Besides quenching thirst, clean water plays a major role in various industrial operations. Almost all manufacturing processes require the use of water, including diluting, washing, cooling, and transporting products. Before being fed into the system, however, the water must be of high quality. Two filtration methods can be used—distillation and reverse osmosis.
Water is composed of light molecules of hydrogen and oxygen. Water turns to gas when heated, as these light molecules dissipate. Even in high temperatures, however, not all molecules dissipate as fast as water. Most of them maintain their properties and do not turn into gas. This is how the concept of distillation emerged. When water with dissolved solute is boiled, water molecules will evaporate, separating them from the solute. Gathering and condensing the vapor will produce pure water.
Much like distillation, reverse osmosis is a method that separates water from solute or contaminants. Instead of boiling, however, this process involves applying pressure to water against a membrane. As water passes through the membrane, the solute is filtered out and the only molecules that permeate to the other side are pure water molecules.