Reverse osmosis is a complicated term and an even more complicated when trying to explain it scientifically. This article explains reverse osmosis in simple terms.
Sometimes science has a way of creating more misunderstanding than understanding by making the simplest processes seem complicated by obsuficating them with words we never use on a daily basis and rarely come across.
Take reverse osmosis for example. We see the word “osmosis” all the time (even when we aren’t reading Wikipedia just for fun). The words “reverse osmosis” are used in fancy marketing as a term recognised for quality drinking water, it’s on single-use disposable water bottles, drinking water fountains, and even some sugary beverages. But what does reverse osmosis mean? And is it good for me?
The purpose of this article is to answer that question and give you a little background in plain English.
What is Reverse Osmosis?
Even though the process of reverse osmosis is properly and scientifically described in a complicated tone, it’s a pretty simple process.
In order to filter water with reverse osmosis, water is pumped through a “semipermeable membrane”. The membrane itself is quite thin, however it will only allow water to pass through it, and it will hold back any inorganic solids.
Regular osmosis happens in our environment every day, naturally. Volcanic rock, sand, sediment, and other earth deposits naturally filter out rain water and desalinise ocean salt water further inland. Reverse osmosis was created to replicate this process to effectively speed it up and allow it to take up less space.
What Does Reverse Osmosis Filter Out of Drinking Water?
Instead of earth, sediment, rock, and other earthly deposits, reverse osmosis is typically facilitated first by a pre-filter, then a semi-permeable membrane which is made synthetically, and then a post filter.
Some inorganic solids a semi-permeable membrane can hold back include salt, heavy metals, arsenic, lead, cadmium, cyanide, along with harmful chemicals used in manufacturing that have permanently polluted our water table and other debris from brackish water.
A Note on Fracking and the Benefits of Reverse Osmosis for Drinking Water
If you are aware that there is fracking going on in your region, then an under counter reverse osmosis water filter is a must.
Fracking has been shown to be a cause for some real next level drinking water pollution, however it is controversial. Big companies have a lot to lose if they admit it, so the battle rages on in the courts.
A simple Google search for “fracking drinking water” will reveal (I’m not making this up): from the United States of America to Australia, rivers and drinking water sources have been proven to have seen pollution from fracking. It’s only a matter of time until the delays being infiltrated by those who profit will be squashed and the real truth will come out. There are even extreme cases in the United States of America where people uploaded videos to Youtube which contained real video of them lighting their flammable tap water on fire.
So, aside from reducing fracking pollutants (should there be any in your area), reverse osmosis can also remove other drinking water pollutants such as polio virus or other waste by-products from people and things, like blood cells, prescription drugs, and so on.
The world is a dirty place. Bottled water absolutely cannot be trusted for its unregulated nature and reports that it contains more bacteria than tap water –and although I still personally trust tap water in my region I still like knowing I have the added protection of an under-counter reverse osmosis system in my kitchen.
What do you think? We mentioned some controversial points in this post so there’s a lot of engaging points to discuss. Let us know what you think in the comments!
How Reverse Osmosis Water Filter Works and its Benefits
February 2, 2016 by · Leave a Comment