Custom Fabrication of Clarifiers

Close up photo of a clarifier tank.

Clarifier tanks are used in a variety of applications for wastewater treatment, creating clean drinking water, and removing mining sludge. Custom fabrication of clarifiers can lead to improved results for more efficient end-processes in water treatment. Custom-fabricated clarifier tanks can be designed and developed with your exact specifications and intended uses in mind.

The details and requirements of your tank can be implemented to reflect its purpose from the outset of the custom fabrication process. This way you don’t end up paying for density you don’t need, or volume capacity that doesn’t fit your design.

What Are Clarifiers?

Clarifiers are large tanks that contain both liquids and solids. Clarifiers either remove suspended solids from liquid or add them for thickening. Wastewater treatment facilities use clarifiers to remove contaminants. They are used in a variety of applications.

Pre-treatment Units – Before water enters the main clarifier, substances are added to make small particles clump together into larger clumps that can be more easily removed. Water often sits in these units for a period of time that varies from a few days to several months, to allow biological processes to take place. The unit must be constructed of materials that prevent further contamination during the process.

Potable Water Treatment – Specific types of clarifiers are used for drinking water. They allow heavy particles to settle to the bottom of the clarifier. The bottom layer of sludge must be routinely removed and disposed of. The water then goes through additional processes to make it safe to drink.

Wastewater Treatment – The first stage in wastewater treatment is the removal of solids. Primary clarifiers remove suspended solids and pollutants. Secondary clarifiers, also called sedimentation tanks remove biological growth.

Mining – Wastewater from mining must go through a clarification process to keep sediment and minerals out of lakes and rivers. Clarifiers for mining use allow materials to settle to the bottom of the tank.

Types of Clarifiers

The type of clarifier depends on its function. Most clarifiers can be either round or rectangular. Water can flow through them either horizontally or vertically. Horizontal-flow tanks often contain a skimmer to remove solids as water flows across. Vertical flow tanks pass flow through a layer of sludge or other materials to remove additional particles.

Clarifiers and Corrosion

Clarifiers are continually exposed to corrosive materials, both internally and externally. Anything sitting outside the tank is subject to damage from freezing and thawing. Abrasives in weather can wear and damage surfaces. When liquid flows regularly across a surface, erosion occurs.

Wastewater itself is corrosive. It contains fats, oil, grease, soap, food waste and human organic matter. It includes chlorides and nitrogen compounds that eat away at some forms of metal. Sulfate and phosphate ions can also cause damage. Most wastewater is slightly alkaline because it contains household cleaning agents.

Wastewater also carries biological contaminants. Bacteria can form, and produce chemicals that corrode concrete and iron. Some bacteria can corrode other types of metal. Clarifiers are exposed to many harmful elements, so it’s important they be constructed of the right materials.

Materials Used in Custom Clarifier Fabrication

Stainless steel a great option for custom clarifier fabrication. Here’s why the steel’s properties make it so useful:

  • Extreme tensile strength – It doesn’t have to be thick to be strong.
  • Durability – Steel holds up under constant force and nonstop use.
  • Corrosion resistance – Stainless steel doesn’t rust. It’s suitable for use in marine environments where it’s constantly submerged. Acid doesn’t affect it.
  • Stress resistance – Steel performs well under high heat. and resists stress from harsh weather conditions.

Custom Clarifier Sizes and Finishes

Since clarifiers hold liquids, they must be leak proof. They can also be customized to separate solids or particles that have settled with greater efficiency.

Clarifier tanks can be customized to accommodate different sizes and varying material weights. Additional customization can involve blasting the tanks’ exterior to remove rust, then adding paint or other protective coating for high-quality finishing.

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Swanton Welding can fabricate water separators, clarifiers, and similar projects to your design specifications. For further information on our custom clarifier fabrication, contact us today.