Oil; it has powered societal advances for decades, but at what cost? Recent catastrophes such as the BP oil spill in 2010 highlight how detrimental the crude substance is to our environment. These events have been leading to companies worldwide being held to a higher standard regarding corporate social responsibility. Today’s point in focus; helping the environment through the separation of oil and water.

Firms have undertaken ventures to create innovative instruments to aid this oil skimming process; some being very successful. Oil skimming is a simple, reliable and competent tools for the separation of oil from water. They are a tool of environmental sustainability, hoping to create a better life for humans around the world. More times than not, oil skimmers used in isolation can obtain desired levels of water purity. Where the oil-water ratio is more unfavourable, an oil skimmer can be used as a cost-effective, preliminary process before the introduction of more expensive treatments, such as chemical processing and membrane filtration, are introduced. There are two main devices which are leading the way in oil skimming: the Automatic Floating Skimmer and the Manual Rotary Pipe Skimmer.

Automatic Floating Skimmer

This corrosion-resistant skimmer is designed for flexibility and diversity of use. It is a silver steel that is corrosion resistant. This means that it can be used to treat a wide variety of stubborn liquids at differing concentrations and depths. These automatic skimmers are placed on a liquid surface and will skim the oil, separating it from the water. This automatic skimmer can be assembled and dis-assemble and is light in weight, allowing for easy operation. The debris screen kit prevents any floating materials entering the skimmer causing damage.

Manual Rotary Pipe Skimmer

These cost-effective, easy to install, low maintenance instruments are designed for durability in any given environment. Made from fiberglass and PVC, they are corrosion resistant, allowing them to be used in a plethora of substances. A serious advantage of the manual oil skimmer is that they can be fitted into any structure that requires floating oil removal. This allows for the removal of oil from structures where, in the past, there may have been no remedy.

While oil skimming focuses on the removal of oil from a liquid’s surface, there are several devices that completely separate oil from water, regardless of whether or not the oil is on the liquid’s surface. This ingenuity is a trailblazer in environmental therapy as we can purify water where we once could not. The three main separators that firms offer clients are the above grade, flush-with grade and the below grade.

Above Grade

This oil separator is recommended when there is no gravity flow to the contaminated liquid. Through the use of a pump, the oil-soaked water can be fed into the device.

Flush-With Grade

In contrast to the above grade separator, the flush-with device is recommended where gravity flow is possible. With these devices, the contaminated liquid can be brought or ‘flushed’ to the separation tank.

Below Grade

With a large collection area and lightweight removable pack, the below grade oil-water separator can be fitted underground. It is a discreet way to capture contaminated liquid.
Multiple firms are leading the way in the field of oil skimming and oil separation. A long list of partnerships with respectable bodies serves to show that the industry for oil separators is thriving. Costco, Shell, FedEx, Air Canada, Honda and Exxon, are a few to mention. These partnerships are leading the way to a better, brighter, more environmentally sound future. Growing concerns amid the state of the earth’s atmosphere is generating a paradigmatic shift in the way society views contaminants. As a result, firms have been under the close scrutiny of the Environmental Protection Agency of the United States. With this upheaval, the demand and need for the services provided by OSW Tech will only continue to grow and grow in years to come.


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