An plant modernization project to upgrade the Romanian infrastructure, which is supposed to be finalized by 2023
By Daniel Preda and Cristian Ionica, Apa Serv Valea Jiului SA
The water treatment plant Valea de Pesti is the main source of drinking water for more than 100,000 people, representing around 80 % of the total population in the area in Jiu Valley, an area in the southern part of the historical Transylvania region. The raw water comes from a 4.2 million cm3 storage lake, leaving this station via two DN800 main pipelines. Both pipelines narrow the diameter to DN600 after 11 km. The total length of these two lines are 33 km and 22 km respectively.
This area is special as it was developed as an industrial mining area, and most of the people live in cities. The coverage area for drinking water and sewage is 99 %, which is much higher than the average value for the entire country. In 2011, a major project financed by EU funds started with the aim to rehabilitate and modernize Romania’s infrastructure. This project has many stages, and it is supposed to be finalized in 2023.
As the water treatment plant was never modernized since its construction in 1970, this EU program served a great opportunity of implementing new technologies, new materials and of assuring an optimization of the entire station. The necessity of this investment was essential; the technical conditions of the stations’ equipment formed a real risk to the continuity of drinking water supply for a great part of the population. In a worst case scenario, instead of having continuous water supply, they could face as little as four hours per day. Moreover, new technologies and materials would help raising the quality of the drinking water served to the population, and would benefit a process of reutilizing the secondary products resulting from the water treatment process.
This process was a major gain of the project, as the filter cleaned water is now reintroduced into circuit through the lamellar decanter, and the resulting sludge is processed in a sludge station, where it is reused for various purposes.
Below you can see the 'before project'-conditions of the 1970’s construction of Valea de Pesti - a jeopardy to the quality and continuity of drinking water supply to the people of the Jiu Valley.