At the Reinvent the Toilet Fair held last week in Seattle, the engineers demonstrated a self-contained, solar-powered, electrochemical waste treatment system meant to overcome challenges in water, sanitation and hygiene in developing countries. Clean flush toilets require a lot of infrastructure and fresh water, and nearly 40% of the world's population has access to neither, according to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The team at Caltech spent a year building their prototypes for a Western-style toilet, squat toilet, and urinal. Their innovation won them the grand prize in a $40 million program initiated by the Gates Foundation, which aims to improve health through safe sanitation.
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Via NBC Los Angeles
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(Image and video: Caltech/Michael Hoffmann)