Bio/Pharma Scale-Up Laboratory Wastewater Treatment

Project Highlights

  • Treatability Testing
  • Industrial Wastewater Treatment System Design
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Structural Engineering

Biotechnological and Pharmaceutical Scale-Up Laboratory Improvements

A top, multi-national biotechnological and pharmaceutical company commissioned a new Scale-Up Laboratory (SUL) within their Cambridge facility. Under this client’s industrial discharge permit, wastewater discharges from the SUL were permitted by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA). The SUL operation demonstrated elevated levels of phenol were later detected at their MWRA discharge location, and odors were observed from their existing pH neutralization wastewater system.

Tighe & Bond was retained to evaluate the odors and elevated phenol levels by conducting a series of bench-scale treatability studies to identify the root cause(s). Our research determined that biological growth within the existing treatment system was being promoted by the SUL waste, which in turn was causing these issues. Tighe & Bond prepared wastewater design plans to upgrade the existing wastewater treatment system at the end of the pipe to include an automated chlorine bleach dosing system to reduce the level of biological growth and oxidize phenol. Tighe & Bond conducted additional sampling and treatability investigations to identify specific waste streams contributing to the biological activity generating the odors and phenol.

It was determined that segregating specific waste streams and metering them into the wastewater treatment system before discharge would significantly reduce odors and phenol levels.

The process wastewater separation project involved:

  • The design of dedicated floor drains
  • Trap primers in the process area
  • A new industrial waste piping system
  • Dedicated industrial wastewater lift stations
  • A dual tank industrial wastewater holding system
  • Process and controls
  • Various safety features such as Redundancy
  • Containment piping
  • Eyewash/Showers
  • Leak detection and containment

Tighe & Bond also provided structural, electrical, and mechanical engineering services to support this project.

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