How to Remove Radium 226 from Your Water Supply
You may have heard about radium in your water and how essential it is to remove that. Here at Complete Water, we know how to remove radium from water using your industrial water system. Read on to learn more about radium, why radium should be removed from water, and how to remove it. If you have more questions, please feel free to contact us at Complete Water Solutions.
What Is Radium 226?
Radium is a radioactive metal that has a silvery white look to it. It forms when uranium and thorium break down in the environment. This decay occurs naturally in trace amounts in rocks, soils, and groundwater. This energy is part of the natural radiation to which all living creatures are exposed. One of the various forms of naturally occurring radium found in groundwater is Radium 226. As radium decays, it continually releases energy into the environment. This release of radiation that causes concern about the safety of radium. Each isotope of radium releases radiation at different rates. Radium-224 as an example, releases half of its radiation in about 3.5 days; whereas, radium-226, releases half of its radiation in about 1,600 years. This energy is part of the natural radiation to which all living creatures are exposed. One of the various forms of naturally occurring radium found in groundwater is Radium 226.
What are the risks of Radium 226?
Without proper filtration, Radium can enter the body through water used for drinking and cooking. You can also be exposed to radium through breathing and eating food. In the body, radium acts much like calcium. When ingested, about 80% of the radium will exit the body. A small amount (20%) of radium will enter the blood stream and be carried to all parts of the body especially your bones. Exposure to higher levels of radium over a long period of time can result in harmful effects some of which include, anemia, cataracts, fractured teeth, cancer (especially bone cancer), and death. Some of these effects may take years to develop and are mostly due to gamma radiation. Radium gives off gamma radiation, which can travel fairly long distances through air. Therefore, just being near radium at the high levels may be dangerous to your health. Some studies have shown that individuals who ingested high levels of radium were more likely to have bone cancer. As you can see, it’s essential to remove radium 226 from your water. The EPA has set a drinking water limit of 5 picocuries per liter (5 pCi/L) for radium-226. Complete Water Solutions has the experience, equipment and knowledge to help you obtain a safe drinking water supply. No matter how small or large your municipal supply is we can help.
How to Remove Radium 226 from Your Water Supply
Now that you are aware of what radium is and why it’s harmful to humans, Complete Water Solution can help you make sure radium is removed from your water.
To help reduce your risk of Radium exposure, Complete Water Solutions has several options available:
- The most common treatment technique is an Ion Exchange System. This filtering technique uses resin materials to capture charged Radium Ions. This system is robust and long-lasting.
- Greensand Filters use a specialized filter media used to remove radium from the source and allow it to be filtered out further down the filtration process
- Reverse Osmosis is another way to remove harmful contaminants from water. This process involves pressurizing water through various filter media and membranes that trap the radioactive metal.
The above methods can remove up to 90 percent of the radium 226 present, but it’s important to work with professionals to ensure the quality of your water meets the needs of your facility.
You can check out the process in action in the video below. If you have more questions or want to schedule service, please contact us here or give us a call using the number below. We’d be honored to help you remove radium from water using your industrial water system.
The Process in action
In the above video, Complete Water Solutions was contracted to replace an aging water system used to remove Radium Ra226 from a public water supply. The existing system was due for an upgrade, this was done to help ensure the safety of the public. Complete Water Solutions selected a triplex softener to have the ability to service one softener, keeping one line and having one in standby thus increasing the ability to remain online. We also selected Aquamatic Valves for the operations versus the old Fleck 2900. While the fleck 2900 worked well in the past, the customer wanted an easier valve to replace when repairs are needed, which keeps the majority of the repairs in-house.
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