PTG Spotlight: No Drop Left Behind

PTG Spotlight - Sustainable Silicon Valley

PTG Spotlight: No Drop Left Behind – Sustainable Silicon Valley is honored to have PTG Water & Energy as a sponsor for No Drop Left Behind. PTG specializes in integrating water and energy operations of municipal and industrial facilities, creating water-energy platforms that reduce waste, cut costs, and ultimately deliver attractive returns on investment.

PTG is known for novel innovation using cogeneration technology, whereby waste heat, from onsite electricity generation, is utilized for additional processes rather than being allowed to escape into the environment.   For example, PTG Combined Heat and Power (CHP) systems, divert the hot exhaust gases from on-site electricity generation to heat water. The resulting hot water is essentially free to produce, and can serve as an input to other industrial processes.

PTG’s patented wastewater disinfection system, also cleverly utilizes cogeneration. In this system, the exhaust heat from on-site electricity generation is continually reused to heat and thereby efficiently disinfect wastewater. The system runs on either onsite renewable biogas, or low-cost natural gas, and results in a much lower electricity demand for the wastewater treatment facility.

PTG Water & Energy’s technologies are very positive from a sustainability perspective, because they greatly increase the efficiency of resource use by reducing waste and supporting water reuse. This means less consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

PTG Spotlight: No Drop Left Behind

PTG Water & Energy Selected as Gold Sponsor for January 26-27 2017 MBAA Joint Technical Meeting

Next week, the Northern and Southern California Districts of the Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA) will hold their annual Joint Technical Meeting in Paso Robles. PTG Water & Energy, an innovator of onsite power generation systems, will be there, helping to sponsor this important meeting.

January 16, 2017

PTG Water & Energy (PTG), innovator of onsite power generation technology optimized for craft breweries, has been selected as a Gold Sponsor for next week’s MBAA Joint Technical Meeting in Paso Robles, California. Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA) members include professionals in the brewing and allied industries along with full-time students pursuing training related to the brewing industry.

The MBAA has about 25 regional districts across the Americas, with California’s members organized into two districts. At least annually, the California Districts get together for a Joint Technical Meeting, which gives their members the opportunity to network with brewers, owners and decision makers from 200 craft breweries in the State of California. Also invited are distributor members, brewery startups and UC Davis Food Science & Technology students as well as students of the UC Davis Extension Master Brewers Program.

This event will start around noon on January 26, 2017 and run through 5:00 pm on January 27, 2017. The host venue will be Spring Hill Suites in Atascadero, California. For more information, please follow this link to the California MBAA Technical Conference.

Representatives from PTG will be also setting up an informational booth at this event. We welcome everyone to stop by and learn more about PTG’s cost savings solutions for craft brewers. This includes seeing how Golden Road Brewery has been able to save more than 50% on their electric and gas bills with their recent installation of PTG’s B-200 system.

PTG Water & Energy: the only modular and scalable CHP system optimized for craft breweries
Controlling energy and water costs while creating the highest-quality beer is crucial for the nation’s craft brewers. PTG’s optimized systems can reduce electricity and heating costs in breweries by more than 50 percent. The systems also offer the additional advantage of treating wastewater and reducing sewer charges, which enables water to be recycled to reduce freshwater costs. PTG’s wastewater treatment systems are sustainable and non-toxic, and require no chemicals. All of PTG’s systems are easy to integrate into existing brewing processes.

The craft brewing industry is experiencing tremendous growth, led by craft brewers such as Golden Road. 2015 data on U.S. craft brewing growth released by the Brewers Association, a trade association that represents small and independent American craft brewers, showed continued rapid growth. Craft brewers increased volumes more than 6 percent in 2015, representing a total of 24 million barrels, and a 6 percent increase in retail dollar value. Combined craft brewing volumes represent a 12.3 percent market share in the U.S.

About The Master Brewers Association of the Americas
The Master Brewers Association of the Americas (MBAA) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) professional, scientific organization dedicated to advance, support, and encourage scientific research into brewing malt beverages and related industries and to make that research available to the public through conferences, discussion groups, journals, publications and seminars. MBAA’s mission is to leverage the collective resources of the brewing community to continually improve the processes and products of our membership by being the recognized leader in brewing education and technical information.

About PTG Water & Energy
Located in the San Francisco Bay Area, PTG Water & Energy is a rapidly growing company that designs and markets CHP and wastewater solutions for a number of industrial markets. PTG’s process is able to deliver the most energy-efficient and lowest-cost solution on the market. PTG’s technology enables tremendous cost savings in water and energy intensive industries such as craft beer, agriculture, and food processing. PTG has won numerous awards including the Water Environment Federation (WEF) Innovative Technology Award, the Katerva Award, the Artemis Top 50 Water Tech award, and the Popular Science “Best of What’s New” award. For more information, see, and follow us on Twitter (@PasTechGroup) and Facebook.


WE&RF Technology Spotlight


PTG’s 350-gallon per minute full-scale demonstration unit at the Ventura Water Reclamation Facility in Ventura, CA.

PTG’s 350-gallon per minute full-scale demonstration unit at the Ventura Water Reclamation Facility in Ventura, CA.

What is your technology?

Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG) applies cogeneration principals to the problem of disinfecting wastewater using a process that is safe, toxic free, and has a low carbon footprint. First off, PTG’s systems generate low-cost electricity to save energy costs by tapping available biogas, natural gas, or both. Secondly, the systems channel exhaust heat to disinfect wastewater to meet California’s Title 22 recycling water standards at no additional cost, saving operating and maintenance expenses, such as chemical purchases, power consumption, labor, and consumables. The combined cost savings generate a positive cash flow stream that rapidly pays for the system capital cost.

What are the benefits to implementing your technology?
PTG’s systems increase efficiencies in wastewater treatment processes, lower associated carbon footprint, and eliminate harmful chemicals. Taken together, these outcomes lower economic costs, increase opportunities for water reuse, and support cleaner, safer environments. In particular, our technology:

  • Reduces dependence on high cost grid-based electric power – wastewater treatment plants can use onsite biogas or low-cost natural gas to generate electricity at a lower cost compared with purchasing grid-based power from a third-party provider.
  • Channels exhaust heat from onsite electric generation to disinfect wastewater at no additional cost – this eliminates operating and maintenance costs traditionally incurred for disinfection, such as chemical purchases for chlorine-based systems, electric power consumed in ultra-violet and ozone processes; this also reduces associated labor costs and consumables such as replacement parts.
  • Increases electric reliability – the chances of power outages are lowered by adding site-owned and controlled electric generating resources while maintaining access to existing third-party controlled resources from the electric grid.
  • Employs a patented process that makes wastewater disinfection energy efficient – basically, thermal energy embedded in disinfected wastewater is recycled over and over in PTG’s efficient patented process. Combined with the use of either onsite biogas or clean burning natural gas, the technology will help lower carbon footprint and emissions.
  • Takes advantage of heat-based disinfection ultimate efficacy – sufficient levels of heat applied to wastewater through the process of pasteurization has been proven to eliminate virtually all harmful micro-organisms, including pathogens that may survive other disinfection methods. Basically, applying the principals of pasteurization – that is, by heating wastewater to appropriate temperatures – will result in sterile water.
  • Produces California Title 22 recycled water – water treated in PTG’s disinfection system can be made immediately available for non-potable reuse.
  • Allows for the elimination or significant reduction of harmful chemicals in many situations – which will make the workplace environment safer and, in the cases of discharge, will reduce water contamination and pollution.

For more information, please see

PTG’s commercial disinfection system capable of treating more than 500,000 gallons per day at Graton Community Services District in Sonoma County, California.

PTG’s commercial disinfection system capable of treating more than 500,000 gallons per day at Graton Community Services District in Sonoma County, California.


Has the technology been tested, demonstrated, or implemented anywhere to date?
Yes, PTG’s systems have been piloted at several municipal wastewater treatment facilities, and PTG has completed its first commercial system sale.

For two years, covering late 2011 through 2013, PTG’s 350-gallon per minute full-scale demonstration unit was successfully operated 24 hours/day and 7 days/week at the Ventura Water Reclamation Facility in Ventura, CA. This project involved Carollo Engineers who prepared reports and presented case studies on the results. This same pilot unit was operated from March 2015 through November 2015 for the Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence Project: Pasteurization for the Production of Class A Water project at Melbourne Water’s Western Treatment Plant in Melbourne, Australia. Reporting on this pilot study was completed in 2016.

From July 2015 through March 2016, PTG’s 20-gallon per minute pilot system was included in the Ventura WaterPure Demonstration Facility Direct Potable Reuse project at the Ventura Water Reclamation Facility. In 2015, PTG commissioned its first commercial system at Graton Community Services District in Sonoma County, California. The system’s design capacity allows for treatment of more than 500,000 gallons per day.

What are some of the next steps needed to advance the technology?
Additional municipal wastewater treatment commercial sales and deployments, particularly for increasingly larger systems, is the most important goal, which will enable scaling up of the technology. As well, piloting on other direct potable reuse projects would help develop the best uses for PTG’s technology in these important applications which are just now beginning to gain traction. Finally, introduction of PTG’s disinfection technology in industrial and other locally distributed systems is an important future step, particularly to determine both optimal applications as well as the best matching of PTG’s technology with upstream industrial wastewater treatment processes developed by other companies.

How has LIFT helped, or how can LIFT help?
We were recently accepted into LIFT, and we are hoping to communicate directly with interested parties through the program. As a small company, PTG relies on networking in professional organizations such as WE&RF in order to meet people who we can help, and who can help us.

Pioneering pasteurization technology features at BlueTech Forum – Blue Tech Forum

Source: Pioneering pasteurization technology features at BlueTech Forum – Blue Tech Forum

A California-based company which is pioneering pasteurization as a third-stage wastewater treatment will be among those attending the BlueTech Forum in June. Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG) has patented a two-for-one process, which heats wastewater to kill pathogens as well as generating lower cost power for municipal or industrial treatment plants.

The company has been chosen as one of eleven innovative clean tech companies, which will be featured in the Innovation Showcase in San Francisco.

Greg Ryan, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of PTG said: “Taking part in the BlueTech Forum is a great opportunity for PTG to cross-pollinate with others in the industry. It is also particularly welcome to have this event happening in California – where the issues of water shortage, water recycling and water reuse have never been more pressing.”

Heat recycling with electricity generation

The PTG system, which has been successfully used by both industrial and municipal users, combines eco-friendly wastewater disinfection with renewable energy generation. The patented system runs on natural gas or biogas and heats wastewater to 74-80oC, killing microorganisms and pathogens.

The wastewater treatment system is designed to recycle heat, making it extremely energy efficient. Water is treated to a high standard making it available for reuse.

Greg Ryan said: “The system recycles heat over and over.”

“The PTG system is a chemical-free, non-toxic way of disinfecting water which is a real alternative to other tertiary treatments such as UV, which uses electrical energy and chlorine, which leaves residual traces in water.”

The PTG system was installed in a large-scale pilot project at the City of Ventura in a wastewater plant processing 1.9Ml per day. The results suggest a full-sized PTG system could generate enough electricity to power the whole plant – at half the current cost of US$900,000 per year. Using pasteurization would also save the city US$250,000 a year on chemical costs.

In 2014 the first full-size PTG system was installed at Graton, California. Another pilot project has taken place in the City of Melbourne, Australia during 2015, where the pasteurization process has been found effective against giardia and cryptosporidium.

At Golden Road, the largest craft brewery in Los Angeles, a PTG B-200 system was installed this year, generating 200kWh of electricity to supply 90 percent of the brewery’s needs. Electricity costs will be reduced by 60 percent while boiler costs will be reduced by 80 percent. The savings will add up to more than US$9m over 20 years, helping the brewery to become energy neutral.

Expansion potential

Greg Ryan said: “Becoming energy neutral is becoming a goal for many industries and utilities around the world which is one of the reasons we believe there is great potential for this technology. Pasteurization treats wastewater to a high standard, which means it can be reused and recycled – for agricultural uses for example.

“In future the company is looking to expand into other markets, to find new industrial partners and attract investors. Pilot projects are also currently taking place into using this technology as part of the drinking water treatment process.”

Paul O’Callaghan, founder and CEO of BlueTech Research said: “Wastewater processing is energy intensive so there is a great deal of potential for innovations which target the water energy nexus.

“In the right circumstances PTG can substantially cut energy costs as well as providing an effective low cost alternative to other forms of tertiary stage wastewater treatment. The fact that PTG can off-set electrical energy use and use waste heat from combined heat and power facilitates presents a compelling value proposition.

Innovation awards

Two of the companies featured in the Innovation Showcase will be chosen to receive the BlueTech Disrupt-O-Meter Award and the BlueTech Truffle Award and will be invited to join the Innovation Pavilion at the Water Environment Federation Technical Exhibition & Conference – WEFTEC – in New Orleans in September.

BlueTech Forum is taking place on 1st June in San Francisco.

Is Pasteurization The Key To Water Reuse

From The Editor | November 19, 2015

Peter Chawaga - editor

By Peter Chawaga, Associate Editor, Water Online


In the summer of 1864, French chemist Louis Pasteur was vacationing in the small eastern town of Arbois where he found the local wines too acidic for his palette. Ever the man of science, Pasteur experimented with the wine and found that moderately heating it killed microbes and prohibited souring. The process became known as pasteurization in his honor and is still widely used in the dairy and food industries to reduce pathogens and prevent spoilage.

Though the low-tech method has been around for over 150 years, a novel application may be on the horizon for the water industry. Andrew Salveson, PE and water reuse chief technologist at Carollo Engineers, explored pasteurization as a treatment method for recycling water in his WEFTEC presentation of “Getting Hot — The Expansion Of Pasteurization For Potable And Non-Potable Reuse.”

Salveson’s presentation, based on a project he’s conducting along with 15 other researchers, built on a growing industry reputation he has as an authority on reuse. Indeed, this project comes hot on the heels of another one he’s conducting for the Water Research Foundation on the blending requirements for direct potable reuse (DPR) water, known somewhat cryptically as project 4536.

Regarding this latest project, Salveson pointed out that the researchers are not utilizing your great-great-grandpa’s pasteurization process. He said that he was approached in 2005 by the inventor of a new process that uses waste heat for disinfection.

“Heating water is costly, stopping progress of this concept in many areas,” said Salveson, as an explanation for why pasteurization hasn’t already taken hold in water treatment. “This new work uses heat exchangers to essentially keep the heat in the loop within the reactor, with cold water in and cold water out, and heat in the middle. This makes pasteurization 95 percent more cost and energy efficient.”

“Getting Hot” summarizes tests of this method at four locations since 2006, the ultimate goal being approval under Title 22 of the California Department of Public Health’s “Regulations Related to Recycled Water.”

The first pasteurization tests were done in Santa Rosa, CA in 2006 and 2007. The work resulted in regulatory approval for pasteurization at a target temperature of 176.4°F for 7.7 seconds.

A full-scale (500,000 GPD) test was performed between 2012 and 2014 in Ventura, CA. Per a report on the project, that work demonstrated “robust performance” of the pasteurization system which led to Title 22 clearance for pasteurization at 162°F.

Towards the end of the Ventura testing in 2014, a full-scale pasteurization system came online in Graton, CA and its disinfection results were roughly the same as its predecessor. Regulatory permission of 162° at a contact time of 10 seconds was achieved.

Finally, in 2014 and 2015, the most complete analysis of pasteurization was begun in Melbourne, Australia as demonstration-scale testing. It has confirmed “robust disinfection of a range of bacteria, virus, and protozoa at different temperatures and contact times.” Using the same unit employed in Ventura, researchers successfully treated unfiltered secondary effluent for the first time. They are hopeful that the results will allow pasteurization to replace several combined disinfection methods in Melbourne’s state of Victoria.

When asked to highlight the most significant successes demonstrated by this research, Salveson notes three: the fact that pasteurization has resulted in the most robust treatment of pathogens for any disinfectant, that there has been long-term effective heat transfer to save energy and costs, and that there has been minimal biological and mineral fouling.

With 18 months of research left, Salveson declined to speculate on the future popularity of pasteurization for water reuse, but there is reason for optimism based on project 4536.

“4536 is looking at how pasteurization can be used as pretreatment ahead of membranes, possibly reducing biofouling in the subsequent membrane processes,” Salveson said. “4563 is also looking at overall water quality, and adding the robust disinfection of pathogens by pasteurization gives greater confidence in water quality and public health protection.”

Long since that fateful summer, Pasteur’s legacy seems to be offering us a toast from the countryside and, maybe soon, the chance to drink up.

Image credit: “Louis Pasteur,” © Sanofi Pasteur 2006, used under an Attribution 2.0 Generic license:

Source: Is Pasteurization The Key To Water Reuse

Craft Beer Brewers Have a New Tool to Slash Energy and Water Costs

Craft Beer Brewers Have a New Tool to Slash Energy and Water Costs

Published on April 4th, 2014 by 

Every business, large or small, needs to keep a careful eye on energy and water costs, but for industries that use a lot of both, such as breweries, keeping those costs down can make a huge difference in the bottom line. And for a small craft beer brewer, working on tighter margins and a smaller scale, using both water and energy in the most efficient manner is key.One option that could help brewers keep energy and water costs in line in the production of craft beer is by integrating a combined heat and power (CHP) and wastewater treatment system, such as the latest model from PTG Water & Energy (PTG).

The company’s onsite power generation units use natural gas (or biogas) to power a turbine to produce electricity (avoiding grid blackouts), to provide free hot water from the exhaust heat, and to treat and recycle wastewater, potentially reducing the costs of electricity, heating, and cooling by over 50%.

The B-100 system is modular and scalable, so brewers can expand as they grow, and can be configured for both existing or new breweries.

Twisted Manzanita, a craft beer maker in Santee, CA, has chosen the PTG system for its production facility, and the company estimates that it will help to cut its electricity bill by more than 50%, its natural gas costs by more than 70%, and will pay for itself within 3-4 years.

“We’re obsessed with quality and attention to every detail. By controlling operating costs and isolating ourselves from electricity, power and water price increases, we’re in a much better position to deliver an excellent product and invest in our growth. PTG’s onsite power generation technology will be a critical part of our roadmap for expansion.” – Jeff Trevaskis, CEO of Twisted Manzanita

Find out more about PTG’s system for renewable energy and industrial wastewater treatment for craft beer breweries at their website.

About the Author
 lives in southwestern New Mexico and digs bicycles, simple living, organic gardening, sustainable lifestyle design, slacklining, bouldering, and permaculture. He loves good food, with fresh roasted chiles at the top of his list of favorites. Catch up with Derek on TwitterRebelMouseGoogle+, or at his natural parenting site, Natural Papa!

Wastewater Disinfection And Energy Generation Make ‘Hot’ Couple

By Laura Martin


When the Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG) first presented their heat-based wastewater disinfection system to a group of environmental engineers, they didn’t get the response they expected.

“They literally asked us to leave,” recalled PTG CEO Greg Ryan. “Before we could explain how it works, they looked at us like we were crazy and said ‘disinfecting water with heat uses too much energy and isn’t cost effective.’”

But PTG’s system is more than cost-effective, said Ryan. It is cost-cutting.

“A plant can cut its disinfection costs by 50 percent using this system,” he explained. “And they can also cut their energy costs by 40 to 50 percent.”

This cost savings is achieved using a combination of renewable energy generation and wastewater disinfection technologies. Biogas — a natural byproduct of wastewater treatment — or natural gas is used to drive a turbine that generates renewable energy. This energy can be used to power multiple processes at a wastewater treatment plant and significantly offset the external electricity required. However, only 30 percent of the energy created by the turbine gets translated into electricity. The rest leaves as exhaust waste heat. With the PTG system, that hot exhaust air is passed through a waste heat recovery unit and used to increases the temperature of the wastewater to around 165 degrees or higher, the temperature needed to disinfect water.

The system solves two problems at once, explained Ryan.

“The energy guys are worried about energy costs, and the disinfection guys are worried about disinfection byproducts,” he said. “Long-term this is the solution to both.”

The Water Environmental Federation (WEF) agreed, awarding PTG with the Innovative Technology Award last October.

Heat has always been an effective way to disinfect water, but the high expense of traditional heating methods prevented it from being an accepted alternative to UV or chorine.

“We believe that heat is the best disinfection out there,” said Ryan. “UV and chlorine knock down live organisms to a certain level that is acceptable. “But heat is nondiscriminatory, it kills everything, even more than it needs to.  Our system is still going to be able to do an incredible job of disinfection.”

PTG’s technology has been certified by the State of California under Title 22 for the disinfection of wastewater for non-potable reuse and safe discharge. California’s Title 22 is recognized globally as one of the toughest standards for water recycling and reuse.

Although the idea behind the PTG system is new, the technology used is not.

The basics of the system include a turbine or engine, a heat exchanger, and a fan and pump to move the hot air.

“This isn’t scary new technology,” said Ryan. “We can take existing turbines and engines and design the system around that. We don’t have to build from scratch. It is about combining three or four different pieces in a new or different manner.”

The software incorporated into the system is a bit more high-tech. It allows the operators to remotely monitor the process from a tablet or smart phone, giving them the ability to make adjustments from miles away.

“If there is an issue, you don’t have to run out there — you can pop open an app on an iPad and see how many gallons of water have been disinfected and make sure everything is running properly,” said Ryan. “There is very little maintenance required.”

The PTG system has been on the market for approximately six months. The technology was utilized as part of a three-year test project at a municipal wastewater treatment plant in Ventura, CA, that disinfected 500,000 GPD gallons a day.  It is scalable to nearly any size, said Ryan. The company has plans to complete a 50 million GPD gallon per day test project in Australia in the near future.

While the system can be used for any type of wastewater treatment, it is particularly beneficial for industrial customers that need to use a lot of water but are very concerned about electricity cost. PTG has identified the brewery, food, beverage, and agricultural industries as most in need of this technology. They plan to announce a partnership with a major brewery in the coming months.

Most of PTG’s customers are motivated by the financial benefits of the system, said Ryan.  While these benefits are certainty important, Ryan hopes that more people will focus on the environmental impacts the technology can offer.

“Right now dollars and cents are the driver for this,” he explained. “But in the long term, we hope our customers are focused on doing a much better job environmentally by using something like this and not adding all these chemicals to the water and using all this energy.”

For more new technologies visit our Wastewater Disinfection Solution Center

Source: Wastewater Disinfection And Energy Generation Make ‘Hot’ Couple


Energy Efficiency, Cost Savings Drive Interest in Waste Heat Recovery

By Jeff Gunderson

A recent report by Global Industry Analysts (GIA) projected the global market for heat exchangers to reach $20.8 billion by the year 2018, primarily driven by rising energy costs, tightening environmental regulations and a growing global focus on energy efficiency. The report, “Heat Exchangers: A Global Strategic Business Report,” found that the market for heat exchangers is poised for significant growth in the coming years with increasing investments in plant infrastructure and improvements in energy efficiencies emerging as a key differentiating factor for manufacturers to compete in the marketplace.

A process diagram of Pasteurization Technology Group's patented process, which has 38 times more volume capacity over a single pass waste heat recovery unit. Photo courtesy of Pasteurization Technology Group

A process diagram of Pasteurization Technology Group’s patented process, which has 38 times more volume capacity over a single pass waste heat recovery unit. Photo courtesy of Pasteurization Technology Group

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, an estimated 20 to 50 percent of industrial energy input is lost as waste heat in the form of hot exhaust gases, cooling water, and heat lost from hot equipment surfaces and heated products. Captured waste heat — which can be recycled within the same process or transferred to another process within the plant — offers an attractive opportunity for an emission-free and less-costly energy resource.Heat exchangers are one of many available age-old technologies that can recover waste heat generated from industrial processes and operations — energy that in turn can be utilized for a variety of end uses. Because of the potential for significant energy savings, more industrial manufacturers are recognizing the benefits of capturing and reusing waste heat that would otherwise go unused.

As a sustainable practice, waste heat recovery can result in reduced energy consumption, and, in some instances, can help contribute to LEED certification. For example, among the numerous sustainable innovations of UC Davis’ LEED Platinum Brewery, Winery and Food Science Facility is a water loop compressor cooler which is connected to water-source heat pumps, enabling the transfer of waste heat for space heating.

For industrial water-based systems, a growing number of technologies are being developed and used for recovering waste heat that can be transferred to process water streams for water or process preheating, boiler feedwater system preheating, building conditioning, or in wastewater treatment. In addition to heat exchangers, other options include recuperators, regenerators, economizers, heat pumps, and run-around coils, along with several more.

Among heat exchanger technologies, plate and frame, shell and tube, and falling film heat exchangers specifically enable for the capture and transfer of heat to liquids, including liquid to liquid heat exchanges. Another heat exchange option — air-cooled heat exchangers — is beginning to represent a viable solution as compared to longstanding industrial heat removal methods. Indeed, with water becoming a scarce and expensive resource, the GIA report forecasted robust future growth for air-cooled heat exchangers, which are emerging into a cost-effective alternative to cooling towers.

Waste heat recovery and transfer innovations are increasingly reusing captured heat more efficiently, said Brent Giles, a senior analyst at Boston, Mass.-based Lux Research. “Because of the potential for greater water process efficiencies, more industrial manufacturers are taking a comprehensive view of their process operations and implementing efficient heat exchangers and other waste heat recovery strategies wherever feasible,” he said.

Anand M.G., a senior research analyst for Frost & Sullivan’s Industrial Automation and Process Control group, said energy efficiency is a keen focus of the industrial sector, especially in regards to water and wastewater. “As water is the major working medium in various industrial processes, recovering energy from used water to heat newly-supplied water is a key process improvement strategy in energy management,” he said. “And, as technology evolves, an increasing number of process and manufacturing plants are adopting a variety of energy optimization platforms, using waste heat or other parameters.”

“What we are seeing is the ‘greening’ of the industrial sector,” said Rich Fitterer, a principal at global engineering company GHD. “Heat recovery systems are proven performers in terms of energy conservation but now these types of technologies are becoming even more attractive because of the potential to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.”

But while waste heat recovery systems are seen as increasingly beneficial, industrial manufacturers still have high expectations in terms of returns. “The payback criteria for these types of investments can be very short, sometimes as little as two years or less,” Fitterer said. “However, that is now changing as GHG reduction becomes important for meeting company sustainability goals.”


Across a number of industrial areas, companies are implementing regenerative heat exchange applications and strategies that recover waste heat from a variety of sources for transfer to outside processes for water heating or for creating chilled water through absorption refrigeration cycles. Industries implementing waste heat recovery applications include energy, pulp and paper, automotive, chemicals, metals, food and beverage, as well as numerous other manufacturing sectors including glass, cement, paint, pharmaceutical, and bioethanol.

“In combined heat and power plants, heat recovery technologies with absorption chiller systems can utilize waste heat from process stack gases for creating chilled water for process cooling,” Fitterer said. “We are also seeing two- and three-stage economizers incorporated much more with boiler stacks, using hydronic loops through heat exchangers to transfer recovered heat. Even boilers with single economizers still have 300- to 400-degree exhaust temperatures. Heat recovery units can extract a considerable amount of heat from these sources for generating hot water.”

Rather than using steam to heat water for process or cleaning operations, facilities can utilize heat recovery systems to get water to the desired end temperature or close to it, according to Fitterer. “This makes the whole boiler system more efficient,” he said. “The key is to match up the recovered heat with the appropriate load or heat sink.”

Heat exchange technology is also being used to extract heat from industrial wastewater. In Canada, Ontario-based RenewABILITY Energy Inc., develops and manufactures falling-film heat exchanger systems that reclaim and recycle a substantial portion of the heat energy that is typically lost in waste fluid in many industrial processes and operations.

This drain water heat recovery system from Canada-based RenewABILITY Energy Inc., was installed at the Unilever Ragu facility in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. The system consists of a unique heat exchanger, which is specially designed to heat fresh potable water with outgoing warm to hot drain water. Photo courtesy of RenewABILITY Energy Inc.

This drain water heat recovery system from Canada-based RenewABILITY Energy Inc., was installed at the Unilever Ragu facility in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. The system consists of a unique heat exchanger, which is specially designed to heat fresh potable water with outgoing warm to hot drain water. Photo courtesy of RenewABILITY Energy Inc.

“The technology really shines in situations where there is a dirty waste stream or wastewater with a high concentration of solids or fibers that would foul other types of heat exchangers,” said Gerald Van Decker, RenewABILITY Energy president and CEO.
Called Power-Pipe, the technology can be installed in virtually any industrial application where there is warm to hot wastewater and can recover up to 70 percent of wastewater heat for use in preheating incoming colder water.

The double-wall, vented heat exchangers, which consist of multiple coils of copper tube wrapped together around a central copper drainpipe, have been used in numerous industrial operations, from food processing to textiles, according to Van Decker.

“For example, scalding tanks in poultry operations have a tremendous amount of hot wastewater that we can recover heat from,” he said. “Furthermore, a double benefit can sometimes be realized where it is necessary to cool food product or provide quenching of wastewater. In these situations, the Power-Pipe systems can cool these streams while extracting valuable heat and reducing primary energy consumption.”

Another technology available on the market employs a specialized use of waste heat recovery, utilizing captured heat to disinfect wastewater. Developed by San Leandro, Calif.-based Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG), the technology is the first and only to combine sustainable wastewater disinfection with renewable energy generation.

PTG’s integrated systems use digester or natural gas as fuel for driving a turbine to generate electricity. Hot exhaust air from the turbine, in turn, is passed through a waste heat recovery unit for increasing wastewater temperatures to a level that disinfects the wastewater stream.

Pasteurization Technology Group's demonstration plant in Ventura, Calif., is capable of disinfecting 500,000 gallons of wastewater per day. The technology uses waste heat recovery to disinfect wastewater. Photo courtesy of Pasteurization Technology Group

Pasteurization Technology Group’s demonstration plant in Ventura, Calif., is capable of disinfecting 500,000 gallons of wastewater per day. The technology uses waste heat recovery to disinfect wastewater. Photo courtesy of Pasteurization Technology Group

The PTG system is particularly effective in industrial operations that require a substantial amount of water and energy, including brewing and food processing, Ryan said.
“The technology is very aggressive in the use of waste heat,” said Greg Ryan, CEO and co-founder of PTG. “First, shell and tube heat recovery is used for capturing and transferring exhaust heat to wastewater for disinfection. Then, that same energy is used again when the wastewater is subsequently passed through a plate and frame heat exchanger. The heat from the disinfected wastewater is transferred to the incoming stream, effectively lowering the temperature of the disinfected wastewater to a level that is acceptable for discharge or reuse in outside applications.”

About the Author: Jeff Gunderson is a correspondent for Industrial WaterWorld. He is a professional writer with over 10 years of experience, specializing in areas connected to water, environment and building — including wastewater, stormwater, infrastructure, natural resources, and sustainable design. Jeff holds a master’s degree in Environmental Science and Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and a bachelor’s degree in General Science from the University of Oregon.

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Pasteurization Technology Group Raises $5M for Wastewater Disinfection | Greentech Media

Energy recovery and disinfection come together in one system, but can it scale beyond California?

Pasteurization Technology Group Raises $5M for Wastewater Disinfection

Pasteurization Technology Group Raises $5M for Wastewater Disinfection

Water utilities and industrial companies are increasingly looking for efficiencies in wastewater cycles. One company that is focused on that mission, Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG), just raised $5 million in series A financing.  The new round of money will be used to expand sales, especially in the industrial sector.

PTG’s first clients, however, have been in the municipal space. The San Leandro, Calif.-based company solves two of the pain points in wastewater treatment, according to Greg Ryan, CEO of PTG, no matter what type of facility.

As the organic material in the wastewater breaks down, it gives off biogas such as methane, which is usually flared. At the very end of the treatment process, the water needs to be disinfected before it can be discharged. PTG addresses these two disparate problems in one system, and the technology “can save huge sums of money,” said Ryan.

In Ventura, Calif., where PTG’s system is in late-stage pilot, the municipality is saving nearly $1 million annually. The biogas is used to drive a turbine in Ventura that provides electricity for about 20 percent of the plant’s power needs. The amount of biogas varies, so for some other plants, the gas could meet all of the power needs or only a fraction. In California, PTG’s technology has already been certified under Title 22.

Many other companies, primarily those working with fuel cell technologies, are also looking at harvesting the biogas to cut energy requirements, “but they don’t even touch the water component,” said Ryan, who argued that his company is unique in addressing multiple problems.

Down at the other end of the treatment plant, most plants have historically used chlorine dioxide, chloramines or UV light. UV light is the best, but can be difficult to treat the water that sits at the bottom of a tank. Some researchers have concerns about chlorinated byproducts in the environment and their effects on reproductive health.

PTG takes a relatively old-fashioned approach: heat. The idea of using heat to disinfect has been around for a long time, but the cost of heating wastewater in large amounts has typically been seen as too expensive.

To overcome the challenge, PTG takes the waste heat coming off of its biogas turbine to heat the wastewater to a temperature that disinfects the water stream. The energy in the hot water is also then reused to bring up the temperature of the water into the incoming stream.

PTG system

The closed-loop system could be a particularly good fit for the food and beverage industry, such as fruit producers or breweries. (PTG is already piloting with a brewery and a potato chip manufacturer.)  Ryan said that the industrial market would be the first focus, but added that “it is crystal-clear to us that the municipal wastewater market exists on a gargantuan scale.”

PTG has about a dozen proposals in the pipeline currently and expects about eight or nine projects by the end of the year. There are also many other pain points in the wastewater business, such as sludge, but PTG said that it wants to stay focused on its current approach before taking on other challenges. It is already looking for international partners

That doesn’t mean there isn’t space for partners, big — like Siemens or GE — or small, like the many other startups tackling other wastewater challenges. Ostara, for instance, is taking phosphorus out of sludge to resell as high-grade fertilizer, while Oberon FMR harvests bacteria from wastewater streams at food-processing plants to turn into feed for fish farms. There are endless startups with ideas on how to turn the concept of wastewater into a water recycling stream or to extract enough energy from the process to run an entire plant.

Kennington joined the Series A, which was led by EIC Ventures. EIC has previously invested $1 million in PTG.

Source: Pasteurization Technology Group Raises $5M for Wastewater Disinfection | Greentech Media

The World’s Best Sustainability Ideas

The World’s Best Sustainability Ideas

Katerva, a four-year-old nonprofit set up to recognize and support stand-out sustainability efforts around the world, has just announced its second annual awards in a competition it bills as the Nobel Prize in the broad and somewhat amorphous field of sustainability. Among the eclectic choices: a computer game that solves scientific problems, a nonprofit co-founded by actor Matt Damon that leverages donor funds to provide microloans to clean water projects and a venture by Japanese technology giant Mitsubishi that makes ships move more efficiently through the ocean, cutting down on CO2 emissions.

Based in London, Katerva is the brainchild of Terry Waghorn, an author and former consultant at KPMG who founded Katerva in January 2009. (The word Katerva comes from the Latin word Caterva, which means “crowd.”) So far the project is an entirely volunteer endeavor, with an army of panelists and staffers and funding from “Terry Waghorn’s bank account,” he says, adding that he is actively fundraising. Chief Research Officer Victoria Kamsler, a former lecturer at Princeton on environmental ethics and a clean-tech entrepreneur, runs the awards and evaluation process as a volunteer. “I can hardly believe the extraordinary generosity of all of our experts,” she says.

Today Katerva announced winners in each of ten categories and three overall winners. The top award went to Bioneedle Technologies Group, which also won the award in the Materials & Resources category. The company, based in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, produces the Bioneedle, invented by a Dutch veterinarian. Still in the development phase, it is a tiny, biodegradable mini-implant filled with a thermo-stabilized vaccine that is placed under the skin in a quick, painless process. The material surrounding the vaccine absorbs body fluids and dissolves within minutes. It does away with contaminated syringes, metal vials and the need to control vaccines’ temperature, and has the potential to boost vaccinations by 25 million children a year.

Katerva also announced two “People’s Choice” awards that were voted on by more than 3,600 people who reviewed 51 finalists on Katerva’s website. The top People’s Choice award went to Safe World For Women, a five-year-old UK-based NGO that works with grassroots groups around the world to promote women’s empowerment. Its website includes dozens of stories and interviews about international women’s rights and issues, including recent pieces about abortions in Indonesia and the challenges faced by women candidates running for office in Kenya.

An honorable mention People’s Choice award went to ¡Echale! a Tu Casa, (put your heart into your home), a home building and improvement program run by a 25-year-old Mexican NGO. Echale homes are made of adobe bricks called Adoblock, which use local soil. The homes have other environmentally-friendly technologies like rainwater collection systems and solar heating.

In Pictures: The World’s Best Sustainability Ideas

To come up with the award winners, Katerva started with an international network of 500 “spotters” who nominated more than 150 sustainability programs and ideas. Spotters range from famous names like Nicholas Negroponte, founder and chairman of One Laptop per Child, to corporate insiders like Peter White, Global Sustainability Director at Procter & Gamble.

The nominees went through six different filtering phases that included reviews by more than 300 scientists, social scientists and consultants who evaluated each projects’ feasibility, marketability, originality and impact. The multiple reviews took more than a year and yielded five finalists (and one tie) in each of ten categories: Food Security, Behavioral Change, Economy, Ecosystem Conservation, Gender Equality, Materials & Resources, Human Development, Energy & Power, Transportation, and Urban Design.

The next step was to further winnow down those 51 finalists to an award-winner in each category. To do that, Waghorn tapped “expert panels” of up to 10 people. For instance, in the Materials & Resources category, which focuses on waste reduction, Katerva relied on, among others, David Fork, a renewable energy technologist at Google and Ron Nielsen, a former sustainability officer at mining company Alcan (now Alcan Rio Tinto), who runs a sustainability consulting firm. The winner in that category: Pasteurization Technology Group, a San Leandro, Calif. startup that treats wastewater using an energy-efficient process that recycles the methane produced by wastewater treatment. The methane fuel powers a turbine that, in turn, produces electricity for the treatment facility.

The range of winners is striking. Five are commercial ventures, including the overall winner, Bioneedle, and a Kenya-based social enterprise, Backpack Farm Agriculture Program, which sells tools and products like seeds and drip irrigation equipment to small commercial farmers in East Africa. Two are university programs, like AguaClara, a research program at Cornell University that produces municipal water treatment technology which relies on gravity rather than electricity. The program serves 30,000 people in rural Honduras. Only three are non-profits, like Reef Check, a Los Angeles-based network of 30,000 volunteers in more than 90 countries who monitor coral reefs.

To select Bioneedle as the top winner, the ten category winners were reviewed by a panel of high-profile judges including Mary Robinson, former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Fatih Birol, Chief Economist at the International Energy Agency and Stuart Mackintosh, Executive Director of the Group of Thirty. The panel judged the finalists according to their impact on 20 criteria, from poverty alleviation to environmental benefit.

Katerva will hold an awards ceremony at the House of Lords in London in late May. Bioneedle will receive some $500,000 worth of services like information technology help from Ernst & Young and strategy consulting from Deloitte. Waghorn hopes that eventually the prize will include “a sizable amount of cash” to accompany the donated services.

Source: The World’s Best Sustainability Ideas

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With our main office located in the San Francisco Bay Area, California-based PTG Water & Energy® is a rapidly growing, venture capital-backed company that is taking on the reality of increasing demands on water management/treatment and energy management by creating a platform that is able to fully integrate water and energy resource management tasks across a variety of facilities. Our people are helping commercial customers and working with business partners to fulfill our mission to seamlessly integrate effective water management with efficient on-site energy generation.

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