Date of Graduation


Document Type

UAF Access Only - Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering

Degree Level



Chemical Engineering


Michael D. Ackerson


Hydraulic fracturing operations produce large amounts of produced water which is generally disposed of in deep-injection wells. A treatment process was designed to process this water into a clean brine that is suitable for reuse within hydraulic fracturing operations, and to prevent the potential contamination of groundwater and increased seismic activity, a concern associated with deep well injection. Sand filtration and coagulation/flocculation with DAF are both used in water treatment to remove solids and other impurities. These were both tested experimentally to determine if they are capable of treating large amounts of produced water with minimal costs. Coagulation/flocculation with a DAF unit was more effective at creating a clean brine that could be reused in hydraulic fracturing than the sand filtration. The designed bench apparatus produced a clean brine with a turbidity of 5.8 NTU and 0.42 mg/L of total organic carbon compared with specifications in the task statement of 25 NTU and 30 mg/L. A treatment process was developed with this technology that will process 20,000 bbl/day of produced water, with the ability to be scaled up to 100,000 bbl/day, with a fixed capital investment (FCI) of $3.2 million and an annual operating cost of $2.02/m3 of produced water treated.


produced water, coagulation/flocculation, dissolved air floatation (DAF), sand filtration, hydraulic fracturing, service learning