaluated the influent wastewater flows, operation, and capacity of the existing treatment systems unit processes.  In addition to wastewater from the electroplating operations, the wastewater plant accepted discharges from an iron phosphate cleaning line for the powder paint system, a cleaning line for the epoxy paint system, scrubber water, and sanitary waste.  Review of the calculated increase in flow from the proposed expansion of the electroplating line identified that the increased flow and loading would require a permit modification, an expansion of the Membrane Filtration System (MFS), and a larger sludge dryer.  In addition, GZA recommended the replacement of the existing effluent pumps station, replacement and rerouting of the effluent force-main.  A cost estimate was prepared and used by Siemens as part of their decision to mothball the existing plating line following completion of the new plating line. 


GZA’s experienced wastewater treatment engineering expert conducted the on-site and follow up assessments required to successfully move the plant expansion development project forward. The WWTP feasibility study outcome was a streamlined approach that avoided costly demolition and supported a fast-track design schedule.   The expansion and cost of the wastewater treatment improvements will be used by Siemens for phasing in the operation of both plating lines in the future.  The proposed modification to the effluent pumping system and permit modification based on the future calculated flow will be completed as part of the initial phase of the work.