For Light Industry, Geotube Dewatering Technology Provides An Effective Solution

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Courtesy of TenCate Geosynthetics Netherlands bv

For many industrial applications, dewatering is a necessary evil. It disrupts operations, adds cost, and requires complicated and expensive equipment. But this doesn't have to be the case. There's a much simpler, less expensive approach to the task.

It's called Geotube dewatering technology, and it's been used in a broad range of industries. Geotube dewatering technology can be a temporary or permanent operation, and it can reduce the volume of waste materials as much as 90%. It can even be used to dewater hazardous materials.

TenCate develops and produces materials that function to increase performance, reduce cost, and deliver measurable results by working with our customers to provide advanced solutions.

For example, a chemical plant in Texas was faced with the challenge of cleaning a hazardous waste tank every 90 days. The belt presses used for this task in the past were expensive, complicated, and unreliable. And because of space limitations, the company felt it had few other options.

However, by using Geotube  dewatering technology in roll-off boxes, the plant was able to use space in a parking lotfor the dewatering operation. A series of Geotube containers in roll-off boxes were manifolded together to handle the volume, and the process was completed in just a few days. Since it was already contained in the roll-offs, the solids were easily hauled away to a waste facility.

The first operation using Geotube dewatering technology was completed in five days. The second time the facility used Geotube dewatering technology, it was able to complete the operation in just three days. Each time, the company reported savings in excess of $60,000 over the previous dewatering methods used.

'One of the big advantages of Geotube dewatering technology is that it can be sized to fit the project,' notes Tom Stephens, Vice President of Business Development for TenCate, manufacturer of Geotube dewatering technology. 'If the operation requires massive amounts of capacity, we can do it. If a facility just needs dewatering once every quarter, we have the system for this, too.'

Stephens said that often his company is contacted when plant operations expand and outpace the original capacity of lagoons or drying beds. He said that often his company is contacted when plant operations expand and outpace the original capacity of lagoons or drying beds.

'We have plant managers who are faced with finding a dewatering solution or shutting down,' he said. 'Their drying beds or lagoons just aren't big enough. But one of the real values of Geotube dewatering technology is that it can provide a quick lagoon cleanout solution, or it can add capacity by making drying beds much more efficient.

'In some cases, companies have dewatered the material in their lagoons using Geotube dewatering technology, then used the solid-filled Geotube containers as berms to expand the capacity of their lagoons. There are many ways to use the efficiency of this technology, and we work with companies to find the best solution for their operations.'

Dewatering efficiency can be improved because Geotube containers protect the dewatered solids from becoming saturated again in wet weather. And Geotube containers can be stacked on top of each other to further add capacity to a facility.

Larger Geotube containers, when filled, also make solids removal easy. A Geotube bag can simply be opened and material scooped out with a backhoe.

A simple test can be used to determine how well the dewatering technology will work with a particular material. ATenCate Geotube representative can work with an organization to administer the test and to provide suggestions as to the best dewatering approaches.

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