How Does Ozone Water Purification Work?

Ozone water purification is the most effective FDA approved water purification method for eradicating toxins that are found in water. Ozone, also known as O3, is a highly powerful oxidant that inactivates pesticides, fungus, organic materials, contaminates and viruses much more potently than chlorine. Ozone water purification accounts for the majority of purified water in the world; it’s currently the most popular water purification method used.

The Advantages of Ozone Water Purification

Ozone is an excellent disinfectant with the superior ability to kill viruses and biological contaminants found in water. It is also a very powerful oxidant that can oxidize metals in water such as manganese, iron and sulfur into insoluble particles, aiding in their filtration and removal from water. Oxidization by ozone in water purification also aids in removing taste and odor problems from water much more efficiently than chlorine, and ozone itself doesn’t produce any odor or taste. Due to the fact that ozone consists of oxygen, it reverts back to pure oxygen and disappears without a trace after it’s been used. Not only does ozone remove microorganisms from water, it also halts the accumulation of deposits in your pipes and water system which greatly improves the quality of your water. Another very important benefit of water purification using ozone is that no chemicals are added to the water. Ozone is a naturally occurring substance and when utilized for water purification purposes it immediately degrades back to oxygen leaving no trace.

How Does Ozone Water Purification Kill Bacteria and Germs

Ozone is composed of three Oxygen atoms. One of the atoms is connected to the others weakly and will transfer itself to other substances such as viruses and bacteria, causing them to oxidize by binding itself onto them.

How Ozone Water Purification Works

Ozone water purification requires something called an ozone generator. The ozone generator produces ozone much in the same way as the sun does in the upper atmosphere. High intensity ultraviolet lamps inside the ozone generator simulate the ozone producing ultraviolet rays of the sun and when compressed air is passed through the ultraviolet chamber of the ozone generator, some of the oxygen is converted to ozone. Ozone can also be created through chemical and electrolytic reactions.

The ozone that has been produced is then passed into a diffuser which creates bubbles and saturates them with ozone. These ozone saturated bubbles are then mixed with water in a water purification tank causing the weaker Oxygen molecule in the ozone to separate and bind itself to any organic molecules existing in the water. When this oxygen molecule attaches itself to organic matter oxidization takes place and the substance is turned into something else resulting in purified, clean drinking water. Water purified by ozone is now free of protozoa, fungi, germs and bacteria and is safe for human consumption. Ozone water purification accounts for more than ninety percent of the world’s purified water and most bottled waters are treated by ozone. There is a new trend in which some pool companies have begun to use ozone water purification instead of traditionally used chlorine due to the fact that it has less undesirable side effects.

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Ozone Water Treatment Disadvantages

Often wastewater and sewage contain a bewildering array of germs and carbon-based or organic chemicals and pollutants. Removing germs and organic compounds is a critical part of wastewater treatment, and ozone is one of the chemicals often employed to do the job. While it’s more effective than chlorine at destroying germs, it does have some important disadvantages.

Solubility and Activity
If the dose of ozone is too low, some of the germs and especially those that can form cysts may survive. Consequently, higher ozone concentrations are beneficial. These are difficult to maintain, however, because ozone is 12 times less soluble in water than chlorine, so the maximum disinfectant concentrations you can reach are much lower when you use ozone. Moreover, ozone breaks down very rapidly, and the higher the temperature or the pH, the more rapidly it decays. If the water is rich in organic compounds or suspended solids, a lot of the ozone may be consumed through reactions with these other contaminants, leaving an insufficient amount available to destroy germs. That’s why ozone is not an economical option for wastewater with very high amounts of suspended solids or total organic compounds.

Ozone’s reactivity is what makes it such a great disinfectant. That same strength, however, comes with some accompanying disadvantages. Ozone can react with many metals, including those used to line wastewater treatment containers, so operators must use corrosion-resistant materials like stainless steel, which makes plant construction more expensive. Moreover, ozone’s reactivity makes it a toxic chemical, so operators must design plants in such a way that workers don’t come into contact with ozone gas escaping from the water. This too increases the expense of ozone wastewater treatment.

Ozone is more challenging to produce and deliver than chlorine. Typically, plant operators generate ozone by running an electric current through air passing between two electrodes, a technique called corona discharge. About 85 percent of the energy input to a corona discharge system is wasted in the form of heat. This method is extremely energy-intensive and the equipment required is more complicated than chlorination systems, meaning that ozone generation is typically more expensive than the alternatives.

Residuals and Byproducts
When ozone reacts with organic compounds, it creates a variety of byproducts. If the water contains bromide ions, ozone treatment can form brominated compounds like the bromate ion, which is a possible human carcinogen. Consequently, operators must either control the pH or avoid use of ozone if the water is rich in bromide salts. Finally, ozone is unlike chlorine in that there is no residual or remaining disinfectant once the process is over; any ozone that doesn’t react with contaminants breaks down completely. This makes it more difficult for plant operators to keep tabs on how well disinfection is working since there is no residual level of ozone in the water that they can monitor.

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Founded in Cape Town, January 2002, Wassertec has become the leader in ozone and ozone generation in Southern Africa.

From day one, our vision has been to design and manufacture the highest quality ozone generation systems primarily for the wine and bottled water industries. We believe that by taking care of the quality, the rest will take care of itself.
By collaborating with highly competent electrical engineers and industrial software developers, we have, over the years, created what we believe to be the best ozone systems currently available in their class.
From small beginnings we have grown the company and product line to become the leading manufacturer of ozone equipment in South Africa. Our specialised Bright Blue systems set the standard for ozone in the bottling industry.

Ozone Generation Specialists

With installations in nine African countries and clients such as Coca Cola, SAB and Distell, Wassertec are perfectly positioned to become your partners in ozone.

We not only design and manufacture our Ozone generation systems to the highest quality and safety standards, but we also stock all components at our Cape Town offices – ensuring rapid replacement of spares and minimal downtime.

If you are looking for high quality Ozone Generators, with backup and service to match, you’re in the right place. Welcome to Wassertec.