Keith Minnich

Keith Minnich BCE, MSE, PE (Wisconsin), P.Eng. (Alberta)

Keith joined WaterSMART as a Special Advisor in 2012, where he provides technical support for water and wastewater projects in the oil and gas sector. He has over 35 years of industrial water treatment experience in the Americas, the Middle East, and Asia with an emphasis on recycle and reuse of water using evaporators.

Keith is widely published and is an internationally recognized expert in many areas, including: Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) technologies and applications; hydraulic fracturing water sourcing, flowback and produced water management; produced water conversion to boiler feedwater; and thermal desalination.

Throughout his career, Keith has held a variety of senior and executive level positions in engineering, engineering management, project management, general management, and business development. He is also an inventor or co-inventor of ten patents and patent applications related to heavy oil recovery.

As a Process Engineer, Keith had direct design responsibility for five high salinity water treatment projects which included pilot plant testing. He has also worked as an Engineering Manager where he was responsible for design teams who completed more than 25 projects.

Other professional highlights include:

  • Due diligence and risk assessments reviews for ZLD systems, including membrane, evaporator and crystallizer designs, and projected system performance.
  • Development of water management strategies, including sourcing, reuse and disposal, for hydraulic fracturing operations.
  • Water treatment process concept development, pilot testing, and detailed design for brine concentration and thermal desalination systems.
  • Operational troubleshooting and recommendations for plant modifications to improve performance and reduce costs.
Keith grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania near the Delaware River which was terribly polluted, primarily a result of inadequate industrial and municipal wastewater treatment. Comparing descriptions of what the river had once been to the sights and smells of the river in the 1960s convinced Keith he wanted to focus his life’s work on making it better.

Keith received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Delaware in Civil Engineering in 1977. Following that, he earned his Master’s degree from the University of Michigan, focusing on water, including economics and public policy.

Selected Publications

Jana Vander Kloet, Roberta Wasylishen and Keith Minnich, “Tight Oil and Gas Innovation Roadmap, Water Management Chapter”, Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada, May 2017.

Jana Vander Kloet and Keith Minnich, “Case Study of Scale Control: CaSO4 Seeded Slurry Brine Concentrators and Two Produced Water Evaporator Technologies”, presented at the Produced Water Society, Houston, January 19, 2017.

Keith Minnich, “Produced Water Treatment for Industrial and Agricultural Reuse”, presented at the GWI Produced Water Open Innovation Workshop, Abu Dhabi, April 18, 2016.
Keith Minnich and Jana Vander Kloet, “Technology and Pilot Testing Evaluation Process”, Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada, December 2015.

Keith Minnich and Tom Pankratz, “Zero Liquid Discharge and Brine Concentration Workshop”, Houston, TX, January 12, 2015.Technology and Pilot Testing Evaluation Process, co-author, Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada, December 2015.

Zero Liquid Discharge and Brine Concentration Workshop, Co-Presenter, January 12 2015, Houston, Texas

Decision Tree and Guidance Manual for Fracturing Fluid Reuse, co-author and industry lead, Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada, March 2012.

A Water Chemistry Perspective on Flowback Reuse with Several Case Studies, Keith Minnich, presented USEPA Technical Workshop for the Hydraulic Fracturing Study: Water Resources Management, March 29-30, 2011, Arlington, Virginia.

Innovations in Produced Water Treatment for SAGD, IWC 08-54, Dorothy Neu, Keith Minnich, and Mark Nicholson; presented at the International Water Conference, San Antonio, 2008.

Developments in Evaporator Technologies for SAGD, Minnich, K., Nicholson, M., and Neu, D.; presented at the Oil Sands and Heavy Oil Conference Proceedings, July 2007.

A Unique Method for Recycling and Reuse of Desalinated Water – Case Histories, Ram Kumar, Keith R Minnich, Dorothy A. Neu, Mark C. Nicholson; presented at the IDA World Congress on Desalination and Water Sciences Bahamas, 2003.

Solid Stainless Steel for MSF Once Through Plants, Elisabet Alfonsson, Arne Berquist, Jan Olsson, Keith Minnich, and John Tonner; presented at the IDA World Congress on Desalination and Water Sciences Madrid, November 1997.

A Comparison of Heat Transfer Requirements and Evaporator Cost for MED-TC and MSF, Keith Minnich, John Tonner, and Dorothy Neu; presented at the IDA World Congress on Desalination and Water Sciences Abu Dhabi, November 1995.

Enhanced Once Through MSF, John B. Tonner, Dorothy A. Neu, Keith Minnich; presented at the IDA World Congress on Desalination and Water Sciences Abu Dhabi, November 1995.

When the Regulations Get Tough: Advanced Treatment of FGD Blowdown, Marek K. Mierzewski, Dave Ciszewski, and Keith Minnich; presented at the Power Conference, October 1993, Boston Massachusetts.

A Sludge Disposal Plan for the Boston Area, Susan Santos, Irwin Klein, Carl Koch, and Keith Minnich; presented at the ASCE 1979 National Conference on Environmental Engineering, July 1979, San Francisco, California.