NIPSCO uses a large reservoir for settling out suspended solids prior to discharging the water back to the Kankakee River. This water is rich in nutrients, causing algae to grow at an undesired rate. Algae has a direct effect on pH and TSS levels in water. By using LG Sonic MPC-Buoy systems, NIPSCO has improved their water quality and their environmental impact.

In order to comply with NPDES effluent regulations, power facilities have to keep their discharge within strict pH and TSS ranges. The inability to comply with the discharge limitations in their permit could result in hefty fines and potentially result in the inability to operate the generating units. Not being able to discharge could also result in damage to the large cooling units, which are costly to repair.

NIPSCO is a company that is continually working to manage and improve their environmental impact. In their search to find a safe and effective solution for their algae problems, this led them to the LG Sonic MPC-Buoy. Together with LG Sonic, NIPSCO is taking steps to a cleaner energy future. LG Sonic ultrasound technology is chemical-free, proven to be safe for fish, plants and does not cause algae to release their toxins in the water. NIPSCO is one of six power plants where MPC-Buoys are being used to safely improve the water quality.

Improved water quality and safe discharge water

Since the installation of five MPC-Buoy systems in the spring of 2019, TSS levels remain at lower levels than 3ppm: “I don’t think I have seen TSS higher than 3ppm and it usually is below 2ppm. Water is very clear” said Brian Snyder, Senior Chemical and Environmental Specialist. NIPSCO calculated that using LG Sonic technology, just by reducing chemicals alone, the ROI of MPC-Buoys would be less than 2 years.

“We were using both an algaecide (quaternary amine) and a UV-blocker at all our cooling towers. By the end of the season we eliminated using the UV-blocker chemical and we reduced the algaecide by 25%. In 2020, we were able to further reduce use of algaecide to 33% of what we used before the installation [of MPC-Buoy]. We did have some days with high TSS, but we never exceeded our monthly average for compliance in the year 2020. You have a quality product [MPC-Buoy] that has potential to help many customers such as ourselves. We enjoy working with quality people,“ said Brian Snyder, Senior Chemical & Environmental Specialist, NIPSCO.

About LG Sonic
LG Sonic is a leading international manufacturer of interactive algae control solutions that combine online water quality monitoring and ultrasonic technology to effectively control harmful algal blooms in large water surfaces. Active in over 96 countries around the world, LG Sonic provides sustainable solutions to recover water bodies of top-level water utilities, power plants, recreational lakes, among others.