Turning rainwater into drinking water
Summary of Big Idea
Every two minutes, a child dies due to waterborne diseases. Aqualuz is a UN-recognized device that costs only US$125,00 and will reduce that problem. This is through a rainwater-harvesting system from the semi-arid areas of Brazil, but with potential for application in other countries. Applying the UNICEF and WHO recommended principle of solar water disinfection, we have developed Aqualuz, the only technology in the world for cisterns, which only needs sunlight to make rainwater suitable for consumption. It is a validated technology in the field, with many advantages compared to competitors including clay filter, chlorination and water boiling. The system can last up to 20 years and its components can be recycled; it is easy to maintain and clean using water and soap, and the indicator that changes colour when water is ready. Our technology is also low-cost, and in Brazil alone can serve more than 1.2 million families with existing cisterns. No chemical component harmful to health or nature are used, with the negative impact of chlorine use on water replaced by sunlight. We have already impacted more than 150 people with access to drinking water, and plan to reach 700 people by the end of 2019.
Since 2013, I have been creating innovative and sustainable technologies for water treatment and solid waste management. I founded the startup “Safe Drinking Water for All,” in 2015 to develop a technology that I started when I was 15. In addition to SDW, I am a Young Water Fellow and developing a bio-digester for urban houses, to generate biogas to supply them.