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How Copper/Silver Ionization Works

The System.

If you can recall your high school chemistry days, an Ion is any atom with an electrical charge - positive if it is short an electron, negative if it has an extra electron. An ion with a positive charge is called a cation, while one with a negative charge is known as an anion. To ionize something means to transform the atom into one of these two ionic forms.

The Clearwater purification system consists of a state-of-the-art, microprocessor control box and a scientifically designed set of electrodes composed of copper and silver that are set slightly apart from each other. Water is passed through a specially built flow-cell chamber that houses the electrodes.



Microprocessor control box with electrode, for smal

Microprocessor control box with electrodes, for bigger pool

Microprocessor control box with electrodes, for coolig tower

The control box works by generating a precise, low-voltage, DC current at milliamp levels to the electrodes. These electrodes consist of a metal-plated cathode and a metal-plated anode. A current is passed between the cathode and the anode, thus producing copper and silver ions by normal plating. Basically, the current causes some of the outermost atoms of the electrodes to lose an electron, thus becoming positive ions. In the specially developed flow cell, 100% of the water will pass through the electrodes. While the water is running through the chamber, many of these ions are swept away before they can reach the other side of the electrodes. As a result, copper and silver ions are dispersed into the body of water that is being purified.

How  MineralPURE  works ?

The amount of ions introduced is controlled by the microprocessor control box, an adjustable transformer that changes 220 volt AC current from the power source to a low voltage DC current. The higher the charge, the more ions are released. the amount of ions in the water are determined by a simple copper-ion test kit. The electrodes were designed that when the proper copper-ion level is obtained, the silver level will be correct too. Both the anode and cathode are plated with the same mixture of copper and silver. The polarity is switched back and forth between the electrodes two elements every five (5) minutes to prevent plating of the cathode - a process that reduces the electrode's surface area over time. The polarity change assures equal wear and tear of the two electrodes and prolongs life.

Buzz Aldrin, Apollo II Astronaut, in the office
 of ClearWater
It was NASA that harnessed what nature already knew, and designed an ionization system for their Apollo flights.

  The Johnson Space Center developed an electrolytic silver ion generator only slightly larger than a cigarette pack and weighting only 30 grams. This small ionizer required minimal power and no astronaut monitoring. Mounted at various locations in the potable water supply and wastewater systems, the ionizer would dispense silver ions to eliminate bacteria and viruses. In 1962, silver was approved for use in drinking water by the U.S. Public Health Service. Clearwater was granted a license from NASA to use their technology as the basis for its purification system as an alternative approach to the use of conventional purification chemicals.

Clearwater has been written up in NASA magazines, had its product presented in NASA lectures across the country, and was recently nominated by the Johnson Space Center's "Product Hall of Fame" as one of the most successful companies using NASA technology.

Today, copper is recognized as one of the best algaecide killers known to man. Oxides and sulfates of copper are used for pesticides, algaecides and fungicides. Pool stores worldwide sell copper based algaecide to kill black algae - the toughest of all to kill.

Silver has been known as an effective bacteria and virus killer for centuries. Silver sulfate is the standard antibacterial treatment for burns and any type or an open wound, and is used to protect the eyes of newborns. Household and industrial carbon filters purify water through the presence of silver particles and thus the accumulation of bacteria is avoided. These days, to prevent the occurrence of odour-causing bacteria in shoes, fine threads of silver are woven in to socks. Similarly, the surfaces of fridge interiors are rendered antibacterial simply by the presence of silver ions. Activated carbon filters, for drinking water purification, impregnate silver to prevent bacterial build-up. Silver is used as the drinking water purification for half the world's airlines and in over 1,000 passenger ships. Soft drink, beer, liquor, wine and other beverages are rendered pure and more palatable by the addition of silver in over 70 countries.

Hundreds of studies by major universities have documented the effectiveness of the copper/silver ionization system.
When copper (0,2 - 0,3 ppm copper) and silver ions are released into the water, these cationic, surface-active ions are a potent biocide. The disinfection action takes place when the positively charged copper and silver ions form electrostatic bonds negatively charged areas on the microorganism cell walls. These electrostatic bonds create stresses which lead to distorted cell wall permeability, minimizing the normal intake of life sustaining nutrients. Once inside an algae cell, copper and silver attack sulfur containing amino acid residues in the proteins used for photosynthesis (the process of converting light into usable food and energy). As a result, photosynthesis is blocked and lead to cell lysis and death. If the algae cell manages to live, the reproduction process is hampered by the presence of the copper ions and the spread of algae is held in check. Bacteria is killed, rather that suppressed.




Copper/silver ionization in combination with
low levels of chlorine offer a dual safety system

The greatest benefit of copper/silver ionization is that the ions remain in the water providing a residual protection. They provide long-term, nontoxic purification and prevent against recontamination. Unlike most other types of sanitizers, the copper and silver ions remain in the water until they flocculate, or form masses with algae and bacteria and then become large enough to be removed by the filtering equipment. When the "used" copper and silver ions are removed, the microprocessor control box is always producing new copper and silver ions to continuously sanitize the water. Generally the setting of the microprocessor is kept at the same setting, thus a proper amount of copper and silver ions are always in the water. If your test kit shows a copper-ion level too low, simply turn the control knob up a notch. The digital display will show the milliamp charge going to the electrodes. Even if the unit was turned off, the copper and silver ions remain in the water until they flocculate with algae and bacteria, and are removed by the filtering system. This can last several months!

In Brooklyn, Massachusetts, USA, a scientific study was undertaken over a period of several months, to document the effectiveness of copper/silver ionization in public swimming facilities. The results indicated that the use of copper/silver ionization, combined with small amounts of chlorine (1/3 of usualy used amount of chlorine), produces a far faster, longer-lasting and more effective level of disinfection than that seen using the traditional chlorine-only method, due to the incredible (and unexpected) synergetic effect of the ionization process.
Using these techniques, public swimming pools can reduce their use of chlorine by up to 70% and achieve a reduction of their output of toxic trihalomethanes by up to 150%.

Many studies conducted world-wide (see our scientific library), have shown copper-silver-ions, when used in combination with reduced levels of Chlorine have a synergistic effect, and offer a dual safety system for safe water in public pools.

Although the use of chlorine disinfection still continues in the treatment of swimming pools in Europe, there exist, in Belgium (St. Vieth and Leuwen) and France, public swimming pools which, for already more than thirty years, have been disinfected solely by copper/silver ionization.


For more than 30 years, the swimming pools of St. Vith have been kept clean and disinfected through the means of copper/silver ionization, without any addition of chlorine and with the full support of local sanitation authorities.

The Clearwater Disinfection System is easy to operate, requires little maintenance and is backed by a 3 or 5 years warranty. The copper and silver ionization has been proven to kill cryptosporidium, E-Coli, V. Cholera, Legionnaires Disease, and many other types of bacteria and viruses.

The Clearwater  System can be used on virtually any body of water. We have systems on tens of thousands of swimming pools, spas, cooling towers, hospital water supplies, Marine habitat aquariums, fish ponds, cisterns, lakes, quarries, pilas, drinking water systems - under the counter, household, and bottled water systems.

ClearWaters' system will kill

more than 650 types of bacteria, viruses and protozoa.


A sampling of what copper/silver ionization will kill:

  • Amoebae dysenteriae
  • Bacillius subtilis
  • Bacillius typhosus
  • Cryptosporidium
  • Endamoeba histolytica
  • Escherichia coli (e. coli)
  • Giardia lamblia
  • Herpes virus
  • HIV
  • Influenza A & B
  • Legionella pneumophila
  • Poliomyelitis virus
  • Proteus valgaris
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Salmonella
  • Saccharomyees cerevisiae
  • Sarcina Flava
  • Shingella dysentiniae
  • Shigella flexneria
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Streptococus faecalis
  • V. cholera
  • Vaccinia virus
  • Vibrio cholerae


Water Disinfection Systems

At right is a view of the dolphin pool at the Clearwater Marine Science Center, Clearwater Beach, Florida. Because high levels of chlorine cause damage to the skins of dolphins and turtles, the Marine Science Center employs a chlorine-free system of water purification. The system, is based on technology developed by NASA during the Apollo Lunar Landing Program. Clearwater employs variations of the basic technology in a number of other applications. For cooling towers, the CLEARWATER ionization systems cleans tanks of bacteria and algae, while the Clearwater SCALEBLASTER attacks the "scale" and corrosion that commonly build up in such towers. CLEARWATER produces systems for desinfecting swimming pools, spas, hot tubs, water recycling systems, systems for bacteria/algae control in ponds and marine saltwater habitats, systems for hospital water purification, and systems for purifying drinking water.

Today, Copper and Silver's natural antimicrobial properties are being utilized in an array of applications ranging from anti-bacterial solid surface products to water purification, food purification, to antiseptics and anti-fungal products to medical devices and hygiene products.
Results from ongoing clinical trials indicate the important roles for Copper and Silver ionization in reducing contamination in hospital environments, clinics, schools and therefore lowering the risk of healthcare acquired infections.

Many studies conducted world-wide (see our scientific library), have shown copper-silver-ions, when used in combination with reduced levels of Chlorine have a synergistic effect, and offer a dual safety system for safe water.

Copyright 2015 by ClearWater Tec S.L.