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Cooling Towers: In the swim with Dolphin

Published: 1 October 2007 - 00:00
BAC Balticare and US-based Clearwater Systems Corp, the developer of the Dolphin water treatment technology, have formed a partnership to introduce the system into the UK and Ireland and several other European countries.
Cooling Towers: In the swim with Dolphin
THE Balticare Dolphin system is a new water treatment programme for BAC cooling towers and evaporative condensers that controls scaling, corrosion, fouling and bacteriological growth.

BAC says it boasts many technical, economic and environmental benefits when compared to traditional all- chemical programmes. Fully automatic, it does not require water softening, actually saves water and is said to use only a small amount of a single chemical.

The Dolphin system can be retrofitted to treat existing cooling water systems as well as new ones and it satisfies the UK-Approved Code of Practice and Guidance L8 for the control of legionella bacteria.

Major life-cycle cost savings are claimed for the Balticare Dolphin system; costs for chemicals and water are reduced and service and maintenance costs are lower.

The environmental benefits include very low power usage, greatly reduced use of toxic chemicals and minimal chemical contamination in water going to drain.

The Dolphin Series 3000G uses a physical method of treating water by imparting high frequency electromagnetic energy (pulsed power) into flowing water, thereby transforming the crystal structure of mineral precipitates.

When the water is at saturation, the minerals precipitate as colloids around small particles in the water that do not adhere to the surfaces of the cooling tower as scale but flow through the system as ‘powder’ which is collected by the sidestream filtration unit.

The Dolphin controls bacteriological growth by two methods: microbes are drawn into the nucleation of the minerals around the small particles in the water thus encapsulating the bacteria so that they cannot reproduce and the high pulse frequency damages and eventually ruptures cell membranes resulting in the bacterial cell being non-viable. Both methods are physical and said to be effective against all species. Bacterial counts are kept low and there is claimed to be virtually no biofilm.

Corrosion is controlled by maintaining the water chemistry at or close to the saturation point of calcium carbonate. At this level, the water is naturally non-corrosive. Furthermore there is no aggressive oxidising biocide in the water which is often the source of corrosive attack in cooling towers and evaporative condensers.

The Dolphin is a full-flow unit that fits directly into the cooling system recirculating pipework. It requires no additional pumping power, has no moving parts, consumes very little power and is almost totally silent.

The Balticare PF64 sidestream separator package is a key component in maintaining the cleanliness and clarity of the recirculating water by filtering out sediment and the ‘powder’ developed by the Dolphin unit. The separator package is fully assembled on a skid-mounting with integral pump, control panel and automatic purge control. The separator is a cyclone type which removes particulates down to as small as 45microns. The separator package is best used in conjunction with sweeper pipework in the sump of the cooling tower.

The sweeping action of the filtered water is designed to prevent sediment and powder from settling in the sump and is said to ensure clean, clear recirculating water and less physical cleaning of the cooling tower or evaporative condenser.

A Balticare BCP-1E automatic bleed control and dosing unit accurately controls the required bleed-off of water as well as timed dosing of a chemical biocide. A small amount of secondary biocide, 1-2 litres/week for most systems, is dosed to satisfy the Guidance in L8 that physical methods should have a secondary biocide to provide a dispersive biocidal effect throughout the system.

The Balticare Dolphin system maintains the water quality at or near the saturation level which, for most installations, means the system can be run at higher cycles of concentration. This reduces the volume of bleed-off and saves water.

The seperator package is fully assembled on a skid-mounting


The system lowers the costs and complexity of water treatment for cooling towers and evaporative condensers in a way that has never been available before, says the company. In a typical hard water area chemical costs are said to be reduced by 90%, water usage is 15-20% less and the capital and running costs for the water softener are eliminated. Because the Dolphin has no moving or wearing parts, there are further cost savings for service and maintenance.

Bacteriological levels are maintained at 104 cfu/ml or lower with legionella bacteria being non-detectable which together meet the Guidance in L8 for legionella control in cooling water systems.

Balticare Ltd 01895 814777

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