You’ve probably heard of the reverse osmosis (RO) process, and most likely have drunk water, taken medicine, or eaten food whose production includes reverse osmosis. Even though you have most likely heard of it, you may have also wondered “what is reverse osmosis?”
Although the term can seem daunting, at its core, reverse osmosis is a process for filtering substances. Usually, those substances are water, but they can be other liquids or even gasses.
Gaining a better understanding of what reverse osmosis is and how it works can help you decide on the appropriate water treatment option for your needs. At the end of this, you might find yourself on the hunt for a reverse osmosis filtration system.
To understand how reverse osmosis works, you must first get a better idea of what the process of osmosis is. Osmosis is a natural process that occurs in our bodies and in the world around us. It is how your cells take in nutrients and water, and how plants receive nutrients and moisture from the soil they are planted in.
Osmosis occurs when a solvent moves across a semipermeable membrane from a solution with a low concentration of solutes to a solution with a high concentration of solutes.
Let’s break down what these terms mean:
The term osmotic pressure is used to describe this tendency for a fluid to move across a membrane to a solution that has a higher concentration of solutes.
Reverse osmosis doesn’t occur naturally. Instead, reverse osmosis requires the application of force, in the form of hydrostatic pressure, to a solution with a high concentration of solutes. This solution is then forced through a specially designed membrane that blocks molecules larger than water. The result on the other side is a solution with a low concentration of solutes.
The practical application for reverse osmosis systems is to reduce the number of dissolved solids, or solutes in a solution.
Most often the solution used in a reverse osmosis system is water. Water is forced through a membrane that has pores large enough for water molecules to pass through, but too small for the minerals, metals, bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants that water often contains. This helps answer the question, “what is reverse osmosis water?”.
Reverse osmosis was first invented in 1748 by a French physicist and clergyman, but it spent nearly 200 years confined to laboratories. It wasn’t until the University of California Los Angeles opened the first desalination plant in 1950 that reverse osmosis entered the public sphere.
Here are some of the most common uses of reverse osmosis:
There are many other applications that reverse osmosis is used for, not the least of which is for removing contaminants from residential potable water. Residential RO systems are a cost-effective and highly efficient alternative to purchasing bottled water or utilizing a bottled water delivery service.
Here are some of the core advantages of using RO systems in a residential setting:
If you have ever asked, “what is RO water?”, the short answer is water that contains very little contaminants. With a residential reverse osmosis system, filtered water is delivered straight from the tap water source at your kitchen sink. The benefits of reverse osmosis water are right at your fingertips.
Reverse osmosis is an incredibly important process in today’s world. It is used to manufacture the medicine we use, the food we eat, and most importantly to filter the water we drink.
Reverse osmosis is a process that can remove impurities and unwanted contaminants. In a reverse osmosis system, water is forced through a specially designed membrane that allows water molecules through but doesn’t allow other contaminants. The result is potable water without many of the carbonates, metals, and other substances that it normally carries.
To learn more about reverse osmosis systems for residential drinking water, please contact Rayne Water today. We have locations in both Arizona and California! Everything from reverse osmosis systems in Phoenix to water softeners in San Diego! Check out the location nearest you!