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The Birth of Water Treatment

Author: Time: 07/08/2016 Read: 949

The first documented attempts to treat drinking water were recorded in ancient Greek and Sanskrit writings that date back to 2000 B.C.

By the early 1900s, water treatment experimentation had turned from the prevention of waterborne diseases to the creation of softer water. It had been observed that certain naturally occurring zeolites had properties that include the ability to perform ion exchange on its surface. Using this material, ion exchange treatment systems, which use sodium ions to replace hard water minerals in water, were first introduced into the water treatment market in 1903.

Hard water is water that has a high concentration of dissolved “nuisance” minerals, especially calcium, but also including magnesium, silica, iron and manganese. In general any water that has more then 3 grains of hardness in the water is considered hard water. According to the Water Quality Association (WQA), trade association representing the interests of the manufacturers of ion exchange water softeners and as well as other water treatment systems, soft water should be defined as water containing less than one grain per gallon or 17.1 mg/l of said “nuisance minerals”.