Emerson to automate Seattle wastewater treatment plants

PITTSBURGH (October 15, 2007) — Emerson Process Management signed a 10-year, multi-million-dollar agreement with King County, Washington State Wastewater Treatment Division, a member of the county’s Department of Natural Resources and Parks. Emerson will automate wastewater treatment plants to improve operations serving more than 1.4 million people within the greater Seattle area.

As part of the collaborative design/supply contract, the terms of which were not disclosed, Emerson will supply, engineer, and install its state-of-the-art PlantWeb digital plant architecture with the Ovation expert control system. Core system installations will occur at two existing wastewater treatment facilities and one new wastewater treatment plant. The plants will be networked together under a regional supervisory process control system, as designed in collaboration by the County, its consultants and Emerson team members.

The comprehensive solution provided by Emerson is a critical element of King County’s long-term master automation plan. Implementation, to occur in several phases, will enable King County to integrate real-time process and equipment data from its treatment plants and other remote facilities on a regional basis. It will also enable King County to integrate enterprise business systems with critical process data, environmental data, and asset information.

Integrating these information layers will ultimately provide greater insight into King County’s processes, assets and overall operations for greater operational flexibility, improved reliability and efficiency. It will also improve the ability to reduce operations and maintenance costs, and maintain environmental and regulatory compliance in the ecologically conscious area.

According to John Berra, president of Emerson Process Management, the adoption of a long-term master automation plan will ensure that King County’s investments in automation technology will be preserved, even as technology continues to evolve. King County’s phased approach also illustrates how municipalities can implement a master automation plan over time, as resources and circumstances allow.

“For this project, we needed a top-flight, experienced supplier that could provide an integrated system across the region – bridging process control, remote operations and information technology – using a single, common platform,” said Rob Mattern, project manager, Information Systems & Process Automation, Wastewater Treatment Division, King County. “Successful track records with projects of this scope, combined with their integrated control architecture, were key reasons for our selection of Emerson as a long-term partner for this program.”

The two existing plants – South Treatment Plant and West Point Treatment Plant – as well as the new Brightwater Treatment Plant, are part of King County’s regional wastewater treatment system serving approximately 1.4 million people across areas of King, Snohomish and Pierce County in Washington State. These plants average approximately 200 million gallons of water per day (MGD) of total wastewater treatment. The South Treatment Plant has a throughput capacity of 115 MGD average wet weather flow, while the West Point Treatment Plant has a throughput of 133 MGD. Brightwater, scheduled to go into service in 2010, will initially have a maximum capacity of 34 MGD; by 2040 the plant will be expanded to provide treatment capacity of 54 MGD.

“We are at a critical junction as we work to bring Brightwater online, address expansion of our conveyance system, and proactively plan and respond to regional growth, storm events and environmental impact,” Mattern explained. “The expertise and knowledge of our staff, coupled with the guidance of our consultants and Emerson’s engineering know-how and Ovation technology, offer the tools we’ll need to optimize our services while controlling costs for our rate payers and continuing on-task as environmental stewards.”

It’s worth noting that this project utilizes a new, high-value engineering and implementation model. From the beginning, King County established a process by which all parties – the County, its engineering consultants and Emerson, the selected automation partner – would work together to design, configure and install the county-wide, Ovation-based automation, control and information technology solution.

“Creating an environment of open communication and shared responsibility among all parties for system engineering and implementation exceeded our initial expectations in terms of meeting critical project goals of managing scope, schedule and budget. Emerson’s professionalism, solutions orientation and industry expertise contributed significantly to this effort,” said Mattern.

In addition to assembling an integrated, world-class regional control system, King County needed to ensure that knowledge transfer takes place among the team members, with the County operations and maintenance staff gaining critical expertise even before plant commissioning. “The Emerson and consultant teams are dedicated to this cause,” Mattern continued.

Emerson’s PlantWeb digital automation solution for King County includes deployment of three (one per plant) Ovation wide area systems to monitor and control a number of plant processes, including primary treatment and sludge handling. For greater efficiency, the new Brightwater facility will be remotely controlled and monitored on nights and weekends from the South Plant using Ovation technology. In addition, each plant’s Ovation solution will collect and integrate information about surrounding pump stations and treatment facilities via a combination of Emerson-supplied Bristol RTUs (Remote Terminal Units) and PLCs. This will provide plant operators with vital information about influent and other variables from these remote facilities. In all, the Ovation systems will monitor and control approximately 20,000-25,000 I/O points.

It is notable that the automation solution will include deployment of digital bus technology, utilizing FOUNDATION fieldbus and DeviceNet industry standard communication protocols to relay information to the Ovation systems from intelligent devices. Standardizing on digital bus technology, which has begun to gain acceptance in the water/wastewater industry, has already been proven in a number of process industries to yield significant initial installation/start-up savings, as well as long-term operational and maintenance cost savings.

Emerson’s AMS Suite: Intelligent Device Manager is another important element of King County’s customized automation solution. For new plant construction, AMS Device Manager streamlines device configuration, thereby contributing to more efficient plant startup. In addition, the AMS Device Manager provides online access to instrument and valve process information, diagnostic status information, and automatic documentation of all field device maintenance information – all contributing to ongoing efficiency of plant operations and maintenance activities.

Beyond its broad portfolio of technologies and devices, Emerson’s Power & Water Solutions industry center will also provide a number of engineering, start-up and installation management services, as well as training, over the course of the agreement.

The first phase of the project, installation of the core Ovation process automation, control and information technology infrastructure, will be installed and commissioned at South Treatment Plant by March 2008. The first operating section retrofit of the South Plant, will be installed and commissioned by September 2008. Following the completion of this phase, over the next five to seven years additional phases at multiple facilities will take place concurrently until all retrofit and new construction is completed.

“Implementing an integrated control architecture enables municipalities, like King County, to build on resources they already have so they can easily meet future needs,” said Berra, who also points out that planning for the stewardship and optimization of assets entrusted to them demonstrates King County’s strong responsibility to ratepayers. “Whether adopting newer treatment technologies, expanding to meet future population growth, or adjusting to increasingly complex financial and environmental regulations, the integrated PlantWeb digital plant architecture with the Ovation control system will help ensure that King County is well equipped to meet the needs of its customers.”

About Emerson Process Management
Emerson Process Management (www.emersonprocess.com), an Emerson business, is a leader in helping businesses automate their production, processing and distribution in the power, water and wastewater treatment, chemical, oil and gas, refining, pulp and paper, food and beverage, life sciences, and other industries.

Emerson's Power & Water Solutions division is a global supplier of advanced distributed process control and information systems. The Pittsburgh-based company is a recognized leader in developing plant-wide process control solutions for the power generation, water treatment and wastewater treatment industries. Power & Water Solutions plays a key role in the Emerson mission of combining superior products and technology with industry-specific engineering, consulting, project management and maintenance services. Emerson brands include: PlantWeb; Ovation; SmartProcess; Fisher; Micro Motion; Rosemount; Mobrey; Daniel, Bristol, DeltaV and AMS Suite.

About Emerson
Emerson (NYSE: EMR), based in St. Louis, is a global leader in bringing technology and engineering together to provide innovative solutions to customers through its network power, process management, industrial automation, climate technologies, and appliance and tools businesses. Sales in fiscal 2006 were $20.1 billion.
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