Water Constituents

The concentrations of various substances in water in dissolved, colloidal, or suspended form are typically low but can vary considerably. A hardness value of up to 400 ppm of calcium carbonate (CaCO3), for example, is sometimes tolerated in public supplies, whereas 1 ppm of dissolved iron would be unacceptable. In treated water for high-pressure boilers or where radiation effects are important, as in some nuclear reactors, impurities are measured in very small units such as parts per billion (ppb).

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