Learn more about these inspiring inventions that are making H2O more accessible to all, one drop at a time.
1. Billboard that filters water
In Lima, Peru there is a lot of desert and a large amount of people without potable water. As an advertisement to encourage students to enroll at Lima’s University of Engineering and Technology, this billboard captures moisture from the air and puts it through a reverse osmosis system, turning it into drinking water which is then stored in 20L tanks. The ingenious design takes advantage of the atmospheric humidity of almost 98%, to counter the dangerously low annual rainfall.
This portable drinking straw, created Vestergaard, filters dirty water making it safe for drinking. The lightweight straw purifies a minimum of 1000 liters (264 gallons) of water, and removes 99.9% of bacteria and parasites. For every LifeStraw purchased, a school child in a developing country is provided with safe drinking water for an entire school year through their program Follow the Liters.
3. Hippo water roller project
In rural Africa, women spend 26% of their time collecting and transporting water to their homes. The arduous task is time-consuming and the taxing physical labor later leads to health problems. While there is a ways to go before clean water faucets are installed in homes, the Hippo Water Roller is a simple solution that alleviates the task of collecting water. Designed by two South Africans, the Hippo Water Roller can carry up to 90 liters, lasts seven years or more, and is also a clean way to store the collected water. To date, more than 44,000 Hippo rollers have been distributed in South Africa and 20 other African countries.
This low-tech solution harnesses the power of the sun to purify and desalinate water, and it’s super simple to use. Salty or brackish water is poured into the black pan and the cone is placed on top – absorbing the sunlight. The water begins to evaporate and condensate into droplets in the inner wall of the cone. Once all the water has evaporated, the cap on top of the cone is unscrewed and clean water can be poured into a bottle. The nifty contraption is ideal for people who live in hot sunny climates, and can even double as a hygienic fruit and fish drier or as a collector funnel for harvesting rain during monsoon seasons.
5. Drinkable book
The nonprofit WaterIsLife created a book with pages that can purify water. Each page of the book is coated with silver nanoparticles, which kill 99.9% of the bacteria passing through them – resulting in safe drinking water. Once a page of the book has been torn out, it can be used multiple times as a filter, providing a long-lasting sustainable water purification system. Even more impressive – the book educates readers about water hygiene and provides useful tips about sanitation and safe water habits.
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