Water Filtration Systems Why does it matter?
Are you concerned about the quality of the water coming out of your faucet? • Do you ever really think about water quality? • According to the Environment Protection Agency, more than 90% of the water supply in the United States is safe to drink.
This is not the case in many countries around the world. • South America, Central America,India, Africa, and parts of Asia all have a large percent of their population with no access to appropriate water. • The map below shows the percentage of population with access to safe water by country. (Data from 2000)
What might cause water to be unsafe to drink? • Are there some countries that are more susceptible to pollution than others? • Why?
What does a water filter do? • How do you think a filter works? • On a very basic level, the process of filtration involves the flow of water through a granular bed of sand, or another suitable media, at a low speed. • The media retains most solid matter while permitting the water to pass. • This is usually repeated through several layers.
Why do we need to filter water? Think about ways water is used on a daily basis. • What are some ways you can think of? • Which of these uses would require the water to have gone through some type of filtration? • Which use do you think requires the highest level of purity? • Human consumption • Washing clothes or dishes • Bathing • In a garden • Washing a car • For industrial use • For medical use
What are the physical properties of a material that would make it useful as a filter? • Physical properties include, but are not limited to:color, size, shape, texture, density, flexibility, conductivity, magnetism, opacity, mass, odor, melting point, boiling point, solubility, polarity and state • Reflect for a moment on what you have learned about physical properties. • Which of the physical properties are important to consider?
Your team will be working cooperatively, collaborating to design and test a water filtration system. • You will use your knowledge of science and math with your creativity to design a water filtration system that can clean contaminated water by removing particulate matter and color. It also needs to filter the water in a reasonable amount of time. What now?