Student Develops Filter for Clean Drinking Water to Be Used around the World

Filter For Clean Drinking Water

ETH student Jeremy Nussbaumer set himself the goal of a contribution to solving the clean drinking water problem that affects people around the world. The 23-year-old spent a year researching a membrane filter and developing a prototype, working with researchers from a group led by Wendelin Stark, head of the Functional Materials Laboratory.

Roughly 780 million people around the world have no access to clean drinking water and, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), 3.4 million people die from water-related diseases every year. Nussbaumer’s invention is ideal for development aid projects.

How Does It Work?

Called DrinkPure, the filter’s uniqueness is best represented by the fact that the filter can be screwed on to virtually any plastic bottle. “It does not require a pump or a reservoir, so it is very easy to use,” explains the student from the canton of Aargau. “You simply screw the filter onto a bottle containing polluted water, then you can put it straight in your mouth and take a drink.” The advantages of DrinkPure include:

  • weighs less than 100 grams
  • provides a high flow pressure
  • possibility of purifying as much as 1L of water per minute
  • less expensive
  • easier to manufacture

What Makes DrinkPure One of the Most Reliable Devices on the Market?

The filter features 3 filtering stages. The first pre-filter captures large particles, such as sand and plant fragments; the second stage consists of an activated charcoal powder that removes odors and chemical contaminants; the third and most important part of the filter is a special polymer membrane that removes bacteria. Nussbaumer says this membrane does its job more reliably than virtually any other water filter intended for outdoor use.

The membrane was developed by two ETH doctoral students and patented three years ago. Since then, the polymer membrane has been used in a wide range of applications. The manufacturing process that the membrane is based on shows great potential.

Sending First Filters to Africa next January

The research team is currently looking for financial support in order to manufacture enough filters to use in developing countries. The proceeds will be used to purchase the tools needed for the manufacturing process. 80% of what is left over will be used to produce the filter and transport it to Africa and 20% to further develop the concept, as Nussbaumer declared. The first completed filters are expected in January 2015 and will be sent to project supporters and to Africa for use in a test phase.

About Dime Water

As a full line water treatment manufacturer, we specialize in nanofiltration, reverse osmosis, custom applications and equipment. We utilize virtually all known water treatment processes in solving problems for our customers, assuring the customer of the most economical and environmentally friendly solution. Call us at 760.734.5787 and talk with one of our water purification experts today!


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