Wastewater specialists Aerofloat are finally seeing the results of a custom-built wastewater treatment system in South Australia after constructing it during the pandemic.
Aerofloat were approached by property owners Scentre Group to solve a wastewater problem at its Westfield West Lakes shopping centre food court in Adelaide.
Michael Anderson, Aerofloat general manager, engineering and operation, said Scentre Group had caught wind of the company’s work with difficult wastewater projects before reaching out.
The team looked at the space and concluded they would need more equipment and more processes to make the small space work for the customised wastewater treatment tanks.
“The client appreciated that we were able to provide a solution for a space that they thought would be too tricky and within budget, they were satisfied and that is how we got the project,” said Anderson.
“They had some existing grease traps, but they assumed it was a small space for what they perceived to be a big problem, so they came to us thinking we could fit something into that small space for them.
“It was a tight spot and through a lot of work with the centre group architectural team we designed a system to fit the tight space.”
The Aerofloat team also had to address a situation which is unique to South Australia.
Every other state categorises shopping centre food courts as a commercial customer and food manufacturers as industrial customers, except in South Australia.
After calculating everything they needed, such as tank volumes needed for the tight space, the Aerofloat team was ready to progress to the next phase when the COVID pandemic struck.
Thankfully the company was able to adapt to the challenges posed by the pandemic, with many shopping centres suffering closures during lockdowns.
“We progressed with the project through covid by doing a lot of remote work with the client and we travelled to South Australian whenever we could,” said Anderson.
“The footprint was quite small, but we had a lot of height to work with so instead of putting in lower cost tanks that would take up more space, we had custom build stainless steel tanks that were quite tall.”
In order to create access to the top of the tanks for maintenance the Aerofloat team added more customisation.
“We need to access the top of one of those tanks for maintenance, what was unique in terms of design was we designed a platform that we suspended off the top of one of the tanks,” said Anderson.
“And then we were able to access that platform from a walkway on the roof which is unique.”
Despite being able to complete the project through the pandemic the system didn’t have a chance to be fully operational until recently, proving it truly meets the industrial standards of South Australia.
“We got the plant ready, but it was left until just the last few weeks when we got it running, because there wasn’t a lot of wastewater coming through until then,” said Anderson.