Fournier Rotary Press Stands Out in Pittsfield, Massachusetts

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Fournier Rotary Press Stands Out in Pittsfield, Massachusetts


The City of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, had to reduce phosphorus levels in its effluent discharged to the Housatonic River. With the addition of tertiary treatment, 20% more sludge was to be generated. With the existing belt presses dating from 1986, a dewatering upgrade was not only desirable, it was also crucial.


The staff at the WWTP knew they didn’t want centrifuges, because of their high energy consumption and rotation speed. They investigated different dewatering technologies and visited several wastewater plants to discuss with operators. Fournier’s representative, Russell Resources, helped organize a tour of several rotary press installations in New England.

As the superintendent Carl Shaw explains, “The first thing we liked about the Fournier Rotary Press was that it’s totally enclosed, clean and contains odors. Also, talking with operators, we noticed they did not need to babysit the equipment. All of them were very impressed with the Fournier press. In addition, we appreciated the fact that the units were built of several chambers providing redundancy, a quite outstanding feature.” 


A set of four rotary press units, each equipped with six modular dewatering chambers, were selected and delivered in 2020. Following the initial startup, the presses have been running six or seven hours, five days per week, processing an average of 59,000 gallons per day. A quantity of 5 to 7 dry tons of cake leaves the plant every dewatering day, at a dryness between 18 and 23% total solids. Everything met, or exceeded, expectations.

“With the major process upgrades going on in our plant, we’ve been working with a whole lot of vendors. Let’s just say not all of them have made us happy. We’ve been very pleased with Fournier’s service and responsiveness; it’s been a pleasure working with them,” Shaw says.   

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