Maintaining exceptional water quality in Chesterfield County
Situated in Chesterfield County, the Swift Creek Reservoir is a precious resource for the community, serving as a source of drinking water and recreational activities. Despite its beauty, the reservoir is not immune to the impact of algae blooms, which can decrease water quality and increase water treatment costs.
Recognizing the importance of ensuring safety and water quality, Chesterfield County has taken a proactive approach to tackling the issue of algae. In an effort to stay ahead of the curve, the county has invested in cutting-edge technologies, including the deployment of LG Sonic MPC-Buoy.
water quality during summer months
water quality data collected by MPC-Buoy
water quality monitoring with Vertical Profiler
Advancing water quality through innovation
Despite their natural occurrence, the high presence of algae can impact water quality and produce unpleasant smells and tastes. Some types of algae, such as blue-green algae (Cyanobacteria), may even produce toxins harmful to humans and aquatic life.
In 2017, a minor algal bloom, primarily comprising Microcystis and Anabaena, occurred in the 1,700-acre reservoir, emphasizing the need for vigilance in monitoring and managing algal growth. To tackle this challenge, Chesterfield County has placed a strong emphasis on innovative technologies, including the LG Sonic MPC-Buoy system.
This system uses low-power ultrasound to create a constant pressure cycle around the algal cells, interrupting their buoyancy regulation and disrupting their ability to access sunlight and nutrients. The MPC-Buoy has no negative impact on aquatic life and is a cost-effective solution to maintaining water quality.
Since the installation of LG Sonic technology, the water quality in Swift Creek Reservoir has been consistently excellent, even during the hot summer months, when algae blooms are most common in the United States. Real-time water quality data collected by the buoys showed positive results from July 1st to September 30th of last year, with measurements consistently rated as “Excellent to Good.”
Above and below the surface
To further enhance its water quality monitoring capabilities, Chesterfield County recently upgraded to the LG Sonic Vertical Profiler. This system provides high-resolution measurements of water quality parameters at multiple depths, giving an in-depth view of Swift Creek Reservoir. With this advanced monitoring system, Chesterfield County is even better equipped to monitor, predict, and control water quality in the reservoir.
Plant Manager David Sirois emphasizes the importance of a holistic approach to monitoring algae blooms, recognizing that it exists not only on the water’s surface but throughout the entire water column. With cutting-edge technology and a commitment to improving water quality, Chesterfield County is setting a high standard for water management and ensuring that its residents have access to safe and high-quality water.
“The unit that we got this year is special in the fact that it can go up and down the water column. It can go down all the way down to the bottom of the reservoir. So, being able to go throughout the water column gives us a better picture of what’s going on with blue-green algae.”