System for the elimination of Legionella in cooling towers

Following the recent outbreak of Legionella in Edinburgh, Scotland, it was appropriate that Wallenius Water brought their water sterilization system to a recent press conference in London and introduced Guardian Water Treatment as their agents for the deployment of the system in UK cooling tower and other water treatment applications.

It was on 8th January 2007 when Alfa Laval launched the PureBallast water purification system for marine applications, a system to meet the legislative requirements of IMO, the International Maritime Organization, in order to protect against potential ecosystem disasters that can be caused by transporting organisms around the world in ballast water. The sterilizing technology behind the system had been developed over many years by Wallenius Water, in Sweden, and licensed to Alfa Laval for marine applications. The system is described in reports on www.iainsider.com dated 8 January 2007, and uses UV light on a titanium dioxide catalyst within the liquid, to create high activity hydroxyl radicals, a short-lived powerful oxidant that kills such organisms.

Last month Wallenius Water were back in London offering similar technology, but now applied to the elimination of bacteria such as Legionella in air conditioning water cooling and recirculation systems, such as are used in cooling towers and boiler systems, with a new partner for the UK market, Guardian Water Treatment. Wallenius Water is partnering with distributors worldwide who understand the complexities of water treatment in such industrial applications, because while their purification system eliminates many of the dangerous chemicals previously used on site, any water treatment system needs the backing of expert on-site advice, to include pre-treatment and flow control.

Another application for Wallenius purification systems has been for bacterial control within the centralized metalworking fluid system at the SSAB machine workshop: SSAB is the Swedish steel producer. With the Wallenius system in operation on test for over a year, no extra biocides have been added, something that was previously very necessary. The SSAB goal had been to eliminate or drastically reduce the use of biocides in their metal working fluid, because this also has an impact on employee health. Health checks on the fluid have showed that the active biocide level is now too low to be measurable, but the bacterial levels are still below the allowed upper limit levels. The SSAB workshop had suffered from bacteria-related issues for a number of years but has now demonstrated that the growth of bacteria in the metal working fluid can be controlled without high biocide levels – even during the warm summer months, which is normally the most testing of conditions.

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