[image credit: wickedlocal.com]
Many people lack clean water, despite plentiful rain
Across the globe, more than 1 billion people lack access to clean drinking water. Many walk 20 to 30 miles a day to retrieve water in plastic cans.
Solution: Build solar-powered rainwater filtration systems in each village
Grant and Tringale, now 22 years old, spent last summer developing the first prototype of the Waterport, a solar-powered filtration system that can transform one inch of rainwater into 120 gallons of purified water.
The Waterport system consists of a roof that collects rainwater through pipes. That rainwater then travels through two different filters, first passing through a sediment filter of sand, gravel and charcoal.
“It’s like a big fish tank filter,” explained Grant. “It makes sure there’s no dirt or debris. The charcoal also reduces any carbon or odor that could be in the water.”
The initially filtered water then passes into a barrel containing an ultraviolet filter, powered by a solar panel affixed to the structure. The result, Grant says, is water with a purity rate of 99.9 percent.
Waterport costs about $2,000 for the raw materials to build each unit. Grant believes the primary clients for this product would likely be non-governmental organizations and local governments in impoverished areas of the world.