Maximum solids removal with minimal cleaning
It is being claimed that the use of titanium filtration membranes has the potential to increase production in the wine industry by more than 7%.
Titanium offers many advantages as it is strong, unaffected by salt or chemicals like chlorine and can be adjusted to screen out specific materials.
The Managing Director of the Australian manufacturer of titanium membranes, Advanced Material Solutions, Gilbert Erskine, said the titanium membranes, which can extract solids up to 80%, are so strong that they can run 24 hours a day for a week whereas polymeric (plastic) or ceramic filters have extraction limits of around 10% and can spend up to 30% of their time in cleaning mode. (AMS’s Viti-flow membrane can be cleaned in minutes with steam or hot water up to 90°C.)
A meatworks in Victoria that has already installed a commercial titanium filter system to remove fats, oils, grease and blood cells is reportedly reducing E. coli levels from 240,000 to 20 parts/100 mL.
The filtration systems are scalable with the bigger units installed at major Australian wineries so far featuring four sets of membranes capable of filtering 35,000–40,000 L/h. They produce clean filtrate at less than 1 NTU and solids of up to 80%.
Titanium is not cheap. It is, in fact, much more expensive than stainless steel but due to its properties it can be made much, much thinner with smaller capillary size than traditional stainless steel. This reduction in the weight of the membrane compensates for the high cost of the raw material.
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