AbsoluteWhen referring to filters is used in reference to the micron rating of cartridge or disc filters, indicating that all particles larger than a specified size will be trapped within or on the filter and will not pass through
Activated CarbonGranulated activated carbon used to remove tastes, odor, chlorine, chloramines, and some organics from water
AnionNegatively-charged ion in a solution
BackwashReversal of a solution’s flow through a filtration system. Often used as a cleansing mechanism in sand and dual-media filters
Cartridge filterA filter device, usually disposable, filtering in the range of 0.1 micron to 100 microns, and usually 2 inches to 4 inches (51 to 102 mm) in diameter and 6 inches to 60 inches (152 to 1524 mm) in length
CationPositively-charged ion in a solution
Chemical Solution FeederA pump used to meter chemicals such as acid, chlorine or polyphosphate into a feedwater supply.
ChloramineA compound consisting of chlorine and ammonia gas which retains its bactericidal qualities for a longer time than does free chlorine
ChlorinationThe addition of small amounts of free chlorine, usually 0.2 to 2.0 ppm, to render water bacteriostatic in a water supply
ChlorineChemical used for its qualities as a bleaching, oxidizing or disinfecting agent in water purification
ConcentrateIn crossflow filtration, the portion of a feed stream which does not permeate the medium but retains and is increased in the amount of ions, organics, and suspended particles which are rejected by the medium
CondensateWater obtained through evaporation and subsequent condensation. Normally the water resulting from condensing plant steam originally generated in a boiler. Water condensed in a water still operation is usually called distillate
ConductivityThe property of a substance’s (in this case, water) ability to transmit electricity. The inverse of resistivity. Measured by a conductivity meter, and described in microSiemens/cm
Crossflow Membrane FiltrationA separation of the components of a fluid by semipermeable membranes through the application of pressure and parallel flow to the membrane surface. Includes the processes of reverse osmosis, ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and microfiltration
Deionization (DI)Process utilizing specially-manufactured ion exchange resins which remove ionized salts from water. Can theoretically remove 100% of salts. Deionization typically does not remove organics, virus or bacteria, except through “accidental” trapping in the resin and specially-made strong base anion resins which will remove gram-negative bacteria
DisinfectionThe process of killing pathogenic organisms in a water supply or distribution system by means of heat, chemicals, or UV light
Dissolved SolidsThe residual material remaining from a filtered source after evaporating the solution to a dry state
EndotoxinA heat-resistant pyrogen, specifically a lipopolysaccharide found in the cell walls of viable and nonviable bacteria
ExhaustionIn water softening or ion exchange, the point where the resin can no longer exchange additional ions of the type the process was designed for
Feed/feedwaterThe input solution to a treatment/purification system, including the raw water supply prior to any treatment
FiltrationThe process by which solid particles are separated from a liquid by passing the liquid through a permeable material. Also, the physical or mechanical process of separating insoluble particulate matter from a fluid, such as air or liquid, by passing the fluid through a filter medium that will not let the particulates through
FoulingIn crossflow filtration, the reduction of flux that is attributed to a buildup of solids on the surface of the membrane
gpdGallons per day
Grains Per Gallon (gpg)A unit of concentration equal to 17.1 milligrams per liter (17.1 ppm)
GroundwaterWater confined in permeable sand layers or cavities between rock or clay. All subsurface water
HardnessThe concentration of calcium and magnesium salts in water
High-Purity WaterHighly-treated water with attention to microbiological reduction or elimination; the term commonly used in the pharmaceutical industry
HousingA ported chamber with closure, which directs the flow of fluid through the filter element.
Hydrologic CycleThe natural cycle of water as it passes through the environment by evaporation, condensation, precipitation, and retention in the oceans or on land
InfluentThe fluid entering the filter.
IonAn atom or molecule which has lost or gained one or more electrons, thereby acquiring a net electric charge
Ion ExchangeA process in which ions are preferentially based on equilibrium, adsorbed from a solution for equivalently-charged ions attached to small solid structures called resin
Membrane (Polymeric)Highly-engineered polymer film containing controlled distribution of pores. Membranes serve as a barrier permitting the passage of materials only up to a certain size, shape, or character. Membranes are used as the separation mechanism in reverse osmosis, electrodialysis, ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and icrofiltration, as disc filters in laboratories, and as pleated final filter cartridges, particularly in pharmaceutical and electronic applications
mg/LMilligrams of an element per liter of water; approximately equal to ppm
Microfiltration (MF)Filtration designed to remove particles and bacteria in the range of 0.1 to 3 microns in diameter
MicronA metric unit of measurement equivalent to 10-6 meters, 10-4 centimeters. Symbol is ?
Mixed-BedAn ion exchange tank consisting of both cation and anion resin mixed together. Provides the most complete deionization of water, up to 18.3 megohm/cm resistivity. Commonly used to polish water already treated by two-bed ion exchange tanks or reverse osmosis
Nanofiltration (NF)A crossflow membrane separation process which removes particles in the 250 to 1000 molecular weight range, selected salts and most organics; sometimes referred to as a softening membrane process
NominalWith regard to the micron rating of cartridge filters, refers to an approximate size particle, the vast majority of which will not pass through the filter. A small amount of particles this size or larger may pass through the filter
OsmosisThe spontaneous flow of water from a less concentrated solution to a more concentrated solution through a semipermeable membrane until energy equilibrium is achieved.
Particle Filtration (PF)Filtration rated in the range of 1 to 75 microns. Typically handled by cartridge filters.
ParticulateMinute, separate pieces of matter
PermeableAllowing some material to pass through.
PermeateThat portion of the feed stream which passes through a membrane, leaving behind a more concentrated stream
pHAn expression of hydrogen ion concentration; specifically, the negative logarithm of the hydrogen ion concentration. The range is from 0 to 14, with 7 as neutral, 0 to less than 7 as acidic, and 7 to 14 as alkaline (basic)
ppmParts per million, commonly considered equivalent to milligrams per liter (mg/L)
psiPounds per square inch (pressure).
PyrogenAny substance capable of producing a fever in mammals. Often an organic substance shed by bacteria during cell growth. Chemically and physically stable, pyrogens are not necessarily destroyed by conditions that kill bacteria
Recirculationa) In crossflow membrane systems, the recycling of a portion of the stream to maintain a desirable flow. b) In water system design, the continuous operation of the transfer pump to keep water flowing through the system above the use rate, to reduce the hazard of bacterial growth. A portion of the water continuously goes back to the break tank
RegenerationThe displacement from the ion exchange resin of the ions removed from the process water or waste stream
RejectionIn crossflow membrane systems, the process of retaining at the membrane contaminants that are larger than the membrane’s pore sizes or are repelled by an electrical charge. In a membrane system, expressed as a percent of the total presence of those contaminants
ResinsSpecially manufactured polymer beads used in the ion exchange process to remove dissolved salts from water
ResistivityThe property of a substance (in this case, water) to resist the flow of electricity; the measurement of that resistance. The inverse of conductivity. Measured by a resistivity monitor and described in megohmcm
Reverse Osmosis (RO)The separation of one component of a solution from another component by flowing the feed stream under pressure across a semipermeable membrane. RO concentrates ionized salts, colloids, and organics down to 150 molecular weight in the concentrate stream and provides a purified stream of water. May also be called hyperfiltration
ScalingThe buildup of precipitated salts on such surfaces as pipes, tanks and boiler condensate tubes
SDISilt Density Index – test used to measure the level of suspended solids in feedwater for a reverse osmosis system
Suspended Solids (SS)Solid organic and inorganic particles that are held in suspension in a solution
TOCTotal Organic Carbon – The amount of carbon bound in organic compounds in a water sample as determined by a standard laboratory test. The CO2 is measured when a water sample is atomized in a combustion chamber
TurbidityA suspension of fine particles in water that cause cloudiness and will not readily settle due to small particle size
Two-BedA pairing of cation and anion ion exchange tanks, typically operating in series. Best used for the deionization of relatively high volumes of water. Capable of product water resistivity of up to 4 megohm/cm
Ultrafiltration (UF)Separation of one component of a solution from another component by means of pressure and flow exerted on a semipermeable membrane, with membrane pore sizes ranging from 10Å to 0.2 micron. Typically rejects organics over 1000 MW while passing ions and small organics
Ultrapure WaterHighly-treated water of high resistivity and no organics; usually used in the semiconductor and pharmaceutical industries
Ultraviolet (UV)Radiation having a wave length shorter than visible light but no longer than X-rays. Ultraviolet light with a wave length of 254 nm is used to kill bacteria and destroy ozone
USPUnited States Pharmacopoeia which publishes standards for the pharmaceutical industry, including those for water quality. Was established by the US Congress in 1884 to control drug makeup
ValidationIn the pharmaceutical industry, the mandating of specific testing and recordkeeping procedures to ensure compliance not only with a specific quality but with a specific means to achieve that quality
WFIWater For Injection – high-purity water intended for use as a solvent for the preparation of parenteral (injectable) solutions. Must meet specifications as listed in the USP