Focus-Science and Technology - - Q&A -

EV­ERY YEAR, OVER 3.4 mil­lion peo­ple die from prob­lems as­so­ci­ated with wa­ter, hy­giene and san­i­ta­tion. It’s a huge prob­lem, be­cause the vast ma­jor­ity of in­di­vid­u­als who live in ar­eas with dirty wa­ter don’t even re­alise that it’s un­safe to drink.

To try to solve the is­sue, Dr Theresa Dankovich cre­ated a spe­cial type of bac­te­ri­ade­stroy­ing fil­ter pa­per for her PhD at McGill Univer­sity. She’s now based at Carnegie Mel­lon and has teamed up with sci­en­tists from her cur­rent institution and the Univer­sity of Vir­ginia to cre­ate The Drink­able Book.

Once wa­ter has been passed through a page of the book, it comes out on the other side with a 99.9 per cent re­duc­tion in bac­te­ria, which makes it com­pa­ra­ble to tap wa­ter in the USA.

It works be­cause each page is coated with sil­ver nanopar­ti­cles, which are ca­pa­ble of de­stroy­ing bac­te­rial diseases such as E. coli, ty­phoid and cholera. Each fil­ter can of­fer 30

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