What Is The Best Water Filtration System?

Only 0.5% of the earth’s fresh water is available for industrial, commercial, and domestic use. With the remaining 2.5% proving impossible or extremely expensive to extract, the only viable remedy to freshwater scarcity lies in water filtration. Water filtration systems have played a significant role in remedying the global freshwater shortage given that the number of people without access to fresh potable water decreased from 1.1 billion in 2000 to 785 million as of 2017.

However, the present statistics are alarming and water scarcity is still considered a global pandemic. Water filtration is not only a cure for water shortage; it is a valuable weapon in the fight against water-borne diseases. Globally, the mortality rate of children under 5years as a result of waterborne illnesses like diarrhea is estimated to be over 800 per day.

Attempts to increase freshwater supply have seen most households dig wells but unbeknownst to most is that groundwater harbors numerous pollutants. To generate fresh product water from well water, water filtration systems are mandated.

With advanced water filtration systems like reverse osmosis systems and ultrafiltration units, the microorganisms, harmful chemicals, and dissolved solids present in water are lessened to acceptable levels. Consequently, millions of people gain unlimited access to clean, fresh water, and hygiene-related illnesses are mitigated.

What is a Water Filtration System?

A water filtration system is a water treatment unit deployed to alienate undesired contaminants from feed water. Water filtration systems are typically tasked with improving the quality of water available for personal, industrial, and commercial applications. The utilization of water filtration dates back to ancient Greek and Egyptian civilizations whereby they would evaporate raw water by heating it and ultimately collecting the condensed liquid as fresh uncontaminated water.

To modern civilizations, this is a simple distillation concept.  Contemporary water filtration systems and processes are incredibly improved versions of the ancient filtration technology with impressive impurity rejection rates. Presently, there are over 10 water filtration processes with reverse osmosis, distillation, ion exchange, activated carbon, deionization, and water softening are the most utilized.

Figure 1 Water filtration systems.

Types of Water Filtration Systems.

Innovation has given birth to a broad array of water filtration systems with varying capabilities thereby diversifying water filtration. The existing filtration systems have made water treatment cheaper and more reliable given that some have an impurity rejection rate averaging 90-99%. The primary concept used to classify water filtration systems is the process exploited to filter out the pollutants. Below, we briefly expound on the varying water filtration systems available in the current market.

Distillation systems.

Distillation systems are simply mimicry of the accustomed rain formation process. Distillation is one of the oldest water filtration processes and it is principally founded on evaporation. Feedwater is heated to the point of evaporation, the resulting vapor is condensed, and ultimately fresh water is collected in a separate container. Distillation systems are further classified into:

  • Vapor compression systems.
  • Multi-effect distillation systems.
  • Multi-stage flash distillation systems.

Vapor compression systems.

Vapor compression units are chiefly categorized as either thermal or mechanical vapor compressors. Mechanical vapor compression plants are primarily utilized by power generation plants, refineries, and process industries to provide unlimited product water. NEWater manufactures vapor compression systems capable of reusing the waste vapor to generate sufficient energy to power the distillation process. This results in energy conservation and ultimately low maintenance expenses.

Thermal vapor compression systems on the other hand rely on steam compressors powered by thermal energy to initiate evaporation. Thermal vapor compressors are typically small-sized (often 3000 m3/day) hence, they are primarily used in homes, resorts, and construction sites.

Figure 2 Vapor compression system.

Multi-effect distillation plants.

Multi-effect evaporation systems are water distillation plants that eradicate contaminants from raw water by evaporating it and condensing it at different temperatures and pressure points. MED plants operate at temperatures lower than 70 degrees and filtration is carried out in numerous chambers commonly referred to as effects.

Multi-effect evaporators are typically perfect for large-scale application hence their popularity in large power plants and refineries. Comparatively, they are also more energy-efficient than multi-stage flash distillation plants and they generate high-grade potable water.

Figure 3 Large-scale multi-effect distillation system.

Multi-stage flash distillation systems.

Multi-stage flash distillation plants are the oldest large-scale distillation systems dating back to the 1950s. They typically filter water in multiple slots called stages, which often range from 15 to 25. MSF systems have a brine heater where the feed water is intensely heated prior to being passed through subsequent chambers (stages) at subsequently lower pressure levels.

They are easily constructed, operated and have a high salt rejection rate. The potable water generated by multi-stage flash distillation systems often has a TDS concentration of 2-10ppm and the accumulation of additional stages improves the potable water quality.

Membrane-based filtration systems.

Membrane technology is gradually replacing distillation systems thanks to its energy efficiency, diversity, and exemplary impurity rejection scores.  The commonly used membrane filtration systems are:

Reverse osmosis systems.

Reverse osmosis plants are the predominant membrane filtration systems currently in use across the globe. They rely on high-pressure and semi-permeable membranes to filter out dissolved solids from feed water. RO systems typically have high TDS tolerance levels of up to 45,000ppm. As such, they are suitable for diverse filtration applications, and their flexible capacity ranges accommodate various scales of use. Common reverse osmosis systems include:

  • Seawater RO desalination systems.
  • Brackish water reverses osmosis systems.
  • Wastewater reverse osmosis systems.
  • Skid-mounted and containerized reverse osmosis systems.
  • Industrial and commercial reverse osmosis systems.

Figure 4 Reverse osmosis system.

Nanofiltration Systems.

Nanofiltration systems are membrane-based filtration systems contingent upon perforated membranes and pressure to filter out divalent ions, COD, organics, and coloring dye. They are differentiated from reverse osmosis systems by their slightly larger membrane pores (0.001 compared to 0.0001 microns).

NF systems are mainly deployed in households to eradicate water hardness and provide high-quality purified water for industries.  Additionally, they are utilized as pretreatment units for advanced reverse osmosis systems.

Figure 5 Nanofiltration system.

How do Water Filtration Systems function?

The numerous water filtration systems discussed above, exploit varying filtration processes to alienate contaminants from raw water. Initially, former civilizations (ancient Greeks and Egyptians) primarily utilized evaporative distillation to treat raw water. Later civilizations have invented new filtration processes such as reverse osmosis and modified earlier processes to give rise to contemporary MED and MSF processes.

The varying filtration processes have distinct purification rates and necessitate different operating conditions. With a greater understanding of the processes, it will be easier for you to select the befitting filtration process for your project. Underneath, we concisely look at the dominant water filtration technologies currently in use.

Reverse osmosis.

Reverse osmosis functions thanks to the exertion of pressure on the feed water as it is forced through the RO semi-permeable membranes. RO systems have a pretreatment unit, which contains varying filters depending on the composition of the feed water and a chemical dosing system.

The filters filter out colloids, debris, microplastics, and other large constituents found in feed water thereby thwarting membrane clogging. The employment of chemical dosing helps regulate the pH of the raw water thereby mitigating scaling effects and corrosion of machinery. The perforated membranes with 0.0001 micron-sized pores filter out dissolved solids, microorganisms, and harmful chemicals thereby generating fresh potable water.

Lastly, there is a post-treatment phase, which is mainly optional and is determined by the desired potable water quality. For instance, drinking water may necessitate the addition of magnesium and calcium minerals given reverse osmosis membranes eradicate most of the minerals.

Figure 6 Reverse osmosis process.

Nanofiltration

Nanofiltration is a process revered by many thanks to its low energy consumption and ultimately low investment costs. Its working principle is largely similar to the reverse osmosis process given they both rely on pressure and semi-permeable membranes.

However, Nanofiltration is particularly productive in filtering out divalent ions hence its widespread application in chemical processing industries, food and beverages, households, textile and wastewater treatment.

Multi-effect distillation.

The process of multi-effect distillation is principled upon the use of heat (less than 70°C.) to evaporate feed water. The filtration process is enforced in varying effects, whereby the water in successive effects is heated at lower temperatures and pressure points. For efficiency in energy consumption, the steam from a former effect is utilized to heat the next vessel.

The process is repeated severally for higher filtration scores and ultimately, the vapor is condensed and reserved in separate jars as clean product water. The presence of more effects in a MED process results in higher impurity rejection rates.

Multi-stage flash distillation.

Figure 7 Multi-stage flash distillation process.

The foundation of multi-stage flash distillation is simply the application of heat to feed water, subsequent condensing of the generated vapor, and collection of filtered water in different containers. First, the raw water is intensely heated prior to being driven into the first stage where it is subjected to high pressure thereby prompting hasty evaporation (flashing). In the consequent stages, the pressure is lessened and the steam is condensed in the heat exchanger tubes. The process is repeated in numerous stages ranging from 15-25 stages.

Vapor compression.

The energy necessitated to initiate the vapor compression process is chiefly derived from mechanical compressors or steam jets. In mechanical vapor compression, a vacuum is created in the evaporator and the steam is subsequently condensed in a tube bundle.

In thermal vapor compression, a venture orifice generates vapor by mining it from the water vapor thereby forming a low atmospheric temperature. The steam jet ultimately compresses the vapor and condenses it resulting in the generation of freshwater.

Figure 8 Vapor compression process.

The Composition of Water Filtration Systems.

For a clearer understanding of your water filtration machine, it is fundamental that you first comprehend the components assembled to build it. Technically, water filtration machines are an assembly of various parts with each part serving different roles.

Water filtration systems are designed differently to offer maximum productivity when utilizing respective filtration processes. Underneath, we break down the most popular water filtration machines to aid you to understand your filtration system better.

Distillation machine parts.

Distillation machines are major; multi-effect distillation, multi-stage flash distillation, or vapor compression systems. Due to the high-energy requirements for distillation processes, these systems necessitate a power source. In mechanical vapor compression, the source can be a diesel generator or an electrical power line. Thermal vapor compressors on the other hand have an integrated solar system as a power source.

Multi-effect distillation machines have effects (airtight elements) where evaporation is carried out at varying pressure and temperature levels. On the flip side, multi-stage flash distillation systems have vessels (15-25 stages) whereby the water is converted into vapor. In addition, distillation plants have condensers, which are primarily responsible for turning the vapor into liquid water. Finally, the filtered water is collected and stored in tanks while the distillate is collected in different containers.

Reverse osmosis system parts.

Reverse osmosis machines are ordinarily equipped with a pretreatment unit depending on the composition of the imminent feed water. In complex systems, the pretreatment chamber may be composed of an entire Nanofiltration system or water softener unit. However, most reverse osmosis plants have a chemical dosing system and cartridge filters as the principal pretreatment components.

The cartridge filters are solely tasked with eradicating colloids, microplastics, and other debris capable of clogging the membranes. The chemical dosing system on the other hand is responsible for regulating the concentration of the raw water to avert machinery corrosion and scaling.

The semi-permeable membranes in reverse osmosis systems are its primary component. They contain extremely small-sized pores (0.0001 microns) which alienate dissolved solids, organic chemicals, metals, and undesired minerals from feed water. NEWater uses first-rate RO membranes with a minimum lifespan of three years. Our membranes are made of three films.

  • Polyester support web.
  • Microporous polysulfone interlayer.
  • Ultra-thick polyimide

Finally, RO systems have a post-treatment chamber, which facilitates the regulation of permeate pH and polishing of the potable water using processes like ultraviolet radiation. Additionally, reverse osmosis plants consist of a high-pressure pump, a membrane cleaning system, and a skid although the latter is optional.

Figure 10 Reverse osmosis membrane.

Attributes to Look for When Procuring a Water Filtration System.

One of the internet’s most frequently asked questions on water treatment solutions revolves around the traits of a good water filtration plant. Freshwater scarcity is driving people’s interest in water filtration machines and processes.

Moreover, innovation has presented prospective buyers with a pool full of filtration equipment and a misinformed decision could potentially lead to a failed project.  This section expounds on numerous attributes of high-quality water filtration plants in an attempt to aid buyers to make the right purchases.

Figure 11 RO filtration machine.

Energy-efficiency.

The majority of effective water filtration processes and machinery necessitate varying amounts of energy to function. Certain systems have power consumption as the primary operating expense accounting for over 50% of their cumulative working expenditures. Recent developments especially in membrane filtration systems have massively enhanced the reputation of RO systems as a cost-efficient water treatment technology.

The journey towards cost-efficient reverse osmosis systems has been long but very fruitful. Currently, RO plants consume approximately 3 to 6 kWh/m3 while a few years ago the average energy consumption was 16 kWh/m3. Multi-stage flash distillation averages 13 to 26 kWh/m3 while multi-effect distillation averages 6 to 11 kWh/m3.

Due to the comparatively high-energy consumption rate of MSF and MED water treatment, they are largely applied in power plants and refineries. Thermal vapor compression is relatively less power-intensive hence it is suitable for use in households, resorts, small and medium businesses, hospitals, and construction sites.

Ample capacity and production rate.

The quantity of quality water your imminent water filtration system can generate in a day is extremely important. The number of filtered water gallons a system produces in a day depicts its daily capacity range and production rate. Manufacturers have been very creative in tailoring capacities for specific applications.

Presently, you can procure a water filtration system perfect for personal use due to its sizable capacity. Similarly, you can invest in an industrial water filtration plant with a maximum capacity of over 600,000 GPD based on your project’s scope. Excellent manufacturers such as NEWater personalize capacities and flow rates upon order placement.

Excellent filtration rates.

How much of the contaminants present in your feed water can the water filtration system eradicate? Water filtration units have varying impurity rejection rates and your selection should chiefly be based on the system’s ability to meet your potable water projections. Water softeners are particularly ideal for ejecting hardness minerals from raw water (over 99% effectiveness score) but their dissolved solids removal rate is abysmal.

Reverse osmosis systems are perfect water filtration solutions for feed water harboring enormous concentrations of salts. They are effective in lowering TDS concentrations and can handle TDS levels of over 35,000ppm, which are primarily synonymous with seawater. RO units eradicate up to 99.7% of dissolved solids although the impurity rejection rate depends on the membrane’s health.

Sufficient returns on investment.

Figure 12 Skid-mounted water filtration plant.

The goal of every water filtration system user is to reap the maximum returns of the system within the shortest period possible. A good water filtration plant guarantees returns by being inexpensive to operate and maintain. Manufacturers price water filtration equipment distinctively and often the pricing strategies employed revolve around the system’s design flow rate and capacity.

Conventionally larger systems will command higher prices to account for the higher capacities range and flow rates. The operational costs of a good water filtration plant should not exceed the value of the product generated. Determinants of the operational cost include:

●Power consumption.
●Labor.
●Installation.
●Asset depreciation value.
●Consumables, repairs, and replacements.

The above-mentioned dynamics are subject to change hence the overall cost of different water filtration systems varies incredibly. For instance, the cost of operating a multi-stage flash distillation system in the USA is approximately $3.79 per 1000 gallons while reverse osmosis systems cost $0.66 per m3. This is after considering the previously mentioned dynamics.

The Benefits of Using Water Filtration Systems from NEWater.

The presence of unscrupulous water filtration systems manufacturers calls for serious vetting prior to placing orders. Essential traits to look for in a credible and trustworthy manufacturer include immense experience, a broad reach, high-quality products, and certifications. Thankfully, NEWater ticks all boxes when it comes to assessing the qualities of manufacturers/suppliers.

For 2 decades, we have refined our craft, broadened our reach to over 200 countries, and massively grown our list of water treatment solutions. Underneath, we show why you should shop for your water filtration system from China’s leading provider of water treatment solutions.

Personalized solutions.

Our production team is composed of highly proficient engineers and designers who manufacture customized filtration solutions for our customers. As you place your order, you will be asked to specify your preferred power options (220-380-415V/50Hz/60Hz), the composition of your feed water, your desired product water quality, and your projected flow rate.

NEWater’s customized water filtration systems include containerized RO systems, skid-mounted ion-exchangers, and Nanofiltration systems. For an in-depth understanding or technical consultations kindly visit https://www.newater.com/.

Figure 13 Customized water filtration plant.

Assured quality.

NEWater boasts of numerous certifications including ISO 9001, European CE certification, and a level 3 qualification for professional environmental protection engineering. The entire production of RO, NF, ion exchange, and water softener systems is solely done in-house for quality control.

Most of our equipment is made from stainless steel to mitigate fouling resulting from corrosion or scaling. Our RO and NF membranes are top-notch averaging 3-5 years of use depending on the frequency and scale of use. Overall, our RO water filtration plants have a minimum life expectancy of 15 years stretching beyond 20 years under proper maintenance.

Market’s best prices.

Enjoy low prices and flexible payment terms by procuring your water filtration system from NEWater. By utilizing cost-efficient technology and designs, we provide high-quality filtration equipment guaranteeing users low maintenance expenses.  In addition, the systems and other related accessories are available to our local and international customers.

The Ultimate customer experience.

Purchasing your personal, industrial, or commercial water filtration system from NEWater automatically entitles you to numerous post-sale services. Prior to processing your order, we offer free feed water testing and analysis services. After you have purchased your system, NEWater provides the following services:

  • Delivery to your selected location.
  • On-site installation.
  • 12 months warranty protection.
  • Lifetime repair services.
  • Round-the-clock customer support.

NEWater is not your ordinary water filtration systems manufacturer, we go the extra mile of ensuring your systems exceed the standard quality threshold and prioritize your satisfaction.

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