Pearls of Wisdom
Anyone with a family will tell you that the health of the water their loved ones swim in is important – ask a doctor about the importance of a germ-free pool, and they’ll tell you it’s vital. So when Leicester Hospital in the UK installed a new filtration system in its hydrotherapy pool, glass pearl media was the obvious choice.
Leicester Hospital serves over one million people living in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, and its special services in cardio-respiratory diseases, cancer and renal disorders reach a further two million patients. On weekdays, its hydrotherapy pool is filled with patients and staff, while on the weekends it is used by mothers and their babies. So with such heavy usage and an unsuitable filtration system, it’s little wonder the pool was frequently closed because of water quality problems. This 40m³ hydrotherapy pool needed to be back in action fast, and had to exceed health and safety standards in terms of water quality to ensure minimal risk to patients.
That’s where Waterco’s Glass Pearl media came into play, recommended by the country’s biggest swimming pool sector contractor, Hydrospec. “The best filtration media needed to be used in this installation, explains Hydrospec Managing Director, John Cheek. “Hospital patients use the pool five days a week, and often around 4-6 patients will be using it each hour. In November 2013 Hydrospec installed a Waterco SPDD1200 Nozzle Plate Filter with a 1.2m bed depth with Waterco Glass Pearl media with great results.
“Waterco Glass Pearls were used as independent tests confirmed that they could filter down to an impressive three micron and as a result were far superior in filtration than other media available, including sand and crushed glass media.”
The water saving ability of Glass Pearl is due to the spherical smooth shape, as this results in a low coefficient of friction. After each backwash, Glass Pearls are effectively cleansed of their trapped contaminants. Glass Pearls require up to 20 per cent less backwash water than sand, saving time and water. Glass Pearls operate on the basis of “depth filtration”; dirt is driven through the filter bed and trapped in minute spaces between the particles of filter media allowing the cleansed water to pass through. Conventional media such as sand is crushed and sieved, and generally has an irregular structure and a larger variation in particle size. A conventional media filter bed is more porous and unable to trap fine particles.
Glass Pearls are safe to handle and service in comparison to other glass media options such as crushed glass because they are spherical and do not have sharp edges. Also, if there’s ever a failure of the filter’s laterals and Glass Pearls flow into the swimming pool, they pose no risk of injury to swimmers.
John says Glass Pearl media also makes maintenance easier, as it needs less frequent backwashing than other media types. “The filtration rate is at 22m3/h/m2. Plus, it backwashes at only 16m3/h/m2 and this fluidises the bed extremely well,” he says. “The Leicester Hospital pool’s backwashing process is automated and runs for less than four minutes, which has reduced the water used. This, in turn, saves heated and chemically treated water.
“Micro biological tests are carried out on a weekly basis in-house. No problems have arisen since the installation and the client is very happy with it. We continue to service and maintain this site and have inspected the filter and media on several occasions and have not found any issues.”
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Waterco’s Glass Beads are also suitable for domestic use. Contact your nearest Swimart store Today.