Reverse osmosis water treatment is a surprisingly effective way of reintroducing wastewater back into your supply by purifying it through a straightforward filtration system. It can prove quite beneficial for businesses which would see a large volume of contaminated water produced and would like ways to bring costs down. In fact, it’s such a reliable process that even astronauts use it.
Here is everything you need to know about reverse osmosis and how it could help your business.
Without getting too bogged down in the details, when we’re looking at reverse osmosis for a business’ water supply, we’re merely using a filtration system to remove impurities from water.
Reverse osmosis is the process of moving contaminated wastewater through a network of filters and semi-permeable membranes to purify water which can then be reintroduced back into your local system.
The magic lies in how water reacts to being forced through a membrane. When contaminated water flows through the membrane, a process known as cross-flow filtration occurs, meaning only oxygen and hydrogen pass through. The elements are separated and then meet on the other side to form water.
Think of it like making coffee in a cafetière. You want the water to pass through but would hate to pour a cup and have little bits floating in there.
No. Most systems work on a simple three-step process:
There are a few things which can limit the production of clean water back in the system. The most obvious would be that water can’t be recycled repeatedly due to the extraction of the concentrate.
In some systems, the concentrate is sent back into the local system. If you were to keep trying to push purified water through a system too much, the membrane which filters the hydrogen and oxygen out is going to be put under too much stress, resulting in problems with water re-entry.
Another problem, although rare to come by in the UK, is the use of very hard water in the filtration system. When contaminated water with higher levels of calcium and magnesium needs filtering, you’re going to see a build-up of scale, which again impacts the membrane (think of it like scale you get in your kettle).
It is a simple concept and can be surprisingly effective for large businesses which use a lot of water (hundreds of litres a day) and want to curb bills. However, this process can usually be scaled to size for smaller businesses that are looking to reduce dependence too.
Pretty much any business can see significant improvements by implementing some form of osmosis treatment. Industries which can benefit the most would include Agriculture, Brewing, Food & Drink and Hotel & Leisure.
No, there are many ways a business can improve its internal water network. Treatments like anaerobic digestion, filtration, oxygenation, and waste heat recovery can help tremendously.
Find out more about the management services Castle Water customers can make use of here.
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