Mar 13, 2012

Pentair Debuts New Water Conditioning Technology in U.S.

New system for commercial applications will become available later this year

Pentair Residential Filtration LLC, a subsidiary of Pentair Inc., launched its new electronic water purification system to the North American water industry today at the WQA Aquatech USA 2012 tradeshow. It is built around a hybrid deionization (DI) process using Pentair and Voltea technologies to combine the benefits of reverse osmosis (RO) filtration with those of a water softener without requiring salt as a regenerant.

Pentair developed the new technology through a partnership with the Dutch firm Voltea, which has licensed the technology exclusively to Pentair in residential and light commercial applications for point-of-entry products. The new technology, which was previewed at the Aquatech Amsterdam tradeshow in late 2011, uses capacitive electrodes to remove hardness and total dissolved solids from water without employing salt. The core of the system is Voltea’s patented stack configuration of electrodes, combined with ion-selective membranes. The treatment sequence begins with purification. This occurs as untreated water flows through the cell, where ions are drawn through the membranes and absorbed in the charged electrodes, producing high-quality treated water. The electrodes automatically regenerate when the system reverses its polarity. This drives the ions out of the electrodes and flushes them from the stack. The polarity is then reset to normal to start purification again.

Pentair will use the new system in products for light commercial applications such as retail operations, car washes and laboratories. The technology also will be used in products for residential customers through an agreement with Aquion Inc.’s RainSoft brand.

“Like a reverse osmosis system, this new product will produce safe, softer, bottled-quality water throughout an entire facility, but with 90% less wastewater. Plus, since it doesn’t use salt, there is no net increase in discharged total dissolved solids,” said Sam Karge, global vice president of marketing for Pentair Residential Filtration. “That makes it ideal for a variety of light commercial sectors including hotels/restaurants, healthcare, pharmaceutical and electronics manufacturing.”

The state-of-the-art technology within the hybrid DI system is driven by a Pentair-developed, advanced micro-controller that uses an array of sensors to monitor and manage all system and water quality parameters in real time. The technology continuously assesses the inlet and treated water quality, controls the power supplied to the stack, and adjusts operating cycles and system flows to continuously optimize performance. The controller includes self-diagnostics and auto-clean cycles. It also features a full-color touch screen user interface with animated “user” displays that are intuitive for the everyday user or homeowner, and interactive “technical” screens for system maintenance providers.

Products using the Pentair and Voltea technologies hybrid DI system are expected to become available in mid 2012.