back to listings SME Profile: Environmental Treatment Concepts Ltd

Environmental Treatment Concepts Ltd

1-3 North Park Business Centre
PO17 5LJ

T: 01329 836960
F: 01329 835406



ENiGMA – World leader in Limescale Management, Potable & Wastewater Mineral DeScaling


At the forefront of research into ecological and economical treatment of hard water, the award winning Environmental Treatment Concepts Ltd (ETC), designed and produced the ENiGMA Electronic DeScaler. Since 1989 ETC have grown from humble beginnings of successfully treating domestic water systems to expand, through commercial, government, industrial, maritime, defence and leisure industries where innovative and pragmatic solutions have been achieved through close collaboration with customers and the application of bespoke designs. There is no ‘one size fits all’ in the complex environment of water systems.


Largest Customers to Date

Ministry of Defence.  We have fitted ENiGMA to around 350 Accommodation Buildings (22,000 beds) for all three Armed Services over twelve years.  Sales value £1.4Million.

Southwark Estates.   ENiGMA is fitted on several of the estate’s plant rooms supplying hot water to blocks of flats.  Sales Value £250K.

Atomic Weapons Establishments Aldermaston and Burghfield.  ENiGMA is fitted in most of the Plant Rooms on these sites, treating hot water generators.  Sales value £150K.

University of the West of England.   ENiGMA is protecting the hot water systems in most of their Student Accommodation Buildings’ (113 Plant Rooms to date Aug 18).  Sales Value £160K.

Wagamama Restaurants.   ENiGMA is fitted to 88 of their restaurants’ water systems.  Sales value £250K.

Chocolate Manufacturer.  Not a large sale at £20K however the most recorded savings of any customer.  Since fitting  ENiGMA in 1998 they have saved a total of £26,153,846 by preventing downtime due to limescale (2 days chocolate production lost every 6-8 weeks).


The Problem

It is estimated that limescale costs UK industry over £1billion a year in descaling alone. Further £billions are wasted through lost production, higher energy bills, and early renewal of capital equipment. There are also environmental costs linked to the higher fuel consumption necessary when pipes and heat exchangers are heavily fouled with limescale. Traditionally chemical solutions have been employed, including the installation of water softeners using salt. As well as the cost of consumables and limited life of the equipment, harsh lessons are being learned in the USA where major ecological and environmental damage is occurring through the use of brine to regenerate the softener’s main bed.


Legionella bacteria is common in natural water and is harmless unless inhaled in an atomised form, when it can cause an infection known as Legionnaire's Disease.  In water systems that have significant limescale deposits bacteria will thrive, particularly in cooling towers, hot and cold water systems, recirculated water humidifiers, spas and jacuzzies.

The Solution

ENiGMA is an electronic water conditioner that is applied externally to the pipes of water systems or equipment requiring protection against damaging limescale.  Treatment is applied simply by wrapping a signal cable around the outside of a pipe to form a coil but the value-added is knowing where to apply this treatment; our trained and experienced engineers will survey, design and commission a bespoke solution.  A range of units are available to cover pipe sizes from 8 mm to 1,250 mm.  No cutting into the pipework or additional plumbing is required.


Success Example

The M.O.D.’s choice of Water Treatment

Click here for PDF

The Defence Estates’ multi-million pound ‘SLAM’ project to upgrade Single Living Accommodation for members of the Armed Forces was a 10-year project to supply 30,000 much improved en-suite bed spaces to sites across the UK. Four hotel-standard barrack buildings per month were equipped with ENiGMA.

£1.2 billion construction phase of military accommodation project completed

SLAM’s prime contractor, Debut Services Ltd, were concerned about the damage to water systems due to limescale as they were required to hand over SLAM buildings in an ‘as new’ condition after seven years. Not wishing to incur the considerable cost of replacing hot water systems, it first considered using salt-fed softeners. However, not only did ENiGMA prove more convenient, compact and better value but also doubly attractive was ETC’s focus on product and service quality with high standards of installation, commissioning and long term monitoring.

ETC has unrivalled success in providing a real and effective alternative to base exchange salt softeners that would have a unit cost around £188,000 over the design life of each building. In comparison the whole life cost of employing ENiGMA was estimated at just 1.6% of that amount, with the added benefit of it not destroying the potability of the drinking water. When looked at in terms of the overall project, Debut’s own figures indicate a total saving of some £75million.


SLAM Results

To back up ETC’s performance monitoring through temperature data logging, one of the first installations, at Royal Marines Poole, was opened for visual inspection after 9 months in operation in one of the UK’s hardest water areas. To the delight of the SLAM compliance team the calorifier and its heat exchanger had remained exceedingly clean.

This and other successful projects with the MOD, developed since 1989, has led to many other installations at prestigious military sites in the UK, saving the taxpayers many millions of pounds. This has significantly reduced CO2 emissions, reduced the use of chemicals and extended the life of water-fed appliances and so contributes significantly to the government’s climate change targets and the wider global focus of the Circular Economy.

Single living accommodation modernisation project infographic






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