What is MBC?

Magnetic Ballast Clarification (MBC) is a high rate clarification system that removes suspended solids from water. With ballast clarification, fine particles are attached to a heavy material such as sand with a flocculating polymer.  This makes the particles heavier and therefore they settle quicker in water.  The quicker the particle settles the smaller the clarification equipment.

MBC replaces sand ballast with a material that is ferromagnetic (meaning the material can be made magnetic and/or interacts strongly with a magnet).  The most cost effective material, which exhibits a strong attraction to a magnet, is magnetite.

Magnetite is the favored magnetic ballast because:

  • Low cost

  • Non-toxic

  • Strongly ferromagnetic

  • Fully oxidized (will not rust in water)

  • Readily available

  • High specific gravity (5.3)


MBC has the following three elements:

  • Flocculation

  • Magnetic separation

  • Magnetic ballast cleaning

Click on the following green links to learn more about MBC:

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