Process Modelling for Water Treatment Professionals

IWES, University of Queensland, WaterAid Modelling

Target Audience

There is an assumed level of knowledge for this course. Please consult the AqMB User Guide if uncertain whether your level of experience is adequate. Process engineers, consultants and operators involved in concept design, sizing and/or operation of existing physico-chemical water treatment plants involving conventional (settling, filtration), membrane, resin, electrolytic or thermal technologies.


This is an interactive full-day course built around forecasting water quality and addressing treatment plant performance issues arising from changing feed water conditions. Engineers will learn to understand the influence of water chemistry on process design and how to use this knowledge to optimise performance. Participants will also design new treatment plants and size equipment using a comprehensive software that integrates material and heat balancing, equipment sizing, stream property and solubility prediction.

Each module includes realistic scenarios for advanced water treatment applications including boiler feedwater, cooling water blowdown, industrial wastewater, seawater desalination, mine dewatering and brine management. Up to 21 technologies in water treatment will be explored during the sessions. Participants will receive detailed notes for each module and a 3 month free subscription to AqMB process simulation software for water treatment.

Learning Objectives

Module 1 – Configuring flow sheets for design or modelling purposes

Overview of each unit operation, their key process parameters how they are used in each model to design new equipment or simulate equipment performance

The impact of dissolved gases on redox and equilibrium chemistry and how process kinetics can affect scale formation and corrosion
Understanding the interaction of species under different conditions and what does this really mean for the performance of each unit operation.

Module 2 – Sizing equipment for vendor pricing

For a given feed water specification, learn to generate a first pass integrated process design and mass balance
Optimisation of first pass designs by refining process design parameters for each unit operation to achieve sustainable operation and lower operating costs
Production of datasheets for equipment pricing by vendors.

Module 3 – Creating a Concept Design Report

Compare treated water qualities from several designs on a single flow sheet
Model boundary conditions to establish the performance limitations of a process
Analyse key equipment performance parameters for each unit operation at each boundary condition
Refine the process design to cater for boundary conditions or the feed water quality envelope
Generate a Process Design Report for your application.

Module 4 – Predictive Analytics for Operators

Model a process using a complete feed water analysis and determine the impacts of trace elements, metals or dissolved gases on effluent or treated water quality
Learn how to adjust operating process parameters to avoid scale formation and optimise plant performance for changing feed water quality
Perform a time series calculation to forecast chemical consumption and determine when process consumables such as membranes and resins may need cleaning due to scaling or replacement due to degrading treated water quality.