How It Works:
The Vulcan uses precisely calibrated electronic impulses to alter the structure of the minerals in the water, converting them from bristly molecules into smooth rods. The minerals are still there, but they do not stick to things. Nothing is added to the water, and nothing is taken away. That’s the simplest explanation. Please read on if you are interested in the more technical explanation or click to jump down to a helpful video created by the manufacturer of the Vulcan.
The hardness in water comes from calcium carbonate (CaCO3) and magnesium carbonate (MgCO3) deposits in the ground that the water flows through. For the sake of this discussion, calcium carbonate will be used as the focus but the same principles apply to magnesium carbonate.
Calcium carbonate is not soluble in water, but water containing carbon dioxide (CO2) can form carbonic acid (H2CO3) which reacts with the calcium carbonate to form calcium hydrogen carbonate, Ca(HCO3)2. This form is dissolved in the water and can travel along to be pumped up by a well. There is a fragile balance between calcium carbonate and carbonic acid that determines whether the dissolved form is stable or converts back to an insoluble crystalline form.
As previously mentioned, Vulcan water treatment operates via electronic impulses transmitted from the control unit along the impulse bands that are wrapped around the pipe. The control unit sends out an alternating current with a constantly variable frequency ranging from 3 to 32 kHz. When the frequency resonates with the water molecules that surround the ions of the dissolved minerals, it causes them to break away and frees these ions. This allows the calcium carbonate to reform surrounded by an area of water with less carbon dioxide and with no hard surface to attach to. The wide range of frequencies ensures that resonance is achieved regardless of the variations in water characteristics.
Vulcan water treatment results in rod-shaped crystals that do not form scale and also causes an increased concentration of carbonic acid which works to dissolve the more bristly and reactive crystals that have already attached to surfaces.
For further details, click to access a paper by Dr. Jünke titled Physical Water Treatment Paper by Dr. Junke.