Water treatment is essential to ensuring people have access to clean water and for maintaining sanitary conditions. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 1 billion people do not have safe drinking water, and more than 2.6 billion do not have adequate sanitation. The result is a staggering 1.7 million deaths per year due to unsafe water, inadequate hygiene, and waterborne illness. These statistics are driving the search for better water treatment solutions.

Filtration is one of the primary methods used to treat water. Since clean water is critical to human well-being, municipal water treatment facilities generally utilize several techniques and technologies, which are often redundant, to ensure safe drinking water.

What Is the Role of Filtration in the Water Treatment Industry?

The filtration processes commonly used in water treatment operations include: 

  • Particle filtration
  • Microfiltration (MF)
  • Ultrafiltration (UF)
  • Nanofiltration (NF)
  • Reverse osmosis (RO)

Municipal facilities can use all of the above. 

  • For particle filtration, they utilize settlement ponds.
  • For microfiltration, they employ sand, gravel, and/or carbon beds. 
  • For ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis, they utilize membrane bioreactors (MBR) for sludge concentration. 

Which Current Water Treatment Trends Are Affecting Filtration Solutions?

Filtration is a vital part of the water treatment process. Throughout the years, its use has evolved with industry trends. Current trends that have had an impact on filtration systems include: 

  • Complex supply chains. Water treatment facilities are civil works projects planned over decades and designed to last centuries. Many parties are involved in making project decisions, including consultants, civic leaders, water treatment personnel, users, and neighbors, which extends the planning and execution phases. The experts at H&V understand these complex evaluation cycles and develop robust, long-term solutions.
  • Legislation and regulations. Regulations and legislation regarding water safety and security frequently change and affect how water treatment facilities support the water supply chain.
  • Water reuse. Water reuse is growing in importance within the industrial and municipal sectors. As manufacturers learn to improve sludge concentration and water filtration, more water can be reused on-site and less water can be released into treatment systems.
  • Regional needs. Water needs vary by region due to local conditions. Weather, water, population, and access to power influence how different regions approach water treatment.
  • Weather impact. New building codes call for improved run-off control. Combined sewer overflows (CSOs) occur when flooding releases untreated sewage. This situation impacts 860 communities (about 40 million people) in the US alone. Changes in weather patterns can overwhelm existing water treatment systems.
  • Emerging contaminants. The US Environmental Protection Agency released its fifth Drinking Water Candidate Contaminant List (CCL5), which outlines 81 risks to drinking water, including 12 microbes and 66 chemicals. 
  • Specialized point-of-use (POU) and point-of-entry (POE). Hospital systems are increasingly using POU and POE systems to ensure clean water for patients with weakened immune systems. Residential (e.g., households) and commercial (e.g., restaurants and sporting arenas) facilities are also adopting filtration systems at an increasing rate to ensure an additional layer of water safety.
  • Direct-to-potable-reuse (DPR). DPR extends the concept of water reuse to water treatment and potable water. Many systems now have cleaner water leaving their system than are used in drinking water. Instead of discharging treated water to a reservoir, they redirect it for drinking reuse. 

Why Choose H&V’s Water Treatment Filter Media Solutions?

At Hollingsworth & Vose, we offer a comprehensive selection of advanced filtration solutions. Our products used for water treatment include: 

  • Wetlaid cellulose. Our wetlaid nonwoven cellulose is used for filtration operations in many industrial and water treatment applications. It is available in grades from 1 to 50 micron. The material is used in cartridge filters for POU, POE, and microfiltration steps in water treatment.
  • Trupor®. Our sub-micron family of products is available in many polymers and several traditional microfiltration grades (0.65 micron, 0.45 micron, and 0.20 micron). These materials enable high-speed microfiltration upstream of sensitive UF, RO, and NF steps.
  • Meltblown filter media. Our meltblown liquid filtration products are available in polypropylene (PP), polyester (PBT), and nylon and in grades ranging from 0.80 micron to 30 micron. They are used in cartridge filters for POU, POE, and microfiltration steps in water treatment.
  • Thin-film composites. Many UF, RO, and NF membranes are produced with the support of a porous material as a backer; the result is a thin-film composite with superior performance. Our wetlaids, meltblowns, and Trupor® are suitable for these applications.
  • Air filter media. Many liquid filtration systems run in environments that require air filtration. For example, our gas-phase activated carbon media is often used to provide superior odor control for water treatment facilities.

H&V filtration technologies have been developed for a broad array of industries and applications. Our filtration experts can help to specify a solution that meets your needs. While there are many standard products available, some process requirements call for a custom filter media. At H&V, we develop leading filtration solutions that are sustainable and ethically produced. To learn more about our filtration products or get started on your solution, contact us today.

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