The Difference Between Pasteurization, Boiling and Distillation

You will find discussions on the internet about pasteurizing water in emergency situations. In this article I want to clear up any confusion between boiling and pasteurization, and compare both methods to distillation.

Let’s start by comparing boiling and pasteurization. While there are some similarities, they are not at all the same. They both involve heating water, but the difference is the temperature to which water is heated and the length of time it is held at a specific temperature.

Humans have been boiling substances much longer than we have been pasteurizing substances. To my knowledge, no one person has been credited with discovering the process of boiling, though many have studied it. Let’s just give credit to early man or God since there are some examples of boiling in nature. The process of pasteurization, on the other hand, is named after a famous French chemist Louis Pasteur. He did much of his research pasteurizing wine and is also famous for anthrax and much other germ-related research. Pasteur is the one most responsible for the germ theory for infectious disease.


Boiling, according to Wikipedia, is defined as “the process of heating a liquid substance until there is a rapid vaporization of a liquid.” This occurs when a liquid is heated to a specific temperature referred to its boiling point. At this temperature, the vapor pressure (tendency to evaporate) of the liquid is equal to the pressure exerted on the liquid by the surrounding atmosphere to not evaporate.

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The Proper Way to Collect Rain Water in an Emergency

In an emergency, collecting rain water can be a very useful way to get pure, safe drinking water. However, there are some things you need to know to ensure its safety.

First, let’s look closer at rainwater. Rain is the source of all fresh water on the planet, including lakes, rivers, streams, glaciers and underground reservoirs. For the most part (I’ll explain in a minute), rain is very pure water.


So where does rain come from? Most rain starts as highly contaminated ocean water.

Ocean water contains high levels of salt and other contaminants. Ocean water is basically poison to us, thus a person stuck on a raft at sea will often die of dehydration. So how does this water turn into high-purity rain water?

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