Cater Plant Processes


Flow Control
Automated control of raw water from Lauro Reservoir is provided by a new electronic throttling valve that controls flow into the Cater WTP.

A new pumped diffusion flash mix system imparts tremendous energy to the raw water, improving coagulation and reducing chemical consumption.

New vertical turbine mixers enhance flocculation, a gentle mixing process that promotes particle collisions, resulting in larger particles that are removed in later processes.

Flocculated particles are removed downstream in the sedimentation basins by gravity.

Nine dual-media gravity filters remove the majority of remaining particles and provide high quality filtered water. Granular activated carbon is used to remove dissolved taste and odor causing compounds.

A 5-million gallon reservoir provides contact time for the disinfection of Giardia, viruses, and other pathogens by sodium hypochlorite, in addition to providing storage for the City of Santa Barbara.

Pump Stations
Finished water is delivered to portions of Santa Barbara South County via seven vertical turbine booster pumps.

Filler Backwash and Air Scour
New backwash pumps and an air scour blower provide improved cleaning to maintain optimal filter performance.

Chemical Feed
Chemicals used for treatment processes are stored in the new Operations Annex Building. The building provides facilities for control and monitoring of chemical addition.

A new filter-to-waste system improves filter performance by intercepting filtered water that could have higher turbidity during initial startup of the filters. This water is recovered and returned to the front of the treatment plant.

Soils Handling
Solids removed during the sedimentation and filtration process are stored in the new solids recovery basins. Water is decanted and recycled to the head of the plant, and solids are solar-dried and then taken off-site.

Recycled Water
Water collected from the filter-to-waste and solids recovery basins is blended with the raw water for subsequent treatment in the water plant. This process improves production efficiency and recovers up to 10 percent of the total plant flow.

Electrical Systems
The "nerve center" of the treatment plant was upgraded by replacing existing control centers and housing them in the new Operations Annex Building. Also located in the building is a new diesel-powered standby generator that provides the ability to maintain