By Joe Bongiovanni
Reverse Osmosis Water Systems have been becoming more and more commercially viable each year and are used by over 100 countries in the world. These systems vary greatly in their size and purpose. Residential units range from 2x2x1 for personal use under the sink to waterworks systems the size of a football fields for cities and villages like Geneva, IL. Business applications of Reverse Osmosis are not limited to drinking water and include: Photography, Dialysis, Car Wash Water Reuse, Biomedical Applications, Pharmaceutical Production, Cosmetics, Livestock Food, Gardening, Metal Plating, Semiconductors, and Maple Syrup. Technological improvements of existing designs continually increase capabilities while improving efficiency.
As great as that all sounds, what does it mean? What is Reverse Osmosis? It is not all that complicated and begins with an old science term called osmosis. According to the Merriam-Webster’s definition, “Osmosis is the movement of a solvent (as water) through a semipermeable membrane (as of a living cell) into a solution of higher solute concentration that tends to equalize the concentrations of solute on the two sides of the membrane.”
Well how do RO Systems work today? Reverse Osmosis uses 50 to 60 bars of pressure to counteract the natural flow of osmosis. The semipermeable membrane allows the tiny water molecules to pass through but larger contaminants are too big and are left behind. This is also a form of ion exclusion. RO Systems normally will require some sort of sediment pre-filter to prevent the membrane from getting clogged by suspended materials. A carbon pre-filter is also included to prevent chlorine from damaging the membrane.