Many types of industrial processes create waste oil, which can be time-consuming and expensive to collect, store, and dispose of. Worse yet, without constant effort to remove them, residual oils can build up and cause hazards, contamination, and machine downtime. In the metals industry, oil waste comes from machinery and components used to make steel and other metals, as well as from cleaning metal billets prior to rolling operations.
Problem: Bethlehem Steel Corp. (Lebanon, Pa.) and Republic Steel Corp. (Chicago plant) — both now part of Mittal Steel Co. — produced vast amounts of wastewater daily in their steel operations.
The companies needed a way to separate the oil from wastewater to meet disposal requirements and to maintain the efficiency of their wastewater collection and treatment systems. Additionally, the plants needed a solution that could be easily and quickly integrated into existing systems without interfering with processes such as billet washing.
Solution: Both companies installed Model 6V Brill™ oil-recovery systems to remove the oil from their wastewater. In a unique anti-clogging design, the Model 6V has a polyurethane tube that attracts and collects the waste oil as it floats on top of wastewater. The tube passes through a scraper system to remove the oil, which flows by gravity into a containment drum. The Model 6V operates independently and, if needed, can run 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Its internal components are made of high-strength steel and bronze for durability. External parts are made from abrasive-resistant ceramic. The machine has a lifespan of more than 30 years.
Jim Petrucci, Oil Skimmer’s vice president, said because the company uses factory-trained representatives, they can even specialize features, such as mounting racks, that make the Model 6V easy to fit into limited or awkward spaces. “You aren’t picking out something from a catalogue. We can adapt, modify, or even build from scratch.”
Benefits: The Model 6V can provide three significant financial benefits to companies by: reducing wastewater-treatment costs (i.e., chemicals, hauling charges, treatment-system maintenance, improved system efficiency); reducing regulatory testing requirements and impact fees for wastewater treatment and discharge; and generation of an additional revenue source through the sale of the high-quality removed oil to oil recyclers, who are currently paying an average of 50 cents per gallon.
By installing the two Model 6V skimmers, the two steel plants doubled the amount of oil they were removing from wastewater and even created a new revenue stream by reselling the oil to an oil recycling company.