Potable water treatment

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Colony water treatment.png

Potable water treatment facilities are an essential requirement for a Martian settlement. A number of the following processes may be required, depending on the source of the water. Some industrial processes will produce clean water than can be used in a potable water system. Waste water treatment facilities are very similar to water treatment facilities, but will treat more heavily contaminated water. In a closed loop system, the cleaned waste water is returned to the potable water treatment system for re-use. The water distribution system links the two ends of the water infrastructure.

Martian water contaminants

Salts, sand and hydrated minerals. Minerals (Ca,Mg,Fe) Primary contaminants from the martian environment and secondary contaminants from human use.

Water hardness. perchlorate.

Water treatment processes

  • Reverse osmosis (perchlorates,Ca,Mg)
  • Ion exchange resins (perchlorates, calcium, magnesium)
  • Sand filtration (suspended solids)
  • Chlorination (biological contamination, pathogens)
  • Ozonation (biological contamination, pathogens)
  • Activated charcoal (organics, Volatile Organic Compounds)
  • PH balancing
  • Electroconductivity adjustment
  • Flocculation (suspended particles)
  • Desalination (salts, Ca,Mg)
    • Evaporation
  • Organic solids removal

Water treatment plant

The first water treatment plants will be packaged units provided from Earth. These types of units are already produced on Earth for buildings and communities isolated from the larger centralized water treatment plants available for towns and cities.