Ammonia is a key parameter in water
and waste water. Often used as an indicator of the presence of contaminants in surface
water, the measurement of ammonia at the inlet of a drinking water treatment plant is key
to early warning process action.
Ammonia measurements are also used as a part of
chloramination schemes. In the chloramination process, ammonia is added to treated water,
prior to chlorine addition to form chloramines. Chloramines are a form of disinfectant
that, unlike chlorine alone, prevent the production of carcinogenic trihalomethanes
(THMs) in the presence of organics. Naturally, in this environment it is important
to know what the concentration is of both residual chlorine and ammonia.
Ammonia nitrogen is also a key parameter in waste water
processes, both upstream and in the final effluent. This is particularly true when waste
water operators have their discharge permitted for nitrites.
Capital Controls A100 Ammonia Monitor was designed with
all of these issues in mind. A stand alone, self calibrating monitor, the A100 can be
trusted to provide constant and consistent ammonia results. It uses the tried and tested
ion selective electrode (ISE) method. The ISE responds to changes in ammonia concentration
very sensitively and can be calibrated across a broad range of measurements.
To measure ammonia with an ISE you first have to add an
alkali (to pH > 10.5) and raise the temperature (to 96°F). If this doesnt happen
correctly then the ammonia value the ISE provides cannot be trusted. The A100 is unique in
that it automatically polices the pH and temperature of the sample to ensure that it is
being correctly prepared.