Medium pressure ultraviolet (UV) water disinfection systems from Aquionics’ British sister company are helping a number of bottled water producers in England keep their product free from microbial contamination.
The first of these is the Silver Spring Mineral Water Company in Kent, which supplies spring water and own-brand soft drinks to the major British supermarkets.
“We have a very pure source of spring water,” commented Steve Clegg of Silver Spring’s engineering team, “but we feel a ‘take no chances’ approach to water purity is best, and medium pressure UV provides us with that extra reassurance,”. This was confirmed by quality assurance manager Sue Hickling, who said, “UV gives us a high level of confidence to ensure consumer protection and satisfaction.”
Seven UV units are now installed at Silver Spring, the oldest of which has been in use for over ten years. “We use UV on all our bottling lines and also for our municipal water supply,” added company trainer Jason Crockford.
Another company benefiting from UV disinfection is Angel Springs Limited situated in the picturesque Chiltern Hills outside London. The company, which bottles natural spring water for use in water coolers, recently replaced its ozone water disinfection unit with medium pressure UV following concerns about disinfection byproducts being formed as a result of ozone treatment.
“We were put off ozone by the potential for bromate formation as part of the ozonation process,” said Angel Spring’s Andrew Glaister. Bromide ions occur naturally in many spring waters and are completely harmless. If their levels are high, however, ozone can facilitate their conversion into bromate, a suspected carcinogen.
“Even though our bromide ion levels are not particularly high, we decided to go for the safer option and use medium pressure UV instead,” Mr Glaister continued. “UV has no downsides, only upsides, and since its installation we have been happy with its performance.”
Medium pressure UV is highly effective at destroying all water-borne microorganisms, including bacteria, yeasts, molds and their spores. It does not affect the pH or chemical composition of the water, ensuring flavor is not affected. Each UV system consists of a stainless steel treatment chamber containing one or more UV-emitting tubes surrounded by a protective quartz sleeve. Water passes through the chamber and the UV kills any microorganisms present by destroying their DNA.
All Aquionics medium pressure UV disinfection systems are easy to install, with minimum disruption to the plant. They need very little maintenance, the only requirement being replacement of the UV lamps every 12 months, depending on use. This is a simple operation that takes only a few minutes and can be carried out by general maintenance staff. They also utilize automated wiping systems, which keep the quartz sleeves surrounding the UV lamps clean. The benefits of automated wiping are that no chemicals are needed for cleaning and wiping takes place automatically during normal operation.
Aquionics, a Halma Group Company, is a market leader in the manufacture, application and development of UV technology for progressive, non-chemical disinfection and microbiological control. The company’s systems are used in a wide variety of applications worldwide, including water and wastewater treatment, pharmaceutical manufacture, food and beverage production, microelectronics and swimming pool disinfection.