Reverse osmosis is one of the most common and effective water treatment systems. The primary filtering media in water treatment systems is an RO membrane. Depending on your application, we offer different reverse osmosis membranes suited for sea water desalination, brackish water, and high flow commercial applications. A purification technology that uses a semipermeable membrane to reduce dissolved or suspended water contaminants. Reverse osmosis water filtration systems work by using high pressure to force water through a semipermeable reverse osmosis membrane element. RO membranes are made of a thick polyamide film that contains tiny pores through which water can flow. RO membrane element pore sizes can vary from 0.1 to 5,000 nanometers (nm) depending on application. The pores in the RO membrane are small enough to restrict organic compounds such as minerals and salt, but allow water molecules to pass through. Reverse osmosis membranes are also porous and restrictive enough to filter out disease causing pathogens and bacteria from water. About RO Membrane Fouling About RO membrane fouling All reverse osmosis membranes lose their performance and will foul over time. One of the primary reasons for RO membrane fouling is because of substances that deposit on the reverse osmosis membrane surface. The RO membrane elements can become fouled by suspended solids, microorganisms, and build-up from mineral scale. Examples of suspended solids often found in feed water can include oil, silica, clay, iron, sulfur and acids. To increase the life of your RO membrane, reduce most of these suspended solids before the water enters the membrane. Use a 5 micron carbon prefilter cartridge before the reverse osmosis membrane. This will help, but may not completely remove all suspended solids that cause a RO membrane to foul.