Eco Factor: Low-cost water disinfection system powered by solar energy.
The idea of using solar energy for purifying water has been around for ages and is still practiced in different parts of the globe. However now a team of students from the University of Washington have come up with a bright idea taking a little bit of technical help to devise a low-cost solution to a global problem. Using simple parts the student team has developed a cheap setup solution for drinking water in poor areas which has won them a $40000 prize.
The team reports that using parts from a keychain that blinks in response to light they have created a device that monitors how light is passing through a water-filled bottle and how many particulates are obstructing the light. When enough particulates are removed the sensor alerts that the water is now safe to drink. The student team believes that the device can be retailed at just $3.40 which makes it a viable solution for many parts of the world.