The adoption of ultrafiltration (UF) water systems by UK industries is helping improve the quality of process water in a range of applications, as well as simplifying waste water management. What is the ultrafiltration process and how could your benefit from it? Let’s find out.
Understanding the Ultrafiltration Process and What It Can Help Achieve
A membrane filtration process, ultrafiltration is used to remove suspended solids, endotoxins, viruses, bacteria and more to produce fresh clean water with low silt density. One of the best things about this process is that it effectively removes insoluble components such as colloidal particles, precipitated solids and oils from a waste stream.
To remove contaminants, ultrafiltration uses extremely fine membranes. The type and size of contaminants removed are determined by the pore size in a UF membrane. Generally, ultra-filtration pore sizes range from 0.005 to 0.1 micron, which smaller than microfiltration membranes, but larger than nano-filtration and Reverse Osmosis membrane pore size (average 0.0001 micron). This allows ultrafiltration to maintain higher flow rates than reverse osmosis, while requiring a much lower operating pressure.
Today, many manufacturing businesses are using ultra-filtration water systems to maintain high levels of water purity, and avoid bacterial infection—which can lead to expensive downtime. A mechanical procedure, ultrafiltration minimises treatment waste and the need to use chemicals, while preserving the water’s mineral equilibrium.
The ‘ultra-filtered’ or recycled water can be used for many industrial processes including washing equipment, vehicles and hardstands, processing water for production lines in manufacturing industries, concrete mixing, construction activities and dust control.
Types of System Available
There are two types of Ultrafiltration (UF) systems available today: Hollow Fibre and Cross Flow. Let’s take a brief look at each type of UF water systems.
Hollow Fibre UF Water Systems
Today, Hollow Fibre ultrafiltration membrane technology is widely accepted and adopted as the industry standard for water treatment technology. Hollow Fibre ultrafiltration water systems remove pathogens from water by using physical barrier filtration. Efficient purification systems, HF ultrafiltration water systems require no chemicals and provide a secure barrier against large viruses, bacteria, dissoluble organic solids and other microorganisms. Even in cases where there is variation in the composition of the original water, HF ultrafiltration water systems supply a high level of filtrate quality.
Cross Flow UF Water Systems
Widely utilised in wastewater filtration, cross flow ultrafiltration water systems use a process in which feed water flows in a tangent manner across the surface of a membrane. Optimal flux performance and prolonged filter functionality is achieved when there is turbulence across this surface. Instead of introducing feed water directly onto the filter, cross flow UF water systems introduce it under pressure across the surface of the membrane. During filtration, materials smaller than the pore of cross flow UF membrane pass through the membrane, while large particles remain suspended in the retentive stream.
Looking for The Best UF Systems? Here’s What You Need to Do
UF systems are a great option for you if you want a direct flow system, with minimal waste water. Capable of running without electricity and at low water pressures, UF systems effectively reduce dissolved solids, lead, chlorine, chemicals and other contaminants without altering the PH of your water. They also allow you to retain valuable mineral compounds in the feed water that are removed by other filtration methods. To determine the best Ultra Filtration system for you and your needs and get a quote for them, simply call +44 (0)1993 892211 to get in touch with one of our representatives at Wychwood Water.
More information about Reverse Osmosis, Filtration, Deionisation and other water treatment systems can be found in our free Industrial Water Purification Guide. Click here to claim your copy.