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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The Nano Membrane Toilet receives further funding

We are delighted to announce that the Nano Membrane Toilet has received further funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to continue the development of the toilet.   This next phase will take us to January 2016 when we w...

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Posted 18th September 2014

Reinvent the Toilet Phase 1. Design Team progress photos.

Created with flickr slideshow.As we have now reached the end of Phase one the Design Team wanted to show some snaps of the project as it's developed over the course of the year.This album shows primary research in Ghana, early idea gen...

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Posted 17th September 2014

Partnerships

We’d like to take an opportunity to acknowledge and thank the partners we’ve worked with so far on the Nano Membrane Toilet.   They’ve all done exceptional work.   Model Products worked built the technical 'works-like' rig t...

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Posted 15th September 2014

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