THE WOOLF ELECTRIC DISINFECTANT PLANT.
R. A. E Woolf’s “Electrozone,” a powerful disinfectant, consisting of hypochlorites and other hypo salts, formed by electrolysing sea water, is attracting no litttle attention in the scientific world. Heretofore this product, in both the dilute and concentrated form, has been used more particularly for medicinal purposes, in comparatively small quantities, and for domestic disinfection, although one or two plants have been installed in connection with hospitals; one having likewise been employed to purify the water of this city at Brewsters, N. Y., from which part of the metropolitan supply is drawn.
The direct application of such a cheap method of producing a powerful disinfectant has naturally won the attention of health authorities of cities to the Woolf disinfecting process; and what may be considered to mark an epoch in the methods of maintaining the health of cities is the inauguration in Philadelphia of a Woolf electric disinfecting plant under the auspices of the health department. The initial plant has now been installed, and is situated in the basement of the public building at Market and Broad streets in that city. It has a capacity for making 500 gallons of disinfectant every three hours. The current for electrolysing the salt solution is taken from the lighting current of the building, and in order to reduce the voltage from 110 to 6 volts, which is that required for the purpose, an Excelsior motor is used, which drives directly an Excelsior dynamo, through a flexible Jeather coupling. The dynamo is capable of delivering 1,000 amperes at six volts. Two tanks of 700 gallons capacity each are employed, and the electrodes are of copper coated with platinum. A connection runs from the electrolysing tank, by which the disinfectant is pumped to a cart outside the building, a distance of about 200 feet, the cart being used to distribute the liquid wherever required. It is intended with this plant to disinfect the overground drainage in the thickly populated parts of Philadelphia, the liquid being distributed in sprinkling carts. A por. tion will also be at the disposal of the Board of Health for use in special cases of domestic disinfection.
The generating plant is in charge of Mr. J. C. Sager, chief of the Philadelphia electrical bureau. It wasstarted on October 1, when an inspection of the plant was made by the board of health, and several of the most prominent medical men in Philadelphia. The plant was formally accepted by the city on October IS.