United Utilities awards biggest UK Nereda contract

Kendal WwTW, where United Utilities has invested in an installation of Royal HaskoningDHV’s Nereda® technology.

United Utilities has agreed a contract for its first full scale application of the Nereda® activated sludge technology at Kendal WwTW. The plant is designed to treat a population equivalent of 93,000 and will be the largest of its kind in the UK.

“We were the first in the UK to invest in a pilot plant for Nereda at our Davyhulme treatment works – the very site where activated sludge was developed 100 years ago,” said Kieran Brocklebank, United Utilities Head of Innovation. “We’ve been hard at work testing Nereda since then in a number of applications. Moving away from a conventional process over 100 years old is difficult so we took our time to test Nereda across a broad range of criteria including purchase, running costs, and specific technical parameters”.

Nereda® is said to offer a number of advantages over conventional activated sludge due to the nature of the granules. Contrary to conventional processes, bacteria are concentrated into a compact granular structure with excellent settling characteristics. The compact structure also leads to the formation of different zones which provides the optimum conditions for simultaneous nitrification and denitrification as well biological phosphorous removal.

Due to these factors the Nereda® process can operate at high biomass concentrations leading to compact reactor footprints which was also a key reason behind the decision to use the technology at Kendal WwTW. “It’s an exciting time for United Utilities to have signed such a significant contract” said Simon Chadwick, United Utilities Wastewater Services Director. “The application of the Nereda® technology is part of our drive to reduce operational costs across our Wastewater Operations”.

United Utilities has signed the delivery contract with LiMA, working closely with them and the Nereda® technology provider. Rene Noppeney, Global Director for Water Products and Innovation for Royal HaskoningDHV said: “Kendal treatment works is a great opportunity to demonstrate how Nereda® technology can deliver high quality effluent standards, low power requirements and sustainable costs.”