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Reverse Osmosis Water Purification Unit (ROWPU)


The 3000-gallon per hour (gph) ROWPU is the Army's primary water purifier at the Echelon Above Corps level. The 3000 gph ROWPU will treat fresh, brackish, and seawater sources, as well as NBC contaminated waters. The system is housed in 8 x 8 x 20 ft ISO containers, and mounted on an M871A2 trailer. It is hauled by an M932 truck, and is C-130 and C-141 air transportable.

The 3,000-GPH ROWPU is intended for use by nondivisional corps and EAC units for DS and GS water production operations. It is contained within a special 8- by 8- by 20-foot ISO container with an overpack. The 3,000-GPH ROWPU is mounted on a standard 30-foot military trailer and can be shipped aboard USAF aircraft. It is powered by a 60KW utility diesel generator that is mounted on the rear of the trailer. The 3,000-GPH ROWPU is designed to purify 3,000 gallons of water per hour from fresh water sources (1,000 ppm TDS or less) at a temperature of 77F. This ROWPU can produce 2,000 gallons of water from saline water sources (35,000 ppm TDS or more) at a temperature of 77F. As the raw water temperature drops, the production capability of the ROWPU is reduced, so that, at 50F, this ROWPU produces 1,500 GPH on fresh water sources and 1,000 GPH on saline water sources. Other external factors, such as turbidity, also affect production rates. This ROWPU is capable of effectively removing potentially hazardous concentrations of all known chemical and biological agents and radioactive by-products of nuclear origin.

The 1500 GPH ROWPU was developed to replace the 600 GPH ROWPU. It produces 1500 gallons of potable water each hour when operated on water with less than 1,000 parts per million (ppm) of total dissolved solids (TDS). If the raw water has more than 45,000 ppm TDS, it will produce 1,200 gallons per hour. The product water will meet the Tri-Service Field Water Quality Standards for long term consumption. The 1500 GPH ROWPU will operate in temperatures ranging from -25F to +140F. It will use state of the art technology to increase the 600 GPH ROWPU's output without increasing its size or weight. The 1500 GPH ROWPU will be operable either on the ground or mounted on a 5 ton trailer or a 5 ton truck. It will be transportable by any of the standard modes (highway, rail, air, or marine). It is expected to have a life of 20 years.

The raw water system draws raw water from the source thru a coarse screen. The raw water pump is a self-priming type pump. When the pump casing is filled with water and the pump is turned on, it will pull air out of the suction hose and pull the water up to the pump. Use a hand-operated prime pump to assist the raw water pump to quickly pull up the water. Use either a water can or the hand prime pump for initial priming. Without the hand pump, a lift of 15 feet through five hose sections will require six to eight minutes. With the hand pump, this is reduced to two to three minutes. Once the pump is primed, suction and discharge check valves (one-way flow valves) prevent the water from running back down to the water source when the pump is stopped. If these seal tightly, the pump will only require initial priming. Raw water pump discharge pressure delivers raw water to the cyclone separators where the water is swirled at a high rate of speed so that the heavier dirt and sand are thrown to the outside of the swirl and drip to the bottom where they are carried away through waste hoses. Any suspended solid which will settle in a glass in less than 20 minutes will be removed. Water which passes through the separators is delivered under pressure up to the ROWPU van where suction of a booster pump inside the van feeds pressurized water to the filtration components.

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