Romtec Utilities designs, supplies, and engineers pumping systems for all types of applications, including stormwater management. Designing stormwater pump stations today often requires that additional systems are included to improve the efficiency and sustainability of the stormwater infrastructure. One of these are modular wetland systems, which provide a reliable way to treat stormwater locally and reducing the strain on water treatment plants. Modular wetland systems are valuable tools for stormwater infrastructure and are even a requirement for new developments in some areas.
Before diving into how modular wetland systems work it is important to understand why they are necessary in stormwater infrastructure today. In an undeveloped area, rainfall is deposited on the ground and is absorbed into the ground or evaporates into the air. Rainwater is filtered naturally as it permeates down and eventually rejoins the water table underground. Urban areas have many impervious surfaces that disrupt the water cycle like sidewalks, roads, and rooftops. Modular wetland systems emulate the natural water filtration process to treat collected stormwater locally and often do not require additional treatment. Some states, like California, even require modular wetland systems on new developments to manage their water resources more responsibly.
All modular wetland systems emulate the natural filtration process. Rather than soil filtering pollutants from stormwater, the biofilter in a modular wetland system can use an engineered media or a natural media, like wood chips or bark mulch. Pollutants are transferred from collected stormwater to the chosen media when flowing through the system. The filtering media bed will eventually need to be replaced, but when this is necessary depends heavily on which media is chosen. This filtration process is the core functionality of all modular wetland systems, but the style and appearance of the system can vary greatly.
Modular wetland systems are available in many different styles and configurations to meet different flow rates and volume requirements. Sometimes these systems are installed openly and can even resemble flower beds on sidewalks. Others have been installed completely below-grade with access to the filtration media through a top hatch. Most below-grade systems are installed in areas where an open system is not possible. When an open bed style is appropriate modular wetlands are very customizable and can include a wide variety of plant life. Although many plants are available, the specific plants chosen will typically be suited for the climate of the region and the amount of rainfall the system will see. Plants should be well suited to “wetland” climates as they will have constantly saturated roots.
Modular wetland systems are valuable tools in modern water infrastructure. The natural water cycle is interrupted by impervious surface and these systems serve to emulate natural filtration process. Modular wetlands come in many sizes and styles to meet the flow and volume requirements of each stormwater application. There are many different plants that can be planted in these systems, but the most successful modular wetlands systems take the climate of the area and the amount of rainfall experienced into consideration. Call Romtec Utilities today for more information about modular wetland systems and stormwater pump stations!