The Importance of Water Treatment
Water systems can act as transportation systems for bacteria, through the build-up of biofilm.
Biofilm is a deposit made up of single-cell bacteria, algae and fungi. It sticks to surfaces and forms a matrix of cellular materials.
Bacteria and other free-floating organisms make contact with surfaces, where they attach themselves. Once attached, these bacteria and organisms start to grow.
They divide, forming dense structures of multiple thicknesses. The thicknesses of biofilms can vary, but slow-flowing water encourages deeper formations.
Once the cells in biofilm mature, they create complex, three-dimensional structures that criss-cross water channels, exchanging waste products and nutrients.
After reaching this mature stage, cells break away from the matrix, finding new surfaces to stick to, and forming colonies of their own.
As the cells spread in this way, they attract viruses and lifeforms, such as insect larvae, increasing the risk of widespread contamination of water systems.
You will find biofilm in pipework and water tanks, and it is the main reason water treatment is so important.