Passion for treating water brought me to Adven
I fell in love with water treatment processes at a young age back in Colombia, and now I help Adven’s customers get the best water treatment solutions to the benefit of the environment. I am Angela Eslava and I work as Concept Developer at Adven.
When I was young, maybe 10 years old, my school took us to a wastewater treatment plant to see how treating wastewater would improve the condition of the local river.
The different steps within the treatment made be love the process. Especially the flocculation-coagulation part was very exciting. I promised myself that one day I would create water treatments myself.
I asked the operators what they had studied, which eventually led me to study chemical engineering at the “Universidad Nacional de Colombia” university in Colombia.
An environmentalist’s dream comes true
I am an environmentalist at heart, so I wanted a job where I could make an impact on the environment.
My thesis focused on an advanced oxidation process for removing organic material from surface waters at the municipal water treatment plant. In the same plant, we also investigated how to improve the pre-treatment of municipal wastewater and after that I did an internship working with waste-to-value projects.
These experiences made me think more about the balance of my studies, which were mostly focused on the operational side of things. Since we also need to consider what is happening with the society, what are the trends in the world, and what is the real cost of a solution when you analyze it in the wider picture, I decided to study a master in circular economy and risk management at the Tampere University of Applied Sciences.
Thanks to my studies I managed to realize my childhood dream.
Now at Adven, I am helping companies find the best solutions to treat raw water, wastewater, and process water to comply with the local regulations, minimize their use of resources, and decrease their overall water footprint. We work with many water-intensive industries where the water usage can be the same size as a city with half a million citizens.
Just by improving the water treatments at one industry we can make a huge impact in the environment and at the same time help companies to improve their profitability.
Big projects, big impact
Every case starts with creating an understanding of the facility where the water solution is needed. For this, we work together with our customers, because no-one knows their facilities better than themselves!
They provide information about, for example, the water resources available at site, the quality and amounts needed, variations throughout the year, infrastructure and so on. Then we have a brainstorming of what solutions would make sense in that case. For this part, it is important to have a good understanding of the core process of the plant, because this might open new possibilities.
It is not just about treating water, it is about finding the optimal solution for the customer and the environment, so reducing water consumption is always on our minds!
Once we have identified the most reasonable alternatives, the real engineering starts: we create a rough concept, perform pre-feasibility studies, evaluate the business potential, and get all the documentation ready to start the pre-engineering phase.
Talking with technology providers is also a big part of our daily work. The more we develop the project, the better the accuracy in our estimations.
Finland has, of course, a lot of water, but even here, low levels in lakes force industries to take actions. Often, reducing the water intake by treating and reusing water over and over again is the only solution to take the pressure from lakes and other water bodies. We started help one of our customers with his for already several years ago.
Creating concepts that makes a big positive impact to the environment gives meaning to my work.
Now Adven has more than 180 water treatment applications, mostly in make-up water production and flue gas condensate treatments, but also, wastewater and process water treatment, raw water production, cooling water, and wastewater sludge incineration.
Networking on LinkedIn
In Adven and the Finnish working culture in general, I appreciate the lack of hierarchy. I can have lunch with the CEO and talk about films or anything; this would not be possible in Colombia.
Being open to interact with all sorts of people may have something to do with how I got my first job in Finland and this job at Adven. When I came to this country, I had no networks, so I went to LinkedIn, studied how its algorithm works, made my profile attractive, and then started to contact companies that I found interesting and spoke to people who were working there – just trying to get contacts.
Through these contacts I got my first job, as well as my job at Adven.
I joined Adven in August 2020, and since then the company has kept on growing. This gives an opportunity for people to grow as well – either by stepping further in their careers or exploring new roles.
Right now, the concept team is the best for me. It is full of super smart people who are also very innovative. They are always ready to share their knowledge; if you are just curious and want to learn, they will take the time to explain.
I have learned a lot from my time in Adven, so I am planning to keep growing professionally in this company.