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Industrial Water Delivered Quick

Saving millions of dollars with quick deploy water supply and expansion solutions 

In October 2008, Curacao Refining Utility Company (CRU), formerly Curacao Utility Operating Company (CUOC), was experiencing difficulties meeting the water demand of their client, Isla Refinery. It was challenged to keep up with production of the large quantity of water required to operate the refinery, due to unscheduled maintenance and down-time of their existing thermal distillation and seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) units. Insufficient water supply had caused unplanned shutdowns which resulted in millions of dollars a day in lost revenue.

CRU requested that Seven Seas Water provide an emergency supply of industrial-quality water of 1,454,200 gallons per day (GPD) (5,510 m3/d) in the shortest time-frame possible. The supply would supplement shortfalls and provide a buffer so it could execute a required maintenance program to return their existing units to the designed capacity.

Seven Seas Water responded to the client’s requirements with a two phased solution. Phase 1, delivered within two weeks, consisted of an immediate supply of quick deploy containerized reverse osmosis (RO) units with a capacity of 451,782 GPD (1,710 m3/d). The units were operational in under 4 months from contract signing. Phase 2, a land based RO system to deliver 1,003,854 GPD (3,800 m3/d), was installed within 9 months of contract signing. Designed as a two-pass system, the facility produces an industrial use product water quality of less than 25 uS/cm, a significantly higher quality than that used for potable purposes.

The refinery’s existing feed water supply is from a slow-moving marsh in a busy harbor with significant biological content, oil and grease. A difficult raw feed water to treat, CRU and Seven Seas Water agreed in the initial contract in 2008 that if a certain SDI level was not achieved, additional pretreatment equipment would be installed, which would become Phase 3 of the project. Seven Seas Water resolved the  pretreatment challenges by installing additional multi-media filters (MMF’s) on Phase 1. Four first stage MMF’s were installed, and the existing container mounted MMF’s became the second stage of Phase 1. Seven MMF’s were installed on Phase 2 and the existing eight MMF’s became second stage of Phase 2. The entire installation of additional pretreatment was completed in under 8 months.

In September 2012, the aging CRU thermal equipment continued to fail and was unable to provide the refinery with the quantity of water required. Seven Seas Water was asked to install an additional 451,782 GPD (1,710 m3/d) on a fast track basis to help meet demands. Another addendum to the contract was signed, and Seven Seas Water responded by delivering two 250,000 GPD (946 m3/d) quick deploy RO units. In this 4th Phase of the water supply project, Seven Seas Water partnered with CRU to oversee the civil engineering of the project, and the new units were commissioned within 2 months.

One year later, CRU requested another 451,782 GPD (1,710 m3/d) upon realizing the existing thermal units were past their useful life and they would no longer be able to meet their obligation to produce water for the refinery. Now into Phase 5 of the expansion, Seven Seas Water stepped up to replace the failing capacity by delivering 2 more 250,000 GPD (946 m3/d) quick deploy RO units, and commissioned the plants in under 4 months.

With most of the existing capacity of the thermal units now replaced by Seven Seas Water, Curacao Refining Utility identified that the existing SWRO system they had previously purchased on site was not operating at the efficiency the Seven Seas Water assets were, and they were experiencing difficulty commissioning a second purchased SWRO system. In March 2014, another addendum was signed for Seven Seas Water to enter in to Phase 6 of the project, which would consist of commissioning, upgrading and overseeing the operation of CRU’s existing SWRO systems, resulting in an expansion of the overall water supply of 2,536,000 GPD (9,600 m3/d). Seven Seas Water delivered on the contract and successfully upgraded and commissioned the CRU purchased equipment. In April Seven Seas Water assumed operations of the existing SWRO, and management of the construction of the second SWRO began in May. In January 2015, construction was complete and both units were fully operational.

Today, Seven Seas Water is delivering  2,359,200 MGD (8,930 m3/d) under a build, own, operate arrangement, and is also responsible contractually for operating CRU’s existing SWRO systems and delivering 2,536,000 GPD (9,600 m3/d), for a total combined capacity of ~4,900,000 GPD (18,546 m3/d). 


The material contained in this case study is provided for informational purposes only. The information contained is accurate only as of the date the case study was issued. Seven Seas Water disavows any obligation to update information contained in this case study after the date of issuance.