Produced Water Treatment
Engineering Consulting Services
Vista also has extensive experience with utilities, tankage, and well pad & pipeline development. Our project history includes long-term brownfield programs and multi-phase greenfield expansion projects.
Vista has a long history of engineering some of the most successful processing facilities in the western Canadian energy sector. Our experience includes designing specialized processes to maximize a facility’s ability to reuse produced water.
Reusing produced water is essential to limiting environmental impacts, lowering operating costs, and gaining regulatory approval, especially for commercial facilities.
Vista helps clients analyze their water to select proven technologies and implement a cost-effective, fit-for-purpose solution.
Contaminated Water: An Avoidable Risk
In processing facilities, common contaminants such as calcium and magnesium can combine with silica to form metallic silicates. These precipitate and stick to facility piping, forming a glass-like insulating barrier on the walls.
The insulating barrier inhibits heat transfer, leading to poor performance, dangerous working conditions, equipment damage and ultimately resulting in failures requiring extensive downtime and repair costs.
Filtration is a critical component of many treatment systems. Filters are used to remove solids, liquids, or other contaminants from fluids within a process stream.
The use of inappropriate technologies can lead to inefficient operations, high capital costs, and prohibitively expensive operational expenditures. Vista’s experts leverage our extensive experience and industry contacts to carefully select the best technology to meet the applications of our clients.
- Solids Removal
- Liquid Removal
- Iron, Manganese, and H2S Removal
Secondary Steam Generation
Through extensive consultation with vendors and our clients, Vista has designed a novel water reuse system in which blowdown from a once-through steam generator (OTSG) is used as the feedstock for a secondary OTSG.
After the successful implementation of this high-value design, steam production was drastically increased while wastewater (boiler blowdown) was reduced by 75%.
This system resulted in a substantial net reduction of water usage by the facility.
Vista’s thorough understanding of wastewater chemistry has led to the successful implementation of wastewater reuse systems. In these detailed systems, recycled water and wastewater chemistry are objectively reviewed and decisions are based upon the specific defined components requiring treatment. In some applications, Vista has identified locations where the blending of wastewater and recycled water meets the downstream requirements. This has resulted in a reduction of water treatment equipment. The reduced water treatment equipment significantly lowers capital cost and operating costs for the facility.
Water Use Reductions
Vista has extensive experience in the operation of filters and ion exchange equipment. By leveraging our knowledge with different equipment suppliers and operating facilities, we successfully revised filtration and ion exchange regeneration sequences, which limited the quantity of wastewater generated. In addition, Vista has been involved in the successful design of a novel chemical reuse program, wherein caustic from a weak acid cation (WAC) exchanger is partially reused for several sequential regenerations. This design led to a reduction in operating costs by decreasing the total chemical and water consumption requirements for ion exchange regeneration.
Reduced Liquid Discharge (RLD) Systems
In systems where RLD is required, Vista has investigated the implementation of mechanical vapor compression evaporators, crystallizers, and thermosyphon reboilers. Implementation of these systems enabled the plant to meet the stringent regulatory demands of the jurisdiction.
Water Treatment Technologies
Vista has implemented a wide variety of water treatment technologies as part of our water management systems.
- Solids Settling
- Lime Softening
- Ion Exchange
- Iron & Manganese Removal
- Induced Gas / Static Flotation
Vista has expertise treating water systems with oil and grease, silica, permanent & temporary hardness, suspended solids, iron, multivalent cations, oxygen, and microbiological contaminants.
Technology Investigation Capabilities
Vista was contracted to investigate existing and new technologies to reduce the wastewater volumes at a water treatment and steam generation plant.
A changing regulatory environment and lack of access to a sufficiently sized disposal system were causing the client to explore new water reduction possibilities.
Vista investigated a wide variety of RLD technologies, as well as zero liquid discharge (ZLD) technologies, and formulated 21 process arrangements to find the most cost-effective option.
Our work included:
- technology investigations
- laboratory test design
- water analysis
- bench-scale testing
- capital and operating cost determinations to reach a technology arrangement that was optimized for the client
Conceptual Technology Selection Projects
Clients have trusted Vista with their technology selection for major, industrial water management facilities. These projects considered site-specific water availability and environmental and disposal conditions while ensuring the plant met the area’s regulatory requirements. The technology was recommended based on technical merit, as well as the capital and operating cost considerations. Many of Vista’s industry-leading cost innovations were considered, including piping and equipment modularization, plot plan optimizations, and our data-centric approach to engineering.
Our experience includes designing specialized processes to maximize a facility’s ability to reuse produced water. Reusing produced water is essential to limiting environmental impacts, lowering operational costs, and gaining regulatory approval, especially for commercial facilities.
Vista helps clients analyze their water to select one or more proven technologies and implement a cost-effective, fit-for-purpose solution. Some of Vista’s capabilities include the following techniques and technologies.
Ion Exchange (SAC/WAC)
Vessels containing resin remove hardness ions (calcium and magnesium) as well as other multivalent ions.
Application: hardness removal, multivalent ion removal
Lime Softening (Warm & Hot)
Created using a combination of chemicals, a lime sludge bed reduces and removes a variety of contaminants from inlet water.
Application: silica removal, bulk hardness removal, alkalinity reduction
Removes particulate matter in water streams and in the final stages of hydrocarbon removal.
Application: hydrocarbon removal, iron removal, suspended solids removal
A carefully designed gravity separation system ensures maximum effectiveness of installed residence capacities.
Application: hydrocarbon removal
Induced Gas And Static Flotation
Gas bubbles introduced into a water stream facilitate the flotation of hydrocarbon within the unit. Commonly used as a secondary oil removal process.
Application: hydrocarbon removal
Uses thermal or mechanical energy to create a distilled water stream available for reuse.
Application: total dissolved solids removal
Removes bulk suspended solids from a water stream, resulting in sludge and clean centrate stream.
Application: suspended solids removal
Strips dissolved gas from a water stream, a critical step in meeting water quality requirements for downstream equipment.
Application: dissolved gas removal
Inclined Plate Settler (Lamellar Decanter)
Removes large volumes of solids or particulate matter from a water stream.
Application: particulate removal
Carefully prepared and measured chemicals injected upstream facilitate other separation methods required for the success of downstream processes.
Application: oxygen control, precipitation (e.g. oxidation of iron for filtration), chemical preparation for use (e.g. flocculants)
Produced water treatment and management are increasingly critical factors for the energy industry, as government regulations become stricter. With increasing water scarcity and rising demand from growing populations, industrial facilities are being tasked with the challenges of reducing water usage. This is particularly true for hydraulic fracturing operators who are in need of viable frac water treatment solutions.
What Our Clients Say
Improve your project success with the help of seasoned experts
Business Development Director
All Clients Deserve
A Single Source of Truth
Our unique truth-based industrial engineering execution model facilitates:
- Transparency about projects and assets
- A collaborative problem-solving approach
- High-quality engineering designs
By structuring data in a single-source-of-truth (SSOT) environment, we simplify the digital transformation of your asset and help you make more informed decisions. Learn more about our system integration services.