The Nano Membrane Toilet

Treating human waste onsite without external energy or water.

Cranfield University is developing the Nano Membrane Toilet which will be able to treat human waste on-site without external energy or water. The toilet is designed for single-household use (equivalent to 10 people) and will accept urine and faeces as a mixture. The toilet is still under development; this is the vision of how it will work: The toilet flush uses a unique rotating mechanism to transport the mixture into the toilet without demanding water whilst simultaneously blocking odour and the user’s view of the waste.

Solids separation (faeces) is principally accomplished through sedimentation. Loosely bound water (mostly from urine) is separated using low glass transition temperature hollow-fibre membranes. The unique nanostructured membrane wall facilitates water transport in the vapour state rather than as a liquid state which yields high rejection of pathogens and some odorous volatile compounds. A novel nano-coated bead enables water vapour recovery through encouraging the formation of water droplets at the nanobead surface. Once the droplets form a critical size, the water drains into a collection vessel for reuse at the household level in washing or irrigation applications.

Following release of unbound water, the residual solids (around 20-25% solids) are transported by mechanical screw into a gasifier which will convert them into ash and energy. The energy will power the membrane processes, and there may be extra energy for charging mobile phones or other low voltage items.

The toilet will be rented by the households and maintenance will be undertaken with a trained operative responsible for the franchised area.


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Component development and integration update

Development and integration of the Nano Membrane Toilet components is ongoing.   In the new toilet configuration faeces will settle to the bottom of the holding talk and urine will be removed from the top using a weir.  ...

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Posted 10th December 2014

Marking World Toilet Day in London and Barcelona

We were delighted to receive two invitations to talk about the toilet at World Toilet Day events.Firstly, WSUP hosted a showcase of sanitation research as part of their My Toilet  exhibition.   Jake Larsson gave a short talk about...

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Posted 24th November 2014

Highly Commended at the Green Gown Awards

We were delighted to be Highly Commended in the Research and Development category at the 2014 EAUC Green Gown Awards.   Alison and Ross attended the awards ceremony at Manchester University and were treated to a delicious organic ...

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Posted 6th November 2014

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