Commercial Blogs

The Effect of Hydropath Technology on Silicates

Prevention of New Scale

Scaling in pipes can be due to a range of different compounds. One of the most common of these is Calcium Carbonate (Limescale) but there is a range of others. One such family is the Silicates, (compounds containing silicon rather than carbon). In both cases, the minerals are in a dissolved form in the water as positively and negatively charged ions.

Hydropath technology acts to create clusters of ions. These clusters are groups of dissolved ions that are still in solution but nevertheless have some structure and act as precursors to crystals. This means that when the water becomes supersaturated, the clusters act as “starting points,” and the crystals form in suspension in the water, rather than as hard “scale” on the surface of pipes and equipment.

This process is based on the ionic nature of the crystals, and therefore this effect applies to any scale formed from ionic compounds, including Carbonate Scaling and Silicate Scaling.

Removal of Existing Scale

When dissolved calcium and bicarbonate ions come out of solution and crystallize, they release carbon dioxide into the water. This makes the water able to dissolve the existing Calcium Carbonate scale. This release does not occur with silicate-based compounds and therefore HydroFLOW cannot directly remove the existing silicate scale.

Combined Silicate and Carbonate Scale

In practice, the scale in many systems is formed by a combination of both calcium carbonate and silicate scale. This means that what often happens, is that the silicate scale is formed in a matrix with calcium carbonate scale. Therefore, removing the calcium carbonate scale can remove the silicate scale because the scale formation is a matrix of calcium and silica. The silica does,

in fact come off, but not as a direct result of dissolving the silica.