Annual Water Quality Reports
Water Treatment Plant Summary
These particular views of the water treatment plant allows you to see the entire treatment process from beginning to end.
You are standing over the Aeration Basin, which is the first step of the treatment process. You can just see one corner of the aeration basin at the bottom of this picture.
As you begin moving your eyes up from the bottom of the picture you will notice that there are two, side by side, rectangular tanks, one on your left and one on your right. These are called the filter trains. The filter train on the left is referred to as Train number 1 and the filter train on the right is Train number 2. There is a is walkway between the two filter trains which allow us to have a close up look of each and every stage of the entire treatment process.
Please walk with me and let's take a close look at Train number 1.
First you might notice that there are 4 distinct compartments or divisions. The first compartment is divided into two halves. These are the compartments that look muddy in the picture. This is the flocculation basin.
This is where the oxidized water is gently stirred to create many little particles to form that resemble coffee grounds floating around in the water called floc. The reason that we want to create this muddy looking water with the little pieces of floc is so that we can get the iron to change from a liquid form to a solid form and in this way we can actually make the iron settle out of the water.
The first half of the flocculation basin is where the "rapid mixing" of the treated water is done. The second half of the flocculation basin is where the "slower mixing" takes place and allows the particles of floc to gain size so they will settle out of the water.
The next compartment or third division is where the floc settles out of the water. This step of the process is called the sedimentation or settling basin.
The last compartment or fourth division is the sand filter. This is the last step in the water treatment process. The water coming out of the filters is safe and ready to drink, however, since the water coming out of the filter is not disinfected, it is not considered to be "finished". The water becomes "finished" after it is disinfected, and is pumped into the 5 miles of distribution main feeding the entire UAF campus.
The type of disinfectant being used in the UAF drinking water system is a Mixed Oxidant (MIOX). Mixed Oxidants are safer than Chlorine and are more effective in inactivating bacteria than Chlorine.
The entire water treatment process, from the time the water enters the water treatment plant and comes out of the filter as drinking water, takes about 4 hours.