Eltron Water Systems

Improved Filter Plant Cleaning with PeroxEgen H2O2 Water Treatment System

(Download the PDF version of this tech brief)

Highlights:

  • Simultaneously produces caustic cleansers containing H2O2
  • Removes organic foulants and microbial growth from filter membrane surfaces and restores membrane permeability
  • Eliminates surfactants from the cleanser, representing significant cost savings
  • Requires only water, air, electricity and optional additives

Cleaning filter plants used in the dairy industry is time-consuming and costly. Yet, it’s necessary to clean and
disinfect filters, tanks, pipes and other process equipment every day by working through a series of caustic and acid
flushes, followed by microbial disinfectant treatment. Typically, the holdup volumes of large filter plants are as much as 2,000 gallons, requiring a significant investment in filter plant maintenance.

Cleaning solutions are prepared from chemical concentrates (acids, caustics, surfactants, and a disinfectant) that are
hazardous to handle, can be expensive, and might be harsh on filter membranes, reducing membrane life. Those
solutions might not provide complete removal of foulants, which leads to higher membrane replacement costs and
equipment down time. The spent cleansers often have high biological oxygen demand (BOD) and must be treated prior to discharge. Additionally, evolving regulations relevant to the discharge of chlorine residuals and harmful chlorinated
byproducts are driving the need for a cost-effective replacement for chlorine.

Reduce Cost, Increase Performance

PeroxEgen™, a turn-key, mobile electrolytic technology available from Eltron Water Systems, generates H2O2 on-site for a variety of water treatment, advanced oxidation, and cleansing applications. PeroxEgen™ requires only water, air, and electricity as consumables for water treatment and allows pH to be controlled for a variety of applications. PeroxEgen™ can be operated in flow-through mode for direct treatment at low H2O2 concentrations (<100 mg/L) or in batch mode, recirculating H2O2 to build up higher concentrations. Unlike bulk catalytic production methods, Eltron’s electrolytic process is virtually insensitive to temperature.

Eltron Water Systems has developed a cleanser production system incorporating PeroxEgen™ that simultaneously
produces caustic cleansers containing H2O2 for about 1/5th the cost of leading high-performance cleansers. Several of the cost, performance, and safety issues associated with cleaning filter plants can be alleviated by cleansers produced by the PeroxEgen™ system.

In addition to water, air and electricity, the only consumables are benign electrolyte salts that deliver the proper acid and caustic compositions, pH balance and higher H2O2 concentrations. PeroxEgen™ scales to fit varying applications
and can be interfaced with a clean-in-place (CIP) distribution system. In addition to being approved by the FDA, the
cleansers are compatible with stainless steel process equipment and are safe to use on filter membranes. An
additional benefit is that the organic material destruction by H2O2 and oxygen evolved from H2O2 greatly reduce BOD in discharge streams.

PeroxEgen™ cleanser solutions containing 300–500 mg/L H2O2 at pH 11.5–11.8 are extremely effective in removing organic foulants and microbial growth from filter membrane surfaces and restoring membrane permeability, without using surfactants. Eliminating surfactants from the cleanser represents a significant cost savings.

Maintaining high filter throughput is crucial to process efficiency. Typically, whey solutions are concentrated from
about 5%–35% solids using ultrafiltration each day, followed by filter plant cleaning prior to the next filtration cycle. In a pilot ultrafiltration system simulating this process, PeroxEgen™ proved to be far superior in maintaining membrane
permeability compared to conventional cleansers. PeroxEgen™- generated cleansers also control microbial growth very
effectively. Biostatic conditions were maintained for at least five days after using the PeroxEgen™ cleansers in the ultrafiltration system on cheese whey inoculated with problematic bacterial, spore-forming, and thermophilic species (Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilus, and Bacillus cereus) as well as unidentified background species.

Simplifying the Logistics of Handling H2O2

Current methods for generating H2O2 require large, centralized industrial facilities. H2O2  has to be distributed by
truck or rail. Transportation, handling, and storing concentrated H2O2  (50%–75%) creates a number of hazards, and meeting the associated regulations imposes more capital investment. Distributing H2O2 to remote locations potentially creates significant liability for distributors and increases costs for isolated water treatment and environmental remediation operations. All of these issues are hurdles that have made H2O2  use less common or impractical. Eltron’s PexoxEgen™ technology provides a different method for H2O2  delivery – at the point of use, simplifying the logistics, eliminating distribution costs, and minimizing hazards associated with handling and storage.

 

About Eltron Water Systems
Eltron Water Systems focuses on commercializing innovative, cost-effective water treatment technologies valuable to industries, utilities, and government organizations. The company draws on resources from its parent company, Eltron Research & Development, to explore practical, green solutions for preserving one of our most important and useful natural resources, water.

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