Introduction

The meaning of the word depurate is "to purify or cleanse"; therefore, a depurator is one which purifies or cleanses. Depurator is the name given purifies or cleanses. Depurator is the name given to the four cell flotation system, WEMCO TM Depurator System, which is manufactured by WEMCO Division of Envirotech Corporation.

The Depurator System is a natural aspirating, shear force flotation cell that has been designed for use in hazardous locations in the petroleum industry. The primary function of the Depurator System is to reduce the oil content in oily waters. In most cases, with chemical aid, the oil content con be reduced to acceptable limits such as 20 ppm oil or less.

ORIGIN

The WEMCO Depurator System originated from the WEMCO Fogergren flotation cell which is used in the benefication of ore in the mining industry. The WEMCO Fogergren is a single cell flotation unit which has been used for years; as a matter of fact, more than 15,000 WEMCO Fagergren flotation cells are presently in use. Other than the principle of self air inducement, the similarity just about ends. The WEMCO Depurator System operates with four cells in series which are completely enclosed, and explosion-proof motors; whereas the WEMCO Fogergren is an open cell which does not require explosion-proof motors. Also, the tank design is different. The Fagergren is designed for solid-liquid separation and the Depurator is designed for liquid-liquid separation.

Questions have arisen regarding how the WEMCO Depurator System came about as for as the petroleum industry is concerned, and what the need is for this equipment. First, the market was developed by federal state and local agencies that began to enforce and regulate the discharge of water to open ditches, pits, ponds, lakes, rivers and oceans. In most areas the ponds, lakes, rivers and oceans. In most areas the maximum oil content allowed in effluent waters is 20 ppm. To meet this demand, a process was necessary ppm. To meet this demand, a process was necessary that would be both efficient and economical. Therefore, the market is there for any process meeting these requirements; the WEMCO Depurator System does.

The next question was, how did the use of the WEMCO Depurator System come about for this purpose? It just so happens that during an equipment exposition in 1968, a representative for the Tretolite Division of Petrolite Corporation saw a Fagergren bench model on Petrolite Corporation saw a Fagergren bench model on display. After finding out that the Fagergren was used in benefication of ore, questions and interest developed into a program to determine if the Fagergren could be useful in effluent water clarification.

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