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Glencorse Technology and Innovation

Video Transcript

Scottish Water’s Flagship construction project, the Glencorse Water Treatment Works has been exclusively serving nearly half a million customers across Edinburgh and parts of Midlothian since March 2012.

The 130-million-pounds investment incorporates cutting edge technology with leading environmental engineering practice.

The works is capable of delivering 175-million litres of water to Scotland’s capital city and surrounding areas, every day – that’s the equivalent of 50 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Combining Scottish Water’s largest ever consultation with the results of a detailed civil engineering study, whittled 6 locations down to one.

Raw water supplies are delivered through gravity from our reservoirs in the Borders to the works, driving the inlet main’s hydro turbine, which sustainably provides a third of Glencorse’s 200-kilo-Watt energy needs. The same natural force which delivers treated water from Glencorse directly to customers across the capital.

Construction delivery partners Black & Veatch have installed the pioneering Counter Current Dissolved Air Filtration and Flotation treatment process combines two highly efficient filtration processes into one unit.

"The main difference between a COCODAFF and a conventional DAFF system, is that the coagulated water flows counter current to the aeration bubbles. This gives an increased efficiency in the process, by increasing the probability of particle air bubble contact as the coagulated water flows through the curtain of air bubbles during the treatment process."

The raw water is passed through a variety of flotation and flocculation processes before receiving final treatment and being stored in one of the largest clear water storage tanks in Europe.

Even residue from this process is re-treated on site, ensuring as little of the raw water as possible is disposed of as waste, making Glencorse one of the most efficient water treatment works in the country.

All of this is housed under Scotland’s largest ‘grass’ roof. In a world first, the roof was specially blended from a mix of Pentlands’ wild flowers and grasses. It covers an area the size of four football pitches.

"The project for me, although it finishes at the farm gate when the product drives out the door, it didn’t, it captured the imaginations of everybody involved in the project. It was the nice, touchy feely side of a large construction project, so it did feel like a real collaborative effort. That’s something we don’t normally engage that much in the growing process with our customer."

Where possible, the project has used locally sourced materials to ensure a natural fit, reduce the transportation footprint and reduce maintenance. Working with the project’s education programme sixty oak trees have been planted to leave a living legacy for young people within the community.

The ‘grass’ roofs also play a part in harvesting rainwater, storing it in bio-diverse wetlands located around the perimeter. These provide a rich habitat for a diversity of plants, animals, birds and insects. – **If access is granted onto the roof**

In another world first the project team introduced a mobile pipeline production plant on the route of the new trunk main. This allowed extra long pipes to be rolled out of the production plant and straight into the ground, reducing a million lorry miles – the equivalent of driving to the moon and back twice. These extra long pipes also require fewer welds, making the pipeline more robust.

"The production unit itself can manufacture pipe from 16mm, up to 1600mm. Because of the set up of the equipment, the production rate was about two to three times faster than it would be in a standard factory produced situation. Polymer goes in at one end, it’s heated up, it’s injected under pressure, and at the other end you have a nice big round black pip, simple as that."

Sliding the new mains through existing infrastructure ensured that we kept the Edinburgh City bypass flowing, and that drivers were never disturbed by the pipeline extension.

The Glencorse Water Project has lifted several international awards, and hosted visiting dignitaries from both home and abroad.

"It’s a very modern plant, and this has been a huge investment, bringing a lot of jobs during the construction phase, but also increasing the reliability and the quality of the water supply, to nearly half a million people."

Glencorse Water Treatment Works will now replace the existing works at Fairmilehead and Alnwickhill, delivering a 21st century drinking water supply, to Scotland’s modern capital city.

Scottish Water’s flagship construction project, the Glencorse Water Treatment Works has been exclusively serving nearly half a million customers across Edinburgh and parts of Midlothian since March 2012. This video looks at how the £130 million investment incorporates cutting edge technology with leading environmental engineering practice.