Reverse osmosis is a method of purifying water by eliminating salts and other contaminates from tap water, sea water and brackish ground water. RO systems prevent bacteria, particles, dyes, proteins, sugars and other undesirable agents from contaminating the water. An RO membrane blocks anything with a molecular weight of more than 150-250 daltons.
Reverse Osmosis Systems
RO systems can be of various sizes, ranging from a few litres per minute to millions of litres per day. Industrial reverse osmosis machines transport input water through diverse filters to eliminate larger particles. The water then runs through a water softener which removes heavy metals, chemicals, odours, and unwanted colour. A pump then applies tremendous pressure to separate out any remaining impurities.
Reverse Osmosis Plants
City municipalities, together with industrial facilities often use RO systems as a source of consistently pure drinking water supply and to transform drinking water to high purity water for industrial use such as in microelectronics, marine and pharmaceutical facilities. Reverse osmosis plants purify water obtained from wells, lakes or rivers. Heavy duty plants are even equipped to desalinate seawater.
Reverse Osmosis Membranes
A highly specialised membrane is the core separation technology used in the reverse osmosis process to block impurities and contaminants. Depending on the quality and temperature of the influent water, along with, permeate and concentrate requirements, various pre-treatment processes (both equipment and chemical) may also be required in order to lessen or eliminate scaling and/or fouling of the RO membrane.
Industrial Reverse Osmosis
industrial reverse osmosis machines use RO technology and can typically accommodate 28,800 to 172,800 litres per day. Input water TDS may range between 1000 ppm to 5000 ppm.
Seawater Reverse Osmosis Plants
RO plants in regions where water is scarce are under a burden to produce adequate water for the surrounding population and therefore operate on a large scale.
Seawater Reverse Osmosis Systems
RO plants which treat seawater utilise high-pressure pumps that force the input water through the surface of a semipermeable membrane containing microscopic pores. Only water molecules are able to flow through the pores. Thus, impurities such as salt, particles, minerals, and other organics are prevented from getting through.
Brackish Reverse Osmosis Systems
As with seawater systems, brackish RO systems utilise membranes with tiny pores that reject bacteria and other pathogens. After filtration, fresh, potable water emerges from the low pressure side of the membrane, while salts, minerals, and other organics are discharged into a drain.