We may have heard this terminology 'Reverse Osmosis' a few times, but do you know what it means and the process that defines it? We have created a comprehensive guide on everything you need to know about the reverse osmosis water filtration process. Before we get started, let's understand the true meaning of Reverse Osmosis.
What is Reverse Osmosis?
Simply put, reverse osmosis is a water purification technique that eliminates contaminants from the water supply. For this process, water pressure is used to push the water molecules through the partially permeable membrane. On the supply side of the membrane, purified water is pushed through leaving behind concentrated contaminants on the concentrated side. Contaminants of impurities that are eliminated during the process may include salt, minerals, pollutants, metals, and even sediments.
A Little History
This is not a new purification technique, it has existed since 1748. The first attempt at the reverse osmosis process was through semipermeable membranes, back in 1748. In 1950, although the process was slow, it was used for the desalination of seawater at the University of California in Los Angeles. Early 21st century, we started seeing new polymers that were used for the production of more efficient membranes.
How Does it Work?
The reverse osmosis water filtration technique has three to ten stages of purification. The most common stages are pre-filtration, reverse osmosis, drainage, and storage. During the pre-filtration process, the system uses sediment pre-filter, and carbon pre-filter to suspend any impurities within the feed water. It removes particles as small as 5 microns and absorbs pollutants by soaking them within the pore structure.
Next during the reverse osmosis process itself, the feed water is pushed through a partially permeable RO membrane. It is made of a thin-film composite with tiny holes. During this stage, only purified water passes through eliminating microbial contaminants such as viruses, bacteria, cysts, amongst several others.
Finally, the post-filtration stage involves drainage and storage. The treated water is stored in a small tank until it is used, and the polishing filter removes any contaminants.
Most Common Contaminants Removed By Reverse Osmosis
Did you know that an RO system is capable of removing up to 99% of dissolved contaminants found in feed water? It's true. Some of the most common contaminants are salt, particles, colloids, organic bacteria, pyrogens, and pollutants.
What are the Uses of Reverse Osmosis?
Reverse osmosis has become an imperative part of our daily lives. Apart from the desalination of seawater, this process is now being used in both commercial and residential water filtration. Like we have stated, the process reduces any contaminants, purifying them and making the water suitable to drink. That's not all, reverse osmosis can also be used to purify ethanol or grain alcohol. As one of the most thorough methods to remove any impurities and pollutants from the water supply, the benefits of reverse osmosis don't end there. It can not only improve the taste, quality, and purity of the drinking water, but also eliminate fluoride, chlorine, and arsenic.
At Eco Water, we have championed the EcoWater reverse osmosis system to enhance the taste and quality of the water you drink. Interested in learning more about the process? Talk to our experts today.