San Gabriel Valley Water Company (SGVWC) is a California-based public water utility headquartered in El Monte, CA that provides safe, clean and reliable drinking water to multiple communities throughout the Los Angeles region. The Sandhill WTP (overhead picture right) is one of SGVWC’s drinking water plants, which takes raw imported water, treats it, and distributes it to households in the Rialto, CA area.
Sandhill WTP’s water supply is gravity-fed from higher elevations, creating 115 to 150 pounds per square inch (psi) of pressure upstream of the treatment plant. This pressure has to be regulated and reduced prior to the plant to avoid damaging the piping and water treatment system. The embedded energy in this water is lost entirely to noise and heat as the pressure reducing valves (PRVs) burn through the pressure. Simultaneously, Sandhill WTP’s largest operating cost besides personnel is the electricity to operate the treatment and distribution technologies at the plant.