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  • Advanced Watertek

The Need of Installing Watermakers in Livestock Carriers

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Livestock carriers are a unique form of transportation used to transport live cattle over maritime routes. Since resources onboard are limited, they need a continuous supply of fresh water.


For this, they require a state-of-the-art Reverse Osmosis (RO) solution, which is:

  • Highly reliable

  • Utilizing the minimum available space

  • Supporting a wide range of seawater temperatures and TDS

  • Compliant with Industry Regulations



Read on to understand how the team at Advanced Watertek approaches such projects and the specific requirements we have to consider. But first, let’s dive a little deeper into what a livestock carrier is.


What is a livestock carrier?

A livestock carrier is a cargo vessel designed to transport live animals such as cows, buffaloes, goats, sheep, etc. They play an important role in the global food supply chain as they link countries exporting cattle to nations with a high demand for high-quality meat and other livestock products.


Livestock carriers tend to be converted second-hand ships and usually carry cattle from Europe and Australia to the Gulf countries.


The need for water in a livestock carrier

Livestock carriers are sustained by three sensitive and critical systems- potable water, ventilation, and fodder systems. If any of these systems malfunctions in the slightest, it can have devastating consequences for the cattle on board.


Let’s take an example:


A livestock carrier typically covers a journey from Australia to the Middle East which would last approximately 28 days. During this time, the carrier requires large amounts of freshwater for the cattle to drink. Freshwater is also needed for the human passengers onboard the vessel- to prepare meals, to drink, and for bathing and cleaning.


The unique requirements of such projects


The delicate ecosystem of livestock carriers as well as the strict regulatory laws regarding the maritime transportation of cattle, make such projects stand out. Livestock owners need to work with an RO desalination company for the task, which has proven its commitment to supplying highly reliable and excellent systems for years.


Once we are brought on onboard, we take the time to dive deep into the client's requirements and create our plan accordingly. Here are some of the factors we have to consider:


The Limited Space

Every square inch in a livestock carrier is valuable, making efficient space utilization essential. With this in mind, we design custom machines that supply consistent water quality of less than 300 ppm while being compact. We study the design and footprint of the vessel to identify the best locations for the machines and strategically place them at optimum locations in the vessels. In addition, we use compact axial piston pumps to reduce the system footprint further.


Furthermore, multiple systems provide a backup solution should one of the systems experience downtime or need maintenance.


The Difference in Sea Water Temperature and TDS

An additional challenge we deal with is the differences in seawater temperatures and TDS. The temperature would vary from frigid Australian winter water to the scalding Middle Eastern summer seas. This could result in a very high TDS, and pressure build-up in the system.


When designing the system, we give special consideration to accounting for the pressure increase due to freezing waters. The system pressure would not exceed 60 bars, even at very low temperatures. Moreover, enough safety devices are provided to protect the system in case of pressure build-up due to human error.


The Industry Regulations

Since such carriers are mainly intended to transport cattle from country to country, they have to follow the country’s regulations for handling livestock transportation, like AMSA for Australia.


Having worked with vessels complying with stringent regulations in the past, the Advanced Watertek team is well-versed in all compliance requirements.


Our years of expertise and ability to craft creative and custom solutions help us exceed our client’s expectations and deliver results we’re proud of. Find out more about our custom-engineered membrane-based solutions today!

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