The Generation of Ozone for Water Purification in Third World Countries

The Generation of Ozone for Water Purification in Third World Countries

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The Generation of Ozone for Water Purification in Third World Countries

Ozone is the O3 molecule formed through the combination of molecular and
atomic oxygen. It can be used to remove iron, pesticides, detergents, color, ammonia and
other nitrogen derivatives from water. Ozonation is a process used worldwide to render
water potable. Although using ozone for disinfection can be expensive and inconvenient,
it has, among others, the advantages of being widely effective, of adding oxygen to the
water, and of being sufficient, even in low concentrations (Evans 140).
The ozone used in ozonation can be produced through a variety of methods, the
most common of which include the application of ultraviolet light to pure or non-pure
oxygen; the silent electric discharge process, in which oxygen passes through a field of
high voltage alternating current; and the electrochemical process that occurs when current
is passed through water, causing the formation of hydrogen, oxygen, and ozone. (Evans
127).
Each of these methods for ozone production has drawbacks. The ultraviolet
irradiation technique includes all of the dangers normally associated with exposure to
ultraviolet light, and requires expensive equipment. The silent electric discharge process
generates so much heat that a method of controlling the temperature is necessary. Also,
this process is most efficient with clean, cool, dry air; the available air might not conform
to these specifications, requiring further action. The electrochemical process produces
tiny quantities of ozone in comparison to molecular oxygen, and is therefore unreliable.
(The electrochemical process can also be applied using sulfuric or perchloric acid, but
this method is obviously unsuitab...


... middle of paper ...


... acquire. Although the solution to the problem of providing drinkable water in remote
and disadvantaged locations is not clear cut, the use of ozone as a disinfectant is a
promising and intriguing technique.
Works Cited
Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Water. Alternative Disinfectants and
Oxidants Guidance Manual. United States, 1999.
Evans, Frances. Ozone in Water and Wastewater Treatment. Ann Arbor: Science
Publishers, 1972.
“Make some ozone.” BigClive.Com. 11 Dec. 2006

Rice, Rip G., and Aharan Netzer. Handbook of Ozone Technology and Applications:
Volume II: Ozone for Drinking Water Treatment. Boston: Butterworth
Publishers, 1984.
Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). June 2004. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 11
Dec. 2006

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