Here's a Solution for Emergency or Peak Seasonal Needs for Aeration

Aerzen USA offers rental blowers to help wastewater treatment plants meet emergency and other short-term aeration requirements.

Here's a Solution for Emergency or Peak Seasonal Needs for Aeration

Rental units come with all the electrical cable, piping and other components required for a complete installation on the plant site.

Water and wastewater treatment plant teams are well familiar with rental electric power. If there’s an emergency or some other short-term need, call a rental company and order a generator with the necessary power rating; keep it for as long as needed.

Generators aren’t the only equipment available on the rental market. All sorts of items from power tools to earth-moving machinery can be rented. It makes more sense to rent for contingency needs than to try and own every conceivable item.

Now Aerzen USA, a manufacturer of aeration blowers for wastewater treatment, is entering the rental business. Aerzen Rental offers blowers in a wide range of capacities, ready to ship with ancillary equipment to wherever they’re needed.

The units are essentially the same as those Aerzen builds for the new-equipment market. They can supply supplemental air, provide continuity in case of machine breakdowns and help preserve capital. Matt Piedmonte, director of the rental business for Aerzen USA, talked about the offering in an interview with Treatment Plant Operator.

TPO: What is your company’s experience in the blower rental market?

Piedmonte: We have been in the rental business in Europe for almost 20 years. We’ve proven that there is a need and that customers can benefit from rental blowers for wastewater treatment plant aeration. We’re looking to replicate that success in the United States.

TPO: How quickly can you respond to customers’ requests for equipment?

Piedmonte: The business is built for very quick response time. From the time someone places an order and says, “I’m ready to go,” we can load a truck inside of an hour for almost any project. We’ve designed all the componentry so that one person using rigging equipment can manage the loading and manipulation of all the material needed to fill an order.

TPO: From where do your shipments originate?

Piedmonte: Our initial location is in Atlanta. We have plans to spread across the country in the next several years and increase the number of depots as the business grows. From Atlanta, we can ship to anywhere in the United States. All of the equipment is shipped by flatbed. We have a test stand so we can test the units before shipment and ensure they will be reliable and operative when they arrive.

TPO: What are the main features of the blowers you supply for the wastewater market?

Piedmonte: For the wastewater business, we supply rotary-lobe positive displacement blowers. Each unit includes a variable-frequency drive so that users can very accurately control the flow of air into the process. Units come in standard Aerzen sound-attenuated enclosures. The entire fleet has remote monitoring, so we can monitor the machines 24/7 while they run on customer sites. Every blower is oil-free and is outdoor-rated for extreme ambient conditions.

TPO: What is the significance of oil-free equipment?

Piedmonte: Oil-free means there is absolutely no oil in the air introduced to the process. It’s the same kind of air used in pharmaceutical plants and the same kind that can come into contact with food products. The wastewater industry uses almost exclusively oil-free blower equipment. 

TPO: What ancillary equipment is included with the blowers?

Piedmonte: We supply all necessary electrical cable and pipe. When we lay out a project, we determine how far the blower will be from the connection point, the kind of connection point, the size of the flanges and more. It’s like an Erector Set. We send every component the customer needs for setup, including gasket kits and bolts.

TPO: Do you perform installations and provide operational support on site?

Piedmonte: We typically do not travel to customer sites to install equipment. That saves customers the travel time and expense for a technician. The installation is very simple. Since we supply all the pieces of the puzzle, the vast majority of customers can install it on their own. For the others, we can walk them through it over the phone.

TPO: What size of projects can you handle with rental equipment?

Piedmonte: We can handle projects from 100 cfm to essentially unlimited because we can supply multiple machines operating side by side to deliver higher flows.

TPO: What is the advantage of using rental blowers as opposed to standard “plant air” for short-term aeration needs?

Piedmonte: Typical in-plant air compressors are designed to deliver air at about 100 psi. That is significantly different from the 7 to 10 psi required for wastewater aeration. If using plant air compressors in a wastewater application, you’re expending all the energy to compress the air up to that much higher pressure, and then throttling it down to the pressure you actually need. That is very wasteful in terms of energy.

TPO: How can rental blowers help treatment plants avoid capital expenditures?

Piedmonte: Suppose a customer needs a source of air for a year during a plant reconfiguration. Traditionally, they would have to buy a machine, commission it, carry the risk of owning it, carry it on their books and use capital dollars. Today, with the rental option, they could simply rent a machine for that one year. Also, a plant that has a peak season where it might run short on air could bring in a rental unit to provide supplemental aeration for that time period. Rental lets operators think differently: Where do I spend capital dollars? And where do I rely on the rental industry?

TPO: Does Aerzen Rental help customers prepare in advance for situations that would require rental blowers?

Piedmonte: We will build contingency plans where we identify in advance all the things that customers would need to do in the event of an emergency need for compressed air. In some cases, customers need to do work in advance in order to be prepared for an emergency.


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