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1.1 General Information and Principles of Operation
Your E-Series reverse osmosis (RO) machine is a durable piece of equipment which, with
proper care, will last for many years. These instructions give operating and maintenance
details vital to the sustained performance of the machine.
Reverse osmosis is the separation of one component of a solution from another component by
means of pressures exerted on a semipermeable membrane element. Removal of ionic, organ-
ic and suspended / dissolved impurities occurs during the RO process. Unlike a filter, which
separates by “normal” filtration, the General Electric (GE) Osmonics membrane element sep-
arates using a process called cross flow filtration. Feed water solution is separated into two
streams, permeate and concentrate, and collected from both sides of the membrane element. A
semipermeable RO membrane element, under sufficient pressure, allows passage of purified
water while rejecting and concentrating dissolved and suspended solids.
Cross Flow Filtration
GE Osmonics manufactures a patented spiral-wound membrane element package, with a tur-
bulent flow design. This membrane element collects the purified water within a central tube,
the permeate tube (Figure 1.2, Membrane Element with Interconnectors and Figure 1.3, Cross
Sectional View of Membrane Element).