Civiltec Engineering, Inc. and contractor R.C. Foster were retained under a design-build delivery method by California Domestic Water Company (CDWC) to select and install a PFAS treatment system. PFAS compounds were identified in CDWC’s Well No. 8 groundwater source, necessitating the installation of a new treatment system to make the source suitable for potable water production.

Upon completing utility and data research along with a hydraulic assessment of the site, Civiltec designed plans to integrate an Ion Exchange (IX) treatment system for the removal of PFAS contaminants. Three IX vessel pairs will be installed in lead-lag configuration, mitigating against any breakthrough concentrations of PFAS constituents above the reporting level. The treatment utilizes beaded resin media with high selectivity for PFAS and requires no regenerate chemicals or brine solutions.

The new IX treatment system is expected to increase frictional head losses to the well discharge piping, resulting in a likely reduction in the production capacity of Well No. 8. Civiltec completed a hydraulic impacts evaluation to estimate the capacity reduction under the new specifications, including the replacement of the existing sand separator, the addition of a new cartridge filter system, and the addition of six new steel pressure vessels containing the treatment resin. Utilizing Civiltec’s design, R.C. Foster will carry out the construction of the new system.

Recent studies demonstrating the adverse effects of PFAS chemicals on human health have resulted in more stringent regulations and lower maximum contaminant levels. Civiltec specializes in a variety of PFAS treatment solutions, including ion exchange.

Shem Hawes, PE takes the lead on the project with David Byrum, PE serving as project principal.