Justin deMello, P.E. of Woodard & Curran received the 2012 Gascoigne Wastewater Treatment Plant Operational Improvement Medal from the Water Environment Federation. The award was given for deMello’s article, Dewatering from the Living Room, which describes the design and implementation of a remotely-controlled, low-cost sludge-thickening process at Wheaton College's wastewater treatment facility in Norton, MA.
Wheaton’s facility needed upgrades to improve performance and reduce costs for the college. To achieve these goals, Woodard & Curran designed and implemented a sludge thickening system that uses simple components and can be operated remotely, improving reliability and reducing sludge hauling costs without a large capital expense. The $60,000 project paid for itself in seven months and has saved the college more than $300,000 in operating costs over the last three years. This quick fix allowed Wheaton to address a short term problem while it continues to improve its facility.
deMello is a civil and environmental engineer specializing in wastewater, water, and water resources work. He has helped municipalities, colleges and universities, and industrial clients with infrastructure funding applications, planning, design, and construction. He is also a certified wastewater treatment operator in Massachusetts.
The Water Environment Federation is an international not-for-profit technical and educational organization focused on water quality issues. deMello’s award was presented at the organization’s annual conference, WEFTEC 2012, the largest water quality event in North America and largest annual water quality exhibition in the world.
The Gascoigne Medal was established in recognition of George Bradley Gascoigne, a prominent consultant who exhibited a great deal of interest in the operation of wastewater treatment plants. The medal is awarded to the author(s) of an article which presents the solution of an important and complicated operational problem within a full-scale, operating wastewater treatment plant which is appropriately staffed.
Woodard & Curran is a 650-person, integrated engineering, science, and operations company serving clients locally and nationwide.