Water Purified by Electricity.
The question of sterilizing water for the supply of cities by electricity known as the Webster method, was the subject of a paper by R. Meade Bache, recently read before the American Philosophical Society. Mr. Bache has made a number of experiments, which go to prove that a current of electricity sent through water destroys bacteria ; but as in prior experiments by othets, it is still doubtful whether the liberated oxygen or the electricity itself kills the germs. Dr. Fermi of the Hygienic Institute at Munich, Germany, has also made a number of tests, and during the course of the experiments it was found that the water became purified in about fifteen minutes, the organic substances being reduced by about one-half, and the suspended substances being precipitated to the bottom. The smell of the water was perceptibly improved. While the result of the tests show that the electricity does not at the present time realize the ideal of water purification, it has two great advantages ; first, that very little iron is precipitated, and its removal is not so difficult as in the case of purification by chemical means, and second, the dissolved organic substances, which are not precipitated by any of the known chemical methods hitherto employed, are at least partially removed by the electric current.