ASDA slashes water usage for cooling at distribution centres

Recycling water used in evaporative condensers at ASDA’s distribution centre in Lutterworth will reduce water consumption and the discharge of water-treatment chemicals. In addition, electricity consumption will be reduced. The savings are being achieved using a non-chemical treatment from VRTX Technologies to control scale, corrosion and bacteria. The technique is called hydrodynamic cavitation and enables water to be recycled through the system by up to four times. Following a comparison of VTRX units against traditional chemical treatment at Lutterworth, ASDA installed two more units at its Wakefield cold distribution centre and placed orders for a further four centres. All units were due to be commissioned in April 2008, enabling water consumption to be reduced by 70 000 t a year and the discharge of chemicals by 20 t. Electricity consumption will be reduced by 200 MWh and greenhouse gases by over 150 t. The VRTX system relies on kinetic energy, hydrodynamic cavitation and chemical equilibrium to control scale, corrosion and bio-fouling. It also minimises corrosion and micro-biological growth. Evaporative condensers and cooling towers are responsible for over half the world’s non agricultural water usage.
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