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How to Relieve a Fracking Headache -- Removing Oil from Water

Tue, 02/21/2012 - 9:50am

AbanakiAbanaki Corp. was recently enlisted by a northeastern wastewater treatment plant in search of a solution to remove oil from water. Specifically, the task at hand was to remove the oil from fracking wastewater before disposal of large volumes into the local city sewer system for further treatment.

Fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, is a procedure widely used by natural gas drillers in which water, sand and chemicals are forced at high pressure into the ground to break up shale rock formations, thereby causing the discharge of trapped natural gas.

Oil skimming is an environmentally responsible way for wastewater treatment plant operators and their natural gas driller customers to remove trace amounts of oil from fracking wastewater prior to its disposal. Oil skimming uses the differences in specific gravity and surface tension between oil and water.

The oil skimmer's belt attracts oil and other hydrocarbon liquids from the fluid's surface, where the contaminants are then scraped off the sides of the belt and discharged into a collection container.

In this application, the fracking wastewater is loaded into tanker trucks and routed to large tanks where the wastewater is treated prior to disposal. Due to its size and high removal capacity (up to 40 gallons of oil per hour), Abanaki's Oil Grabber® Model 8 belt oil skimmer was the suitable choice for this application.

It can be used in tanks with depths as shallow as one foot or as deep as 100 feet. Moreover, the Oil Grabber is an effective method of removing oil and other hydrocarbons from the fracking fluid before filtration and the final stage of disposal into the sewer system.

Oil skimming is the most economical, lowest maintenance method for removing floating oil, grease, fuel and other hydrocarbons from water. Companies use Abanaki oil skimmers in a wide range of applications, ranging from industrial wastewater, groundwater remediation and machine shop coolant.

In these roles, skimmers help companies meet municipal and EPA water quality standards, and extend the life of coolant used in machine tool operations. Oil skimming is also used as a pre-treatment for filtration, to prevent oil from blinding filter media.

For more information, please email the company via skimmers@abanaki.com or visit www.abanaki.com.

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