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Making water
purer than pure.

Proven technologies in softening water and producing ultra-pure water for various industrial applications.

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A century-old technology
that’s as relevant as ever.

The ion exchange process is an ancient technique that remains very relevant today. By records, the exchange of cations as a phenomenon was first discovered more than a hundred years ago. Two English chemists, Thompson and Way, observed that certain soils had a greater ability than others to absorb ammonia from fertilizers – with complex silicates in the soil that performed an ion exchange function. They began to prepare such materials in the laboratory from solutions of sodium aluminate and sodium silicate. In 1906, Rober Gans used such materials for softening water and for treating sugar solutions. Since then, ion exchange technologies have evolved to become an essential part of various industrial applications worldwide.

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Ion exchange process.

Powerful. But complex.

Whenever an ion is removed out of an aqueous solution and is replaced by another ionic species, it is generally referred to as “ion exchange.” It involves a specific chemical process in which unwanted dissolved ions are exchanged for other ions with a similar charge. Ions are atoms or molecules containing a total number of electrons that are not equal to the total number of protons. There are two different groups of ions, cations, which are positively charged, and anions, which are negatively charged.

This attraction is used to remove dissolved ionic contaminants from water. The exchange process occurs between a solid (resin or a zeolite) and a liquid (water). In the process, the less desired compounds are swapped for those that are considered more desirable. These desirable ions are loaded onto the resin material. Choosing and using ion exchange resins is often a complex process.

Example of an IX process.

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IX – limitations.

In treating high concentration of ionised
contaminants & non-ionised content.

For IX technology to be effective and efficient, there must be a difference in affinity between the targeted ions to be removed and the ion in the resins used. The resins must have a higher affinity for the ions in the water vis-a-vis the ions in the resins. One great limitation of IX technology is when it is used to remove high concentration of exchange contaminants. In such cases, the service duration until the resins become exhausted may be exceptionally short, and result in frequent backwash and regeneration cycles, and high consumption of regenerant chemicals. Also, any contaminants in the water that are not ionised cannot be removed by IX processes. Other water technologies will be needed under such circumstances.

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Don’t take chances
on IX applications.

Engage a water specialist with
in-depth expertise & experiences.

With several types of resins available for water applications, more often than not, there is more than one technically effective solution that will meet all the system’s design specifications. Hence, in-depth experience and knowledge, both in the selection of the types of resins as well as process and system designs, are needed to meet the requirements of a project. While ion exchange technologies and processes are proven and mature for industrial applications, the requirements of high-level expertise and established experiences can prove to be a complex and challenging process for some water companies and their clients.

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