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Oil Skimmer Blog

How to Successfully Implement Oil Skimmers | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Dec 28, 2022 2:30:00 PM

Removing oil from water is a crucial step in many processes across numerous industries. From extending tool life to staying in compliance with government agencies, oil skimmers provide a cost-effective solution to removing oil from water or coolant.

Understanding How Skimmers Work

Despite the various designs that oil skimmers have, all of them rely on the same basic principles: Specific gravity and Surface tension and affinity.

Specific Gravity: Most hydrocarbons have a lower specific gravity than water. Without agitation, oil separates from the water and floats to the surface.

Surface Tension and Affinity: Normally, oil bonds more tightly to itself and other materials than to water. This affinity, and differences in surface tension between oil and water, cause oils to adhere to a skimming medium.

Understanding The Different Types of Skimmers

Not All Skimmers Are Alike!

  • Belt-type oil skimmers use an endless belt of corrosion resistant steel or synthetic medium, which is lowered into the tank or vessel to be skimmed.
  • Tube oil skimmers use a floating plastic hose that snakes out over the surface of the liquid and is then drawn back through the drive unit where oil is removed.
  • Disk-type oil skimmers rotate a disk-shaped medium through the liquid. Oil is wiped off and discharged into a collection container in a manner similar to belt-type oil skimmers.

Bigger Isn’t Always Better & Smaller Isn’t Always Cheaper

Choosing a skimmer based on size speculation can be a costly mistake. Buying the smallest skimmer available because it is the cheapest or purchasing the biggest skimmer because you think it will work faster will not lead to successful skimming results.

Make A Plan Before Buying Oil Skimmer

Planning is important! Before spending money on a concrete pad and mounting arrangements, check where the oil actually collects in your process.

  • Oil skimmers should be located opposite from the inflow and the tail pulley should be submerged two inches below the surface of the liquid in order to be as effective as possible.
  • Using a tank that does not allow enough time for the oil to rise and float will not permit successful oil skimming.
  • Always make sure your tank gives enough residence time for the oil to float.

Selecting an oil skimmer can be a complex decision-making process. There are various factors you have to consider about your application when choosing the right skimmer. However, Abanaki oil skimmers are durable and built to last, even in harsh applications. They have been proven in thousands of applications and are an environmental solution to unwanted oil in water.

Selecting and sizing your next oil skimmer correctly is important – the wrong decision can cost your facility thousands over the long term. Learn how Abanaki oil skimmers help you save by "taking just a little off the top." by watching the webinar below.

 


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



You are just one step away from downloading Abanaki's most detailed resource on our oil skimming equipment. Simply click at the button to get your ultimate guide now.

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Topics: groundwater remediation, coolant maintenance, industrial wastewater

Oil Skimmers Help Dirty Jobs in Steel Mills | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Nov 18, 2022 1:30:00 PM

Oil skimming is a dirty job. However, it is an important part of numerous industries. Some industries utilize oil skimmers to help stay in compliance with EPA regulations and to keep hydrocarbons out of the environment. Other industries need oil skimmers to help prolong tool life or keep the work place a healthy place for the plant operators. Regardless of the reason, oil skimmers offer a simple, cost-effective, and environmentally sound solution to removing hydrocarbons from any application.

Oil Skimmers Get the Dirty Jobs Done

Steel mills worldwide use Abanaki oil skimmers to help handle some of the dirties jobs on site. In the video below oil skimmers are shown cleaning burned lubricant from a wash tank. In steel laminating facilities, big ball bearings are lubricated during the process. However due to the extreme heat of the operation, some of the lubricant burns, creating a charred goop that needs to be removed from the process. This is where the oil skimmer steps in and does the job that no one wants to do. Clean up all of the burnt and foul-smelling muck!

 

Model 8 Belt Oil Skimmer

The Model 8 belt oil skimmer is the perfect wastewater oil skimmer for this job. It utilizes a continuous belt and wiper system to remove up to 40 gallons of oil per hour from the fluid surface. The belt, operating on a motor and pulley system, runs through contaminated liquid to pick up oil from the surface. After traveling over the head pulley, the belt passes through tandem wiper blades where oil is scraped off both sides of the belt and discharged. The tail pulley has flanges which allow it to roll freely on the inside of the belt without becoming dislodged. It requires no bearings and does not need to be fastened to the tank. If turbulent conditions exist, an optional tether and cage assembly prevents the tail pulley from being dislodged.

Oil skimming can be a tough and dirty job, however with the help of oil skimmers the job can get completely efficiently. Would an oil skimmer help with your application? Need help determining which oil skimmer would work best? Use our new interactive oil skimmer selection guide and find the perfect skimmer for your dirty job!


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



You are just one step away from downloading Abanaki's most detailed resource on our oil skimming equipment. Simply click at the button to get your ultimate guide now.

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Topics: oil skimming, model 8, industrial wastewater

Tube Oil Skimmer is Perfect Solution for Shallow Applications | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Mar 22, 2022 2:15:00 PM

Tube oil skimmer can be used in wastewater applications that are shallow in depth. Plus, tube oil skimmer is a great fit where a belt skimmer is too big.

The Abanaki Oil Viper tube oil skimmer 

The Abanaki Oil Viper tube oil skimmer is a surface oil skimmer that effectively removes floating oils by means of an oleophilic (oil attracting) ¾-inch diameter continuous looped tube. Due to the sleek design of the Oil Viper tube oil skimmer, it can skim in just inches of water compared to a belt skimmer which could need one to two feet of water to skim from.

The Oil Viper tube oil skimmer works off the same principle of the belt skimmer, the tube breaks the surface tension of the water, the oil is then collected and skimmed off by its unique wipe clean design. Two tube materials are available, the standard tube is great in a wide variety of applications; the high temperature tube is best suited for high temperature or caustic applications.

Oil Viper tube oil skimmer features:

  • Compact design fits almost any tank or pit
  • Explosion proof motors available
  • Tubes with up to 100-foot reach
  • Safety shut-off switch for safe operation
  • Simple and effective drive design for lasting performance
  • Unique wiping system for more effective oil skimming

Where to Use the Oil Viper?

The Oil Viper is a compact, versatile Abanaki skimmer. Its size and removal capacity make it suitable for most applications. From a mere shimmer on top of water to a heavy oil slick, the Oil Viper performs efficiently, removing up to 100 gallons of oil per hour.

Typical Applications:

Rugged Construction for Harsh Conditions

The Oil Viper is designed to last for many years. With the proper configuration it can handle liquid temperatures up to 212°F, and the pH of the fluid can range from 3 to 13. The skimmer drive includes an oil filled gear reducer with bronze gears and ball bearings. The motor, gear reducer, and powder coated finish of the weldments give the Oil Viper exceptionally long life, even under the harshest conditions.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



See the Oil Viper tube oil skimmer in action!

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Topics: oil viper tube skimmer, industrial oil Skimmers, industrial wastewater

Easiest Way to Remove Oil from Coolant or Water| Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jan 26, 2022 10:55:06 AM

It is a common question asked every day by people in all fields of industry. Machine shops, steel mills, industrial manufacturers, and many others are faced with the problem of removing oils from coolants and wastewater on an everyday basis. They are faced with high disposal and maintenance costs. Some manufacturers are charged extreme amounts to have their contaminated water treated properly by their local water treatment facility.

Why Remove Oil from Coolant or Water?

Companies look for effective ways to remove oil from coolant or water to reduce costs and the liability of proper disposal. Another reason for removing the oil is a better work environment. Letting oil remain in the coolant tank allows anaerobic bacteria to grow. Anaerobic bacteria break down the components of coolant, causing it to need changing more frequently. Oil-laden coolant with a high anaerobic bacteria content has two other drawbacks as well. The first drawback is an unpleasant odor caused by the bacteria. The second drawback the smoke generated from the oil-laden coolant coming in contact with the operating cutting tool. One of the easiest ways to remove hydrocarbons from water or coolant is by using a belt oil skimmer. It is a low maintenance, easy to use tool for removing oil from water or coolant. 

Why Belt Oil Skimmer?

Belt oil skimmers work because of the differences in specific gravity between oil and water. Water has a specific gravity of one. Most oils have a specific gravity of less than one. Because of these differences, oil floats to the top of the water where it can be removed. A belt oil skimmer uses oil oleophilic material, (usually made of stainless steel or plastic), in the form of a belt to break the surface tension of the water to attract and collect the floating oil.

The belt passes through a set of wiper blades via a motorized head pulley where the oil is wiped off both sides of the belt. The oil then flows through the skimmer troughs and into a proper disposal container. Because the belt materials used do not attract water, very little coolant or water is picked up.

Advantages of Using Belt Oil Skimmer

Some of the advantages of using a belt oil skimmer over other methods to remove oil are the lower initial cost compared to coalescers and other filtration systems, low maintenance, no filters to change, and no mess involved as with absorbent booms or pads. With an oil skimmer, virtually the only required maintenance is replacing a belt and wiper blade set as needed.

Next, Abanaki oil skimmers require very little operating space, usually with no modification to the tank. Finally, our oil skimmers have pick-up rates of up to 200 gph with minimal water or coolant content. Other forms of oil removal cannot perform as well.

Wide Variety of Abanaki Belt Oil Skimmers

Abanaki Corporation manufactures a wide variety of oil skimmers to meet any size application. From a small coolant tank in a CNC lathe to a scale pit in a steel mill, Abanaki Corporation can supply a skimmer to do the job. We manufacture skimmers that can remove from 1 gallon per hour to 200 gallons per hour. We offer turnkey systems with a variety of motors, heat options, stands, and oil concentrators. Our skimmers are used on parts washers, in car washes, wells, steel mills, and any other industry where hydrocarbons need to be removed.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


How to Successfully Implement Oil Skimmers

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Topics: industrial oil Skimmers, industrial wastewater, Ground Remediation

Simple Rules for Buying an Oil Skimmer | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Dec 16, 2021 9:13:58 AM

When deciding on what oil skimmer is right for your application, there are many things that need to be considered and addressed before purchasing. Knowing what size skimmer to buy all depends on specifics of the application at hand. If you think buying the biggest skimmer available is the right choice because it will get the job done faster or buying the smallest skimmer will be more cost-effective, then you would be a fool. Don’t be a fool. Let us help you pick out the right size!

Size of the Skimmed Area

First thing to remember when selecting a size is that oil skimmers should be selected by the size of the area that needs to be skimmed, not just by the amount of oil needing to be removed. Choosing an oil skimmer that has the capacity to remove at least 2 times the capacity needed by the application should be the deciding factor.

Other Factors to be Considered

Oil skimmer capacities are based on optimum conditions and homogeneity of oil. Viscosity, temperature of the water, and other factors can affect the amount of hydrocarbons picked up by an oil skimmer, and thus need to be taken into consideration.

Plus, you need the proper media on your skimmer in order to ensure the best results. And if you think all belt types or materials operate the same or that simply picking the cheapest option will suffice, you’re wrong and you’d be setting yourself up for failure. You can have a skimmer that is top of the line, but if you have the wrong belt, tube, or disc material on it then it won’t matter how great of a skimmer you have in that tank. Your results will be less than stellar.

It is impossible to accurately predict how fast your oil will be picked up. So don’t even try, wise guy.

The most important rule to follow when choosing a size is to purchase a skimmer that is rated at least twice the capacity needed. If you’re still having questions download our 7 Pitfalls of Oil Skimming. This handy guidebook helps you through the sizing and buying process.


How to Successfully Implement Oil Skimmers

 


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



You are just one step away from downloading Abanaki's most detailed resource on our oil skimming equipment. Simply click at the button to get your ultimate guide now.

Get Your E-Book

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Topics: groundwater remediation, coolant maintenance, industrial wastewater

How to Increase Oil Removal Rates In Steel Mills | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Oct 26, 2021 9:17:13 AM

Industrial wastewater pits are treacherous. Nasty, bubbling, caustic black ooze swirling about in water is something nightmares are made of. The thought of having to remove all of that nasty seems like a daunting task and for some plant operators, it is. Keeping the wastewater clean is crucial for steel mills.

Contaminated water can result in sludge formation, producing environments for bacteria to grow and thrive, the production of rust and corrosion, and a list of other horrific things that will cause pain and misery to the equipment and application as a whole. Some facilities just need to keep the wastewater clean, while others need to keep it clean and reclaim the used oil. It’s a big job to take on and not all oil skimmers are cut out for the challenge.

Oil Removal Problems in Big Tanks

We had a customer contact us about a steel mill operation that didn’t seem to be running as it should. We visited the location to get a better understanding of what was going right or wrong. The company was using a competitor’s tube skimmer and this particular model was just not able to handle the grime and muck in a manner that was productive for the operators. The oil removal rates were low and recovery of the waste oil was not as efficient as they were hoping.

These are big tanks that need a big oil skimmer to tackle the jobs at hand, both cleaning the wastewater and a way to reclaim used oil. After going over the specifications of the tanks and getting a better understanding of what kind of results the plant operators were trying to achieve, we knew that the operation would benefit immensely from implementing a Model MB Oil Grabber.

Abanaki Model MB Oil Grabber

The Model MB utilizes continuous belts and wipers to remove up to 200 gallons of oil per hour from the fluid surface. The belts, operating on a motor and pulley system, run through contaminated liquid to pick up oil from the surface. After traveling over the head pulley, the belts pass through tandem wiper blades where oil is scraped off both sides of each belt and discharged. The tail pulleys have flanges which allow them to roll freely on the inside of the belts without becoming dislodged. These lower pulleys require no bearings and do not need to be fastened to the tank. If turbulent conditions exist, an optional tether and cage assembly prevents the tail pulleys from being dislodged.

The Model MB was designed for applications like this. When removal capacities are not being achieved in an application, you bring out the heavy-duty equipment. The Model MB is available in multiples of 2, 3, or 5 belts. Wastewater sumps, coolant sumps, outdoor lakes, ponds, or basins, underground tanks, food processing plants, parking lots, garages, service facilities, truck, locomotive, and other mobile equipment washing stations have all benefited from using the Model MB as a wastewater cleaning system.

This skimmer was built to last for years in harsh environments. It can handle temperatures up to 212°F and in pH levels ranging from 1-13. The belts are made up of corrosion-resistant steel, carbon steel, or a specially engineered polymer. The Model MB requires very little space in the tank or sump, easily mounts, and requires very little maintenance.

After replacing the former skimmers with the Model MB, the company reported the recovery rates are 4x higher than before. 


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



 

Abanaki Model MB Oil Grabber In Operation

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Topics: removal rates, model mb, industrial wastewater

Not Telling Your Consultant or Vendor Everything? | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Sep 30, 2021 10:45:00 AM

Oil skimmer selection can be a very complex process. There are numerous factors that go into selecting the right oil skimmer for your particular application. If the oil skimmer vendor does not know what chemicals or heat you have in your application, the wrong oil skimmer and belt materials could be selected, and the job will not get done correctly.

It is important that you gather as much information about your application as possible when you’re ready to consult a vendor. Describing every component of your process and all the contents of the tanks is crucial. Tell us everything!

Consider:

These are all conversation points that your vendor should inquire about and you should have answers to. Remember: in order to make the most out of your oil skimmer, the right skimmer and belt material needs to be selected to work perfectly with your application!

Remember…

Selecting an oil skimmer can be a complex decision-making process. There are various factors you have to consider about your application when choosing the right skimmer. Abanaki oil skimmers are durable and built to last, even in harsh applications. They have been proven in thousands of applications and are an environmental solution to unwanted oil in water. Abanaki sales reps have a vast knowledge on a wide variety of industrial applications. They are always available for phone calls, emails, or on-site consultations to help you find the right skimmer for your application.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


Abanaki has a new reference that can help you choose the right skimmer and the right size to ensure years of worry-free operation.

Click button below to access our “How to Successfully Implement Oil Skimmers” webinar to learn how to get the most out of your skimmer.

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Topics: groundwater remediation, coolant maintenance, industrial wastewater

Oil Skimmers Suitability for Outdoor Application | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Aug 31, 2021 11:00:00 AM

In outdoor applications, the use of heaters may be required to keep skimmed product fluid so it can be effectively removed from the medium and collection tray. This is particularly true for grease skimming, which involves higher viscosity at all temperatures. Polymer materials are limited in their heat tolerance, so oil skimmers equipped with these media may have only tray heaters.

Oil Skimmers Accessories

Oil skimmers with steel media can apply heat to both the tray and the medium, which improves performance in severe winter climates. To resist corrosion, a stainless-steel housing also may be needed. Above ground enclosures and underground manway mounting kits provide additional protection from the elements.

Commonly used materials for wiper blades are nitrile, [CRV] and ceramics. Nitrile is suitable for use as high as 176° F in neutral pH liquids. For higher temperatures and acidic or alkaline liquids, [CRV] wipers work well. Ceramics are resistant to more chemicals, but are prone to breakage.

For hazardous duty locations with ignitable fumes, explosion-proof motors are mandatory. Special corrosion resistant motor housings may be required for sanitary washdown situations in food plants. Different voltages and power frequencies are needed for some plants.

In many applications, oil skimmers can run unattended for days or weeks. This is typical for groundwater remediation applications at remote well sites. When controls are used, they tend to be either manual on/off switches or 24-hour timers to start and stop the unit at predetermined times.

Oil Skimmer Reliability and Maintenance

Oil skimmers require a certain amount of routine maintenance, primarily periodic cleaning and checking wiper blade adjustment. Easy removal of safety covers shielding the moving medium and its pulleys will reduce maintenance time.

In terms of drive designs, those with separate gear reducers tend to be somewhat more robust than unitary gear motor drives. Chain drives, which are found on a few models, need to be lubricated regularly and the chain should be protected from debris and other impediments.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


Abanaki Model 8 Belt Skimmer in Operation

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Topics: industrial oil Skimmers, industrial wastewater, Ground Remediation

Oil Skimming for Wastewater Recycling | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Aug 26, 2021 3:45:00 PM

As large generators of oily wastewater tighten effluent controls, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is targeting smaller generators. Some of the firms receiving their attention are smaller manufacturing plants, automotive garages, mobile equipment service shops and truck farms. Many of these firms do not have access to a sanitary sewer system that will accept oily wastewater.

Because disposal in storm sewers also is prohibited, they frequently use injection wells, septic system drain-fields, dry wells and ground pits to dispose of oily wastewater; one EPA concern is that oily wastewater will find its way into an underground aquifer that is a source of drinking water.

Many oily wastes contain organic and inorganic chemicals in concentrations that exceed the primary drinking water standards established by the Safe Drinking Water Act. So, the focus of one EPA program is aimed at preventing contamination of groundwater by controlling oily wastewater recycling at the generator’s site.

Getting Rid of Oily Wastewater

If oily wastewater isn’t recycled, it must be disposed of safely. One option is to have it collected and hauled away by a licensed disposal firm. The annual volume of oily wastewater generated by many shops and plants makes hauling too costly.

Even firms connected to sanitary or industrial wastewater sewer systems have limitations on the oil content in their effluent. When oil concentration exceeds a certain level, usually 100 ppm or less, the generator can get hit with hefty surcharges by the local government providing wastewater treatment.

At some level of oil concentration, the oily water effluent is prohibited from entering the sanitary sewer line.

Wastewater Recycling

With wastewater recycling, the most common methods of oil/water separation include decanting tanks, oil skimming, coalescing, membrane separation and various chemical treatments. Any of these methods can be effective. Selection should be based on economic as well as technical considerations.

Although it is a cost-effective method of reducing contamination, oil skimming often is overlooked as a primary technique. Frequently, this results from the misperception that skimming is only suitable as a pretreatment ahead of other oil/water separation devices.

Certainly, skimming is a retreatment method used to prevent oil overloads in downstream membranes, coalescers and sand bed filters. But it can stand alone as an oil removal method in many applications, reducing oil to only a few parts per million concentrations, depending on conditions. In many locales, this is good enough to allow the water to enter a sanitary sewer system without paying connection surcharges.

More exotic methods of oil removal, such as membrane filtration and chemical treatment, are most often required when tight emulsions and other chemicals must be removed. If an emulsion is the water-in-oil type, a skimmer may do the job.

Types of Oil Skimmers

Oil skimmers usually incur a low initial cost, install easily, offer rugged construction, reliable operation and minimal upkeep. Training personnel for operation, monitoring and routine maintenance is nil.

Still, there are different types of skimmers, and each application requires some analysis to make the best selection. Also, the water collection system must be set up properly in order to get maximum performance from the skimmer.

The six major skimmer configurations for industrial plants and service shops are belt, disk, drum, mop, tube and floating suction types. For all types, the oil or other hydrocarbon liquids must be floating on top of the water. For all but the floating suction type, a moving skimmer medium is pulled through or across the surface to attract the oil.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com



You are just one step away from downloading Abanaki's most detailed resource on our oil skimming equipment. Simply click at the button to get your ultimate guide now.

Get Your E-Book

Read More

Topics: oil skimming, industrial wastewater, wastewater recycling

Industrial Wastewater Skimmers for Steel Mills | Abanaki

Posted by Tom Hobson on Jun 29, 2021 10:24:17 AM

Abanaki offers industrial wastewater skimmers specially designed for steel mills where plant maintenance engineers are looking for the lowest cost, most reliable method of removing greases and heavy oils from the steel-mill scale pit. Abanaki oil skimmers use the difference in specific gravity and surface tension between grease and water, allowing the belt to attract grease and oil as the belt passes through the surface of the water. The simple belt-and-motor approach is proven to operate unattended and reliably for decades with little maintenance.

Grease Grabber Oil Skimmer

To avoid fines from government and municipal sewer districts, steel mills must limit the amount of grease in wastewater discharged into the environment. The Grease Grabber® oil and grease skimmer provides a continuously operating belt and wiper that can remove up to 160 gallons per hour of heavy greases and oils. Depending on the characteristics of the liquid, the oil/grease skimmer is capable of reducing grease content to fewer than five parts-per-million in water. Reclaimed grease and oil can be re-used or used as furnace fuel, avoiding sucker truck disposal costs.

How Grease Skimmer Works?

Using a double drive roller and tail pulley system, the grease skimmer belt runs through wastewater to pick up grease and heavy oil from the surface. The belt travels over the head pulley and then passes through tandem wiper blades, from which oil is scraped off both sides and discharged. A heated hopper keeps grease flowing in cold outdoor temperatures.

The tail pulley features flanges that allow the pulley to roll freely on the inside of the belt without becoming dislodged in turbulent applications. No bearings are needed; the unit does not need to be fastened to the tank. An optional tether and cage assembly is offered to prevent the tail pulley from being dislodged. The Grease Grabber oil skimmer can be used in pits with depths as shallow as one foot or as deep as 100 feet.


To learn more about oil skimmers, please contact our experts at 440-543-7400 or visit our website: www.abanaki.com


Abanaki Model 8 Belt Skimmer in Operation

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Topics: steel mills, industrial wastewater, grease skimmer

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