(Featured image provided by cnn.com)
For 20 continuous years, humans have been on the ISS (International Space Station). Many of the technologies to help make astronauts’ life easier has also made ours better. For example, LED lights were originally used to help astronauts with sleep deprivation, and now they’re used most of the time for decoration. Specific weight lifting systems for astronauts in zero gravity have also found their way back home as workouts. There are many examples out there, and we may have just gotten one more.
On the ISS, every drop of moisture whether urine or sweat is recycled back into purified water. However, the current system is extremely heavy and has to be replaced every 90 days. A Danish company called Aquaporin developed a new system which uses a protein fittingly called, “Aquaporin.” This protein usually is what lets plants absorb water from roots, but if used with urine can filter about 45 gallons of fluid per day. It’s also very selective, and doesn’t let toxins or bacteria through. A study by BIOFOS (Denmark’s largest state-owned wastewater company) showed that Aquaporin’s system removes over 95% of all micropollutants and microplastics from contaminated water.
Now, the company wants to bring their invention to the market. Over two billion people across the globe don’t have access to clean drinking water, and over 50% of American households don’t trust tap water. That’s why Aquaporin has teamed up with BIOFOS and UTB Envirotec, to provide clean and safe drinking water.
“It has an enormous potential,” says BIOFOS innovation manager Dines Thornberg. “I think the Aquaporin system could lead the way in actually creating clean, affordable drinking water from wastewater in the future. I am really optimistic that we can meet the challenges of water scarcity in many parts of the world with technologies like this.”
Aquaporin has already launched an under-the-sink filter and plan to expand to other countries like the United States and China within the next two years.
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Or visit Aquaporin’s website here