Pedal faster, I'm thirsty!

Thursday, February 7, 2008 at 19:52

This is the winner of Google's Innovate or Die contest. It is a human-powered water carrying and filtering system. The current prototype obviously needs some work to be robust enough to survive the expected conditions of use, but there's definitely some good potential for this kind of device. I'm reminded of the treadle pumps used in many developing nations. Combine the two, and you have a complete human-powered system for retrieving, transporting and purifying water. It's not clear what kind of filtration system is being used in the Aquaduct project. Any form of physical filtration would eventually require replacement so supply of replacement filters would be an issue. An alternative would be to use a dynamo to power a MIOX type system. Then the only consumable in the system would be common salt. Presumably that would be easier to source than some commercially produced microfilter.

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