Silverline UK Ltd, Manufacturers of Water Treatment Equipment

Microplastics

Microplastics, or ‘Plastic Microbeads’ are described as plastic particles that are less than 5mm in length. There does not, yet, seem to be a unified agreement on the upper and lower size boundaries of what is defined as a Microplastic and this can make it difficult to know what filter will remove some or all micro plastic particles from your drinking water

A Quick Overview of Measurements
1 µm is 1 Micron.
1 Micron is 0.001mm.
When referencing academic research we use the symbol µm, we do this for maintaining accuracy/integrity of the referenced literature. When referring to our products we use the word ‘Micron’ for ease of reading.

What is a Microplastic

An article in Environmental Toxicity and Chemistry (citation 1), looking into the effects of microplastics on marine wildlife have researched microplastics as small as 30μm (or 0.03mm) up to 165μm (0.165mm).

A different article, published by the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, titled “Towards a definition of microplastics: Considerations for the specification of physico-chemical properties” (citation 2), looks at different interpretations of what a ‘microplastic’ is. For example, the European MSFD Working Group on Good Environmental Status (WG-GES) describes “small microplastics” as “20μm to 1mm” while the “International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry has set the upper boundaries for microplastics to 100 µm” and a lower size boundary for microparticles to 0.1 µm.

While definitions and terms vary, such as microplastics and microparticles, we can assume that there are unwanted plastics that are able to enter our water supply and these plastics can vary in size from 0.1 µm up to 5mm.

 

Removing Microplastics from Water

While the future definition of Microplastic is likely to include plastics as small as 0.1 µm it could prove extremely costly to target plastics as small as this. This is why, here at Silverline UK we have developed a variety of Microplastics Filtration Systems to suit a range of budgets.


Citation ArticleJournal / Institution
1 Size‐ and shape‐dependent effects of microplastic particles on adult daggerblade grass shrimp (Palaemonetes pugio) Environmental Toxicity and Chemistry
2 Towards a definition of microplastics: Considerations for the specification of physico-chemical properties Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment