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Many industries rely on highly purified water to produce consumer goods or to perform steps in a service process. These industries need powerful systems to remove suspended solids and dissolved contaminants from water supplies. A commercial reverse osmosis system is designed to provide ultra-pure water for industrial applications. In this guide, we will explore commercial reverse osmosis systems and how they are used to provide water for production processes.
What is a Commercial Reverse Osmosis System?
Reverse osmosis (RO) water systems utilize the power of osmosis to remove dissolved contaminants from water supplies. Osmosis is the natural cellular process by which water molecules with a lower concentration of minerals and suspended solids tend to migrate through cell walls toward water molecules with higher concentrations. These systems can be found in households across the country and may be used to purify both municipal water supplies and water pumped from private wells.
In an RO system, the natural process of osmosis is done in reverse. Water with high concentrations of dissolved elements is pumped through a semi-permeable membrane that traps and removes contaminants. The resulting water is purified, leaving contaminants behind to be discarded as wastewater. The membrane inside the RO chamber is able to trap a range of contaminants, including:
A commercial reverse osmosis system differs from a household RO system in two primary ways. First, the capacity of the system to produce pure water is higher; many commercial RO systems can produce thousands of gallons of purified water per day. Second, these systems are equipped with precision controls to ensure precise water production. Some commercial models are equipped with specialized mixing valves and monitoring equipment that allow a small percentage of total suspended solids (TDS) to pass through into the production water.
Most commercial RO systems are equipped with a pre-filter stage to remove sediments, silt, and other large contaminants from the water before it is processed in the RO chamber. This pre-filtering helps to protect the system and to make it more efficient, giving it the ability to produce ultra-pure water for many years.
What Industries Use Commercial Reverse Osmosis Systems?
Purified water is an essential component in a wide range of manufacturing, production, and industrial processes. Dissolved contaminants in water supplies can interfere with the precise production of pharmaceuticals, foods, and beverages. Industries that use commercial reverse osmosis systems to purify water before use include:
For certain industrial applications, particularly breweries, distilleries, and hydroponic-based agricultural operations, a certain amount of total suspended solids (TDS) is needed to build a water profile. The suspended solids add flavor and texture characteristics to the finished product, but the amount must be carefully controlled. Many commercial RO systems allow these solids to be precisely controlled by mixing unprocessed water with the RO water. The system controls this process with advanced monitoring and metering equipment.