Sterilization, sanitation, and disinfection are three terms that are commonly used and often misused. Depending on what industry or profession, these terms may have the same or different meanings. We refer to sterilization as the inactivation of microorganisms, ozone, chlorine, and total organic carbon removal.
For medical water treatment, ultraviolet sterilization is used to inhibit growth of microorganisms, remove ozone, chlorine, and trace organics and reduce total organic carbon. The water to be sterilized is exposed to UV radiation in specially designed chambers that provide intimate contact of the water with the UV light source. Bacteria and other living organisms absorb the energy, which destroys or inactivates their DNA, thus preventing the bacteria from reproducing. Similarly, chemicals and organic compounds also absorb the energy but they are broken down into smaller and less harmful molecules.