It is estimated that one in nine people globally lack access to safe water. Michigan State University researchers are looking to fill that critical need and provide safe drinking water to the most remote locations in the world with a new foam water filter that significantly reduces dangerous pathogens in drinking water.
"The foam filter is the first of its kind to address a wide range of the biological and economic factors that hinder development of remote water filtration systems," said Joan Rose, Homer Nowlin Chair in water research and author of the study. "This filter is easier to use and more effective than traditional methods."
Published in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, the study examined a multibarrier biofilm foam filter, designed and manufactured by Amway, as a low-cost alternative to existing household filtration methods.
"The foam filter combines existing water treatment principles and is evidence that conventional municipal water treatment processes can be reinvented into a small, light and portable system," Rose said.
The filter features a unique biological layer, which allows organisms within the foam to attack foreign pathogens as water passes through. Growth of 'friendly' microorganisms in this layer enable the filter to become more efficient at reducing protozoa, bacteria and viruses over time. The newly discovered material also has other advantages such as ease of use, maintenance and affordability.
Many existing filtration methods do not effectively reduce microbial levels and can be complex to use and tedious to maintain. Communities that take ownership of water supply maintenance and sustainability successfully become invested in that supply, according to Rose.
"An entire community is affected by the quality of their water," Rose said. "A disease outbreak among members may be traced back to the water source, so the methods these communities rely on need to be effective and sustainable."
Next steps for the filter include field studies at the Crow Reservation in Montana, and in a small village outside of Tamale in Ghana. Ongoing research on the foam filter will be conducted by a collaborative multi-institutional research team with members from MSU, Montana State University, University of Arizona and University of North Carolina.
Funding for this study and future work with the filter is provided by Amway, a global direct selling company based in Ada, Michigan.
Also contributing to the study were Christopher Wendt, Program in Public Health, MSU; Rebecca Ives, and Stephanie Longstaff, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, MSU; Anne Hoyt, Ken Conrad, and Roy Kuennen from Amway.
Mackenzie Kastl | EurekAlert!
Inflammation Triggers Unsustainable Immune Response to Chronic Viral Infection
24.10.2016 | Universität Basel
Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
24.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences