ALGAE: Aquatic photosynthetic organisms that can range from single-cell forms to giant kelp. Highly deformable, algae can be a significant challenge to many filtration systems.
BACK FLUSH: The reverse flow of water through a filtration system, used to dislodge trapped particles.
BRACKISH: A level of salinity between fresh water and seawater – generally 0.5 to 30 grams of salt per liter.
DELTA: Change. A specific “Delta-P,” or a pressure differential across a filter surface, is the trigger for self-cleaning in many sophisticated filtration systems.
DESAL: Short for desalination, the removal of salts from water.
EFFLUENT: Filtered liquid leaving the filter.
ELEMENT: The device that performs the filtration.
FILTER CAKE: Debris collected on the surface of the filter.
FILTRATION DEGREE: The size of the pores in the filtration medium.
FLUX: The rate of water flow per unit of membrane filtration area.
FOULANT: Material that obstructs, such as sediment or biological material that blinds a filter or intake.
GPM: Gallons per minute.
MICRON: One-millionth of a meter, or micrometer.
POTABLE: Suitable for drinking.
PRESSURE: The force of an object applied in a direction perpendicular to its surface. A key metric in filtration systems.
RECOVERY: The amount of feed flow that is converted into filtrate flow by a membrane filtration system.
SEDIMENT: Solid particles of organic or inorganic material, generally from weathered rock.
TDS: Total dissolved solids. These solids are in molecular, ionized or microgranular form and can pass through a two-micron filter.
TERTIARY: Treatment of water to remove nutrients such as phosphorus and nitrogen.
TSS: Total suspended solids. Generally solids that can be captured by a filter with a filtration degree.
TURBIDITY: The cloudiness or haziness of a liquid caused by particles invisible to the naked eye.
WEAVEWIRE: A screen constructed of interlaced wire, yielding uniformly square pores.
The terms and definitions for this glossary were contributed by Jim Lauria, vice president of sales & marketing for Amiad Filtration Systems (www.amiadusa.com), a provider filtration solutions for industrial, municipal, and agricultural use. Mr. Lauria can be reached at email@example.com.