Video Spotlight: Is Ultrafiltration Right for My Process?

Upgrading your company’s industrial water treatment processes will help your operation meet zero manifesting goals and adhere to federal, state, and local wastewater compliance requirements. It can also result in cost-savings, production efficiencies, and better finished products. Ultrafiltration is one of many options available for treating industrial water. But how do you know if it’s right for your process? Here are answers to some of the most common questions regarding ultrafiltration.

What is ultrafiltration and how does it work?
Ultrafiltration utilizes cross-flow filtration to remove emulsified oils and suspended solids from soluble oils and alkaline wash waters. The fluid flows parallel to a semi-permeable membrane, which retains the emulsified oils and the suspended solids, while the water and dissolved solids pass through the membrane. There are several membrane configurations available, which can help your company accommodate unique operational considerations such as floor space and energy consumption.

The quality of the effluent that ultrafiltration produces is very consistent. This dependability reduces the amount of testing required to validate the quality of the water. It also makes it suitable for discharging to sewer or for reuse, which lowers wastewater treatment costs and water expenses. Ultrafiltration can also help keep associated energy costs low because it doesn’t require heat.

What are some application examples for ultrafiltration?
Ultrafiltration is used to clarify process water, industrial wastewater, or metalworking coolant. Ultrafiltration’s ability to reduce oily water volumes helps operations significantly reduce their chemical additive expenses. Some of the most common sources of oily wastewater include:

  • Mop/floor scrubber water
  • Phosphate cleaner baths
  • Dye penetrant rinse waters
  • Parts washer effluent
  • Pressure washer wastewater
  • Compressor condensate (non-synthetic)
  • Bulk transportation cleaning water
  • Spent rolling and drawing compounds
  • Bilge water and shipyard wastewater
  • Vibratory finishing and deburring wastewater
  • Spent metalworking coolants
  • Aqueous degreasing baths
  • Vehicle exterior wash water

How do I know if ultrafiltration is right for my operation?
There are many water treatment options available besides ultrafiltration, including reverse osmosis, vacuum evaporation and distillation, pH adjustment, ozone generation, ultraviolet treatment, and oil-water separation. A laboratory analysis of your industrial water will reveal what substances the water contains. That information will largely determine what capabilities are needed to achieve your end goal. In some instances pre-treatment and post-treatment capabilities may be needed to optimize your water treatment process. Industrial wastewater technical experts will help guide you through the analysis and selection process to ensure you are investing in the equipment that will best serve your process.

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