Nanotechnological waterless toilet
Scientists at Cranfield University in Britain are developing a toilet that does not need water, a sewage system or external power but instead uses nanotechnology to treat human waste, produce clean water and keep smells at bay.Nanotechnology is the science of creating and working with materials about one nanometre wide, or one-billionth of a metre.The toilet is part of the global “Reinvent the toilet Challenge” funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.Alison Parker, lead researcher on the project revealed that once the waste is in the holding chamber we use membranes that take water out as vapour, which can then be condensed and available for people to use in their homes.The pathogens remain in the waste at the bottom of the holding chamber, so the water is basically pure and clean.Parker added Dr Parker that despite “significant” interest from developed countries, the toilet is being designed with those in mind who have no access to adequate toilets.From Africa’s perspective, this new development will come in handy.Many households and high-rise buildings use modern flush toilets with the tanks, a method which is believed to waste more water.The continuous supply of water to has been a problem in many parts of the world for very long time. In African countries, dry seasons usually bring water crises, while floods ruin large parts of the continent during the rainy season.The video below shows how Nanotechnological waterless toilet works.
On average, water operators across the continent aren’t even able only to supply 20 percent of the demand in cities, many residents depend on already polluted groundwater to make up the shortfall.If successful, the use of these technology in toilets will help reduce pollution levels in groundwater in Africa as long as the waterless toilets use inexpensive materials and require no electricity as the cost of energy in the continent is expensive. Cranfield University said its toilet is designed for a household of up to 10 people and will cost just $US0.05 per day per user. The plan is to have a replaceable bag containing solid waste coated with a biodegradable nano-polymer which blocks odour will be collected periodically by a local operator.Initial field testing of the toilet are expected to take place later this year.The obstacle in Africa will be to change people’s perception of the toilets.It is a continent where majority still think toilets are a dirty facility that needs to go in the backyard.It is a promising solution that will definitely prevent a water crisis around the world. To cope with water crisis, it is not only important to enact educational programs for the public about how to conserve water and consume less water and about the need to recycle and reuse water and also to run education programs about proper hygiene and sanitation but also its critical to develop technology that can be helpful.Am looking forward to the testings later this year.