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Ozone is a gas, a modified highly reactive form of oxygen (chemical formula O3). It is one of the strongest oxidizers and disinfectants available. It is stronger than chlorine, bromine, hydrogen peroxide and hypochlorous acid. Ozone kills E.Coli (commonly used to measure the effectiveness of sanitizers) 25 times more powerfully than hypochlorous acid (chlorine) and about 500 times faster.
There are two main methods of producing ozone. In the corona discharge method, air is passed through an electrically charged chamber, where a miniature "lightning storm" produces ozone from oxygen. In the UV method air is passed close to one or more Ultraviolet lamps where UV rays excite oxygen which then forms ozone.
An ozone generator in combination with chlorine or bromine reduces the chlorine or bromine used (up to 95% less). Chlorine or bromine is still required to kill the bacteria and must still be measured and tested for. Ozone can only oxidize organic wasts once chlorine or bromine has combined with them. Ozone only lasts between 20 seconds and 6 minutes in most spas and pools. Ozone will oxidize some minerals dissolved in the pool water like iron which then forms a cloudy precipitate which the filter will remove.
Once the ozone has done its job it reverts back to oxygen which
makes the water look, feel and even taste better.
Prepared by Trevor Croll,
42 Pearse Street, Keperra, Queensland Australia, 4054.
Phone 61 7 3855 1115