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Post from Holocene 911*

Holocene 911* | Projects | Family Filter | Portfolio

  •         In this studio, we were tasked with coming up with a solution to combat climate change.  There were a few different aspects that we researched in the beginning, but in the end I decided to focus on the world's water issue.  I decided to create an affordable filter that desalinates water.  I was really interested in this idea because the concept of water has always fascinated me, and I know how big of a problem it is becoming.  Before beginning to prototype the filter, I knew I wanted it to be under $10 so low income families could afford it.  I also knew that I wanted it to let out zero emissions.  With this criteria in mind, I began designing my filter.

            There are three layers to the system.  A strainer to remove the bigger clumps of things, a ceramic filter to take out the live bacteria, and a sheet of graphene to desalinate the water.  The is also a bike pump attached to the top in order to pressurize the system.  Unfortunately, the nanoporous graphene is still being designed, so I was not able to incorporate that aspect into my design.

            The filter took about a week to make.  This stems from a myriad of reasons: the parts I ordered took a long time to be delivered, things broke or did not fit, and various engineering problems arose during the building process.  In the end, however, my prototype was able to filter a dirty puddle from the street into clean water (which somebody then drank).

            After the process of building was over, I realized there are a lot of technical and mechanical components that contribute in the building of the seemingly smallest things.  Although the prototype I made does not do its purpose of desalinating water, it does clean the water.  I think this is a good first step, and when the nanoporous graphene comes into full scale production the filter will do its proper job of desalination.  For now, I am very pleased that I was able to build a relatively inexpensive prototype (I estimated it cost around $15-$20).