Chlorinated water disinfection celebrates 100 years of success

In 1913, Siemens installed the first commercially-produced gas chlorinator for water disinfection in a public drinking water system.

ALPHARETTA, GA, Sept. 5, 2013 -- Over 100 years ago, the first commercially-produced gas chlorinator for water disinfection was installed in a public drinking water system by Wallace & Tiernan, now a Siemens Water Technologies company, revolutionizing the way the world fought water-borne diseases -- killing nearly 30,000 people per year in the 1900s in the United States alone.

Since its inception in 1913, chlorination has expanded globally, and it is now used throughout a range of operations, including waterworks, swimming pools, power generation, sewage treatment, food processing and industrial applications.

In addition to chlorination solutions by chlorine gas, hypochlorite or chlorine dioxide, Siemens also provides membrane treatment, high-rate clarification, disinfection by-product (DBP) treatment and controls technologies as well as technical expertise to help consulting engineers, municipalities and industries clean and purify water. The company also focuses on ultrapure water and drinking water, waste reduction, energy and process efficiency, desalination and water reuse. Among the current R&D initiatives underway are an advanced desalination technology to greatly increase energy efficiency.

"The use of chlorine in water treatment has arguably done more to safeguard the health of the world than any other development," said Dr. Lukas Loeffler, Siemens Water Technologies CEO. "To this day, chlorination in general is still the most widely used disinfection method internationally and we continue to develop it and other water and wastewater treatment technologies to ensure safe drinking water, clean process water for industry and a healthy environment."

About Siemens

The Siemens Industry Sector (Erlangen, Germany) is the world's leading supplier of innovative and environmentally friendly products and solutions for industrial customers. With end-to-end automation technology and industrial software, solid vertical-market expertise, and technology-based services, the Sector enhances its customers' productivity, efficiency, and flexibility. With a global workforce of more than 100,000 employees, the Industry Sector comprises the Division’s Industry Automation, Drive Technologies and Customer Services as well as the Business Unit Metals Technologies. For more information, visit


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