Saturday, 24 September 2011

Twin Track

I've just accepted an Associate Professorship in Environmental Engineering at Nottingham University. I'll be starting there soon, but I intend to continue to provide consultancy services via Expertise Limited just as before.

I'm working this weekend, producing a boiler water treatment plant specification, and investigating the sufficiency of design capacity of a proposed package plant.

This second issue brings up the lack of standardisation of the supposed British Standard BS EN 12566-3. It doesn't mean what people think it means. It only means that the unit removed a certain percentage of pollutants for a given flow of domestic sewage under test conditions. Capability in dealing with variations in flow and load, its reaction to extended periods off-line, and many other things it would be nice to know about cannot be inferred by the granting of such a certificate.

This British version of what is intended to be a harmonised European standard is inferior to its German and even French versions. As ever, buyer beware!

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

EA negotiations

Another good ammonia lab result, client is about to start negotiations with the EA to start discharging to river from the fixed package plant.

Then we can get on to phase five of the seven phases of a project, which are reputedly:

1. Wild enthusiasm
2. Disillusionment
3. Confusion
4. Panic
5. Search for the guilty
6. Punishment of the innocent
7. Promotion of non-participants

I usually get called in around stage 4...

Thursday, 8 September 2011


Laboratory results in from the upgraded package plant: SS 10mg/l BOD 2mg/l  NH3 2 mg/l vs. consented values of 30:20:10. Quality!

Is our water evil?

...or is bottled water a mug's game? asks

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Business more or less as usual

I'm off down to look at the upgraded package plant today - other than that things are quiet at the moment.

The plant's performance seems to have stabilised (despite the amateur attentions of tanker drivers and others)and hopefully it will be in a condition to start discharge to environment soon. If this is the case, there will be one last confined space entry to check the new discharge pumps over, and set the maximum flow to the consented value.

I found the relevant person and information for UU, and put something in place, but now I am waiting on the inertia inherent in the systems of large companies.

I'm preparing for an interview for an academic job, which I will (if I am successful) run in tandem with my work for Expertise Limited.