So, what is ozone, and how does it work to remove these dissolved organic molecules?
Ozone is a naturally occurring highly reactive form of oxygen gas comprised of three oxygen molecules (O3) that is also highly unstable and short lived. It is this inherent instability of the ozone molecule that is taken advantage of for use as a strong oxidizing agent. “Normal” oxygen, as found in air and water, has two oxygen molecules (O2) and is very stable. When ozone molecules break down, they lose an oxygen molecule, forming a stable “normal” oxygen molecule, and a free single oxygen atom. It is this free oxygen atom that attaches to dissolved organic compounds, which in turn causes them to break down into simpler forms that can consumed by heterotrophic bacteria , or recombine into forms that can be removed with mechanical filtration or protein skimming. The organic molecule that gained the free oxygen atom and subsequently broke apart is now said to be oxidized. This is a bit of an oversimplification of the process, but it is a about as general an explanation as I can give wit