PFAS Water Treatment System

Project Profile

  • Project Location : Massachusetts
  • Client Industry : Contractor / Consultant
  • Owner Industry : Federal Government
  • Gwtt Scope : Design / Build
  • Contract Value : $3.2M
  • Project Duration : 12 Months
  • Contaminants : PFOA, PFOS
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Key Project Details

  • Treatment system was housed in a pre-engineered steel building
  • Equipment included: pre-filtration equipment, 40k lb GACs, PLC control equipment, VFDs, and piping, fittings, and valves
  • GWTT commissioned and started up the system
  • GWTT excavated and constructed the project backwash lagoon


  • Accelerated project schedule
  • Ongoing supply chain delays and disruption
  • Limited laydown area for piping assembly

Project Narrative

GWTT was engaged by a federal contracting firm to design and construct a water treatment system to address multiple municipal drinking water wells near a large military installation that was impacted by PFAS contamination. GWTT was responsible for completing all civil (excavation for underground utilities and foundation, as well as electrical conduits), electrical, and mechanical work, including erecting the pre-engineered steel building.

The pre-engineered steel building was erected over a customized structural concrete foundation. The 2,100-square-foot building housed four 40,000-pound Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) Absorbers. The new treatment plant was connected to the existing water distribution system using 8”, 10”, 12” and 16” ductile iron pipe, fittings and valves.

The treatment system processes water through four GACs and then through a UV disinfection system as the final step prior to discharge. The treatment system was designed and programmed to operate continuously utilizing a PLC and was outfitted with leak detection, pressure transmitters, pH analyzer, flow transmitter, and multiple level sensors.

The system is controlled by a custom master control panel with a PLC, cellular telemetry, and VFDs for the transfer pumps. The system backwash water from the GAC system is discharged into a lined retention pond that flows into an adjacent infiltration gallery. This allows for all backwash filtrate to settle out prior to water percolating back into the groundwater system.