US tech company builds sewage treatment machine to extract clean drinking water from human waste
Waste Reduction

Improper sewage treatment is a serious threat to global health – it may often result in water pollution and waterborne disease transmission. In light of this, US based Janicki Industries has built the OmniProcessor, a low cost machine that extracts clean drinking water from human wastes, providing a new safe way for developing countries to handle their sewage.

The OmniProcessor relies on steam and filtration to produce not only potable water and but also electricity. The machine works by first delivering sewage sludge through heating and drying systems, which evaporates the water from the sludge into vapor. This vapor is then pumped and processed through filtration systems, until it enters a condensation chamber as potable, clean water. Meanwhile, the sludge which has been dried of moisture is then sent to a furnace, where the steam generated from incineration serves as fuel for power generation – this means the OmniProcessor is actually energy positive. The detoxified ash resultant of the incineration may also serve as fertilizer. According to the Janicki Industries, the OmniProcessor's S100 model can handle up to a daily 12.3 cubic meters of sewage, producing up to 10,800 liters of clean drinking water in compliance with US FDA and World Health Organization standards.

The project is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, with developing countries in mind. According to The Conversation, there are currently 2.1 billion urban residents around the world using facilities with improper sewage treatment, while up to 1.5 million children die each year from contaminated food and water. Bill Gates himself paid Janicki Industries a field visit to personally try the water produced from the OmniProcessor. “If you can get thousands of these things out there, then you’ve ensured the people really will grow up in a healthy way,” said Gates. “They’ll live much higher quality lives. You will save a lot of lives. And you’ll have local entrepreneurs who are maintaining these things.”

The world is on the brink of facing a water shortage crisis. If Hong Kong starts to promote drinking water made by OmniProcessor, would you try it?


Sources:Planet Experts, The Conversation