How does ozone work?
The third oxygen atom of ozone is extremely reactive because it is unstable. This atom readily attaches itself to other odor molecules. When contaminants such as odors, bacteria or viruses make contact with ozone, their chemical structure is changed to less odorous compounds. As more ozone attacks the remaining compounds, the odor is eventually destroyed. This process is called oxidation. Ozone essentially reverts back to oxygen after it is used. This makes it a very environmentally friendly oxidant.
How do our ozone generators generate ozone?
We use corona discharge process. By passing oxygen gas through a high voltage electrical field some of the oxygen molecules split into charged atoms which then in turn react with other oxygen molecules and form ozone. The oxygen concentration directly affects the ozone production rate. By reducing the oxygen feed gas flow the ozone concentration can be increased even further, but at the cost of reducing the ozone production.
What is ozone half-life?
As soon as ozone is formed in a generator and dispersed in a room, some of it reverts back into oxygen (O2). This step occurs by several processes including the following:
Oxidation reacts with an organic material such as odors or smoke. Reactions with bacteria etc., which again consumes ozone by oxidation reactions.
Additionally ozone breaks down thermally. Higher temperatures destroy ozone quicker than lower temperatures. The ozone that remains is referred to as Residual ozone. “Residual” ozone created will return to oxygen usually within 30 minutes, in amounts equal to half its level. What this means is that after each subsequent 30 minute period there would be half as much residual ozone left at the end of the period as was present at the beginning of the period. This is similar to a geometric progression of 16; 8; 4; 2; 1. In practice, the half life is usually less than 30 minutes due to temperature, dust and other contaminants in the air.
Therefore, ozone, while very powerful, doesn’t last long. It does its job and then disappears back into safe oxygen.
What is the right level of ozone?
The right level of ozone is when all the generated ozone is being consumed. This only applies to continuous ozone use in occupied environments – not for shock treating. However, this is difficult to attain because it becomes a balancing act. Initially the machine’s output is set high to get rid of the problem odor as quickly as possible. As this is being accomplished, less ozone is required for the diminishing odor, etc., thereby leaving some residual ozone in the air. If the machine output is not turned down, then more residual ozone will remain. If a strong smell of ozone is noticed, then there is more ozone present than is required. Simply turn the rheostat (output level control) down. With ozone, more is not considered better.
Note: It is not necessary that ozone be detected by humans for it to be effective. Ozone can work even when humans are not able to smell it.
What size generator do I need?
Picking the right ozone generator can be a daunting task.
For both our residential and industrial generators, the process of selecting the appropriate generator includes many variables. For residential units; variables such as type of odor, square footage, humidity, temperature, etc. will effect your generator selection. For industrial units; variables such as feed-gas generation, objective, budgets, square footage, etc. will effect your generator selection. Let our team of technical sales representative help you make that choice easier!