Cooling Tower Water Treatment using Vortex Process Technology for Energy and Water Savings

Saving Energy and Water in Cooling Tower Water Treatment

Electric Power Research Institute, Inc.


Palo Alto, CA

Recipient Location


Senate District


Assembly District



Amount Spent



Project Status

Project Result

As of December 23, 2020 the final report has been received has been being revised into ADA compliant version and submitted to publications 11/22/2020 The final meeting has been completed. Report has not been published as of this date.[br /]
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The PI on the project passed away unexpectedly in mid-February. Though a draft final report was submitted in January, more time is needed to complete the final report. The report was submitted mid summer and submitted to publications 11/22/2020.

The Issue

Chemical water treatment systems used to reduce scaling and inhibit biological degradation have typically been used in large central plants, industrial refrigeration plants, and other large cooling systems. Non-chemical treatment systems have the potential to reduce consumption of water by allowing more cycles of concentration in this equipment, as well as reducing the quantity and toxicity of discharge to wastewater treatment plants. The Vortex Process Technology has the potential to increase energy efficiency and reduce water use but there are uncertainties associated with long term performance, effectiveness, energy savings and cost effectiveness.

Project Innovation

This agreement is funding the full-scale deployment demonstration of the Vortex Process Technology in cooling towers of commercial buildings. This technology has been used successfully in Europe and will be testing in California to address state specific goals for water and energy savings.

Project Benefits

Non-chemical water treatment has the potential to reduce water use, improve quality of water discharged to wastewater stream, reduce scaling in condenser water piping, and increase energy efficiency of chilled water plants. The Vortex technology removes calcium carbonate from recycled cooling water and improves viscosity. By removing calcium carbonate physically it reduces the amount of chemicals used in calcium removal methods.

Lower Costs


This project has the potential to reduce energy and water costs in commercial buildings. The energy savings is due to improved cooling tower efficiency and heat transfer in cooling equipment. This project is estimated to reduce electricity use by 3 to 5 percent, excluding embedded energy savings from reduced water pumping and water treatment. The water savings is due to allowing higher cycles of concentration and supply water usage.

Environmental & Public Health

Environmental Sustainability

As less chemicals are used in the treatment of the water in cooling towers, this could reduce discharge of toxic materials into wastewater stream.

Increase Safety


Reduces use of hazardous chemicals, thereby reducing exposure of maintenance personnel.

Key Project Members

Project Member

Mukesh Khattar



Cypress LTD


Match Partners


Electric Power Research Institute, Inc.


Cypress LTD


Contact the Team