How Does Ozone Destroy Bacteria, Viruses and Cysts?
Ozone owes its biocidal effectiveness to its ability to oxidise organic materials in bacterial membranes, which weakens the cell wall leading to rupture and immediate death of the cell. In contrast, chlorine, and all other oxidising and non-oxidising biocides, must be transported across the cell membrane in order to interfere with either the nuclear reproductive mechanism or various enzymatic life giving reactions in the cell. In either event, this results in substantially less biocidal efficiency.
For this reason, ozone is capable of destroying all bacteria, algae and biofilms with no risk of resistance build up or immunity. Even resistant and problematic aqueous micro-organisms, such as Giardia, Cryptosporidium, streptococcus fecalis and E.coli causing grave human health concerns in potable water, are readily and rapidly inactivated by ozone. Ozone remains effective over a wide pH range.
Although viruses are more resistant to ozone destruction than bacteria, viral inactivation occurs more readily with ozonation than with chlorination. Poliovirus types I, II and III are 99% inactivated by exposure to 0.3 mg/ltr, maintained over a three minute period.
SOCOTEC provides a range of water treatment services using ozone as a disinfectant, including:
- Filtex ozone units for cooling towers
- OCS units for use on bottled water plants
- OFG units for use in pharmaceutical and CIP
For further information on SOCOTEC’s ozone water treatment services, please read our FAQ's or contact us.