Can sugar fuel a clean water supply?

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Offline thedoc

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Can sugar fuel a clean water supply?
« on: 23/05/2011 21:45:39 »
Scientists have developed a sugar-fuelled chemical filter to clean up contaminated water.

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« Last Edit: 23/05/2011 21:45:39 by _system »


Offline CliffordK

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Can sugar fuel a clean water supply?
« Reply #1 on: 23/05/2011 22:31:01 »
Interesting, although I'm not convinced that it is any better than the standard sand, micro-porous, & charcoal filter systems.

What is the actual contamination problem with 3rd world water supplies?

Chemicals?  Biologicals?  Both?

I can imagine some little bugs encountering it...  sugar + protein  =  excellent growth medium!!!

I'm trying to figure out why water contamination is so much different between the USA and the 3rd world.

I think part of it is different sanitary water system and waste standards.

Here, municipal systems filter and chlorinate the fresh water, and treat the waste water.

Rural water is predominantly well water & septic systems.  I'm not sure about all the standards, but fresh water and waste water has to be kept separate.  Wells are licensed, and must include about 20 feet of casing which in effect isolates surface water (potential for contamination) from deep water (generally sterile, or free from "human" bacteria).  And the casing is grouted in place to prevent water from traveling down the outside of the casing.

Septic systems use a tank for biologic degradation, and liquid waste is disposed undergound.  Solid waste settles to the bottom of the tank.

So...  the best approach is likely to convince the 3rd world countries to start making clean wells and sanitary septic systems for their rural populations, and to filter and treat the urban water, and build waste treatment facilities. 

Yes, it is probably a tall order, but preventing contamination would be a big step.