WHAT IS REVERSE OSMOSIS?

Puretech reverse osmosis plant

What is Reverse Osmosis?

A Brief Summary

Reverse Osmosis (RO) is a water purification technology that uses semipermeable membranes to remove ionsmolecules and particles from water.

 

Technical Overview

Applied pressure is used to overcome osmotic pressure, a colligative property, that is driven by chemical potential differences of the solvent, a thermodynamic parameter.

Reverse Osmosis removes dissolved and suspended solids from water, including bacteria. It is used in both industrial processes and the purification of potable water.

The solute is retained on the pressurized side of the membrane and the pure solvent can pass through. The membrane prevents large molecules or ions through the pores. However, the membrane allows smaller components of the solution (such as solvent molecules) to pass freely.

In the normal osmosis process, the solvent naturally moves from an area of low solute concentration (high water potential), through a membrane, to an area of high solute concentration (low water potential).

The driving force for the movement of the solvent is the reduction in the free energy of the system. This occurs when the difference in solvent concentration on either side of a membrane is reduced. By doing this, we generate osmotic pressure due to the solvent moving into the more concentrated solution.

When we apply an external pressure to reverse the natural flow of pure solvent, it is known as, reverse osmosis.

Because reverse osmosis also involves diffusion it makes the process dependent on pressure, flow rate, and other conditions.

In conclusion, reverse osmosis is most known for its use in water purification systems. Because it aids in reducing the conductivity levels in the water and can provide a high grade of water purity.

Similarly, desalination is an artificial process which removes the salt and other effluent materials from the water molecules of seawater. Desalination utilises reverse osmosis technologies.

Find Out More

Puretech Water Systems (UK) Ltd specialise in water treatment and process filtration. We work across multiple sectors providing water processing solutions.

Interested in finding out more about the desalination services we provide?

Find more information here: https://puretechsystems.co.uk/desalination/

More Articles

  • All
  • Case Studies
  • News
  • Videos