Valencia Water Reclmation Plant

Los Angeles County Sanitation District 

Customer Background

The Valencia Water Reclamation Plant of the Los Angeles County Sanitation District (LACSD) is a wastewater treatment plant serving over 130,000 people. It provides primary, secondary, and tertiary treatment to upwards of 21 million gallons of wastewater daily. Schneider Electric Energy and Sustainability Services (ESS) will help LACSD reduce energy costs by reducing energy usage at the Valencia Water Reclamation Plant. ESS oversees a large team of design and construction partners, including Enterprise Automation, who helps support the project’s design, construction, and project management requirements.

Project Background

ESS completed an audit of the Valencia Water Reclamation Plant to uncover energy conservation measures (ECMs) throughout the facility. Each was treated as a separate project, with the scope of work ranging from full system upgrades, and application of advanced process control software, to replacing motor control centers (MCCs). LACSD was able to justify several upgrades due to energy savings and return on investment.

Many of the ECMs required upgrades to their existing control systems and control panels. More modern solutions were developed that included new programming approaches, and a new real-time control system (RTC). The RTC is fully automated optimization software that sits above the SCADA and PLC system. It uses data from the control system to make high-level decisions to reduce energy use and create better process conditions. Key points in the control system are adjusted.

EA Solutions

With their deep level of expertise in the water/wastewater industry, EA was originally brought in as a high-level consultant for project I&C and controls oversight to support the design and construction phases. As an extension of the ESS engineering services team, EA was responsible for reviewing the designs by the other OEM manufacturers, developing the commissioning master plan and schedule, and coordinating the contractors. As the project went on, EA became more and more involved in the development tasks of the project. They created and changed PLC programs and helped develop new SCADA screens.

LACSD had developed new plant standards for their newer hardware and software, yet another driving force behind the project. They wanted the ECM programming and graphics to match these updated standards. Once EA’s project scope was expanded, engineers quickly began working with the PlantPAx, FactoryTalk, and Studio 5000 templates, eager to bring additional value and knowledge to the project.


Energy Conservation Measures Implemented at the Site

  • Replaced the obsolete DCS control system on the tertiary filters, with new programming and graphics integrated into the main plant’s Allen Bradley SCADA system.
  • Replaced motor control centers (MCC) or switchboards, integrating Square D (Schneider) MCCs with the existing Allen Bradley SCADA system.
  • Replaced an aeration tank with new equipment and modern controls, including new programming.
  • Adding real-time control (RTC) systems to optimize set points for better process conditions and to reduce energy usage.
  • Replaced an entire building and add in new aeration blowers and panels and associated power distribution.

Key Insights

  • The ECM upgrades were made throughout the wastewater facility, from the aeration tanks to the tertiary filters.
  • EA offered high level consulting services to ESS as control systems and SCADA experts.
  • In addition to coordinating the design and commissioning efforts, EA took on the PLC and SCADA programming changes.

Key Technology

  • PlantPAx
  • FactoryTalk
  • Studio 5000