When you are in the city, you have a lot of choices to get access to drinking water. Imagine yourself however, in a deep jungle where you are living along with say, another 30-40 families, without any electricity, without any proper sanitation, basic amenities or any such facilities that we take for granted in cities.
Could The Solar Water Purifier Be The Answer?
It could actually be so. Water purification with the help of solar water purifier is based on a very simple concept and requires little infrastructure to implement it even in the most primitive situations. In Africa people fill up the bottles with water from whichever water sources they have and the leave them in the sun, usually against some type of dark or black background. Then, these water bottles would be left about eight hours in the sun during which time, the water reaches about 50 degrees Centigrade which makes it safe to drink.
When the sun is stronger, the water could be ready to drink within 2-4 hours from time they are exposed to the sun. These primitive solar water purifiers could not be any simpler. As a matter of fact, this model of solar water purifier has already been tried and tested in many remote villages of Africa with great results.
In similar circumstances, in India, there is another model of solar water purifier used. This consists of large, open mouth earthen pots which are kept covered with a thin muslin cloth in the sun for the same period as the bottles in Africa, i.e. 4-8 hours. The wide mouth ensures that the water gets heated fast, while the muslin cloth keeps the dust and other impurities away from the water.
There is no modern solar water purifier in the market yet, but I am sure we might see a prototype or two in the near future. The fact that the solar batteries and their installation were prohibitively expensive was the major deterrent for their large scale application in cities. Now, with the development of cheaper, lighter and easier to install solar battery sets, it is hoped that the modern technology will be able to use more of this untapped energy which is almost inexhaustible.
The solar water purifier would be a boon anywhere in the world. In primitive areas, it will protect the people from deadly water-born diseases such as cholera, typhoid, dysentery and diarrhea; in modern cities it would protect the people from pollution and town related contaminations.