Safe Drinking Water For All - SDW

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Safe Drinking Water For All - SDW: Sustainable system of water disinfection

Salvador, BrazilSalvador, Brazil
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
Project Stage:
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

We of the SDW believe that we have the most affordable and durable system of water disinfection that is based in the solar light and is for those with lack of access of drinking water of the world available in the market.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if ... with the solution proposed here, the risk of millions of people contracting waterborne diseases is reduced and many lives would be saved by using a cheap and viable solution?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The project in question was proposed to face a issue: billions of people around the world, whether rural or urban areas, have poor access to drinking water or other treatment options for this as well as essential for their survival and end consuming water which can cause various diseases that lead to death. And, an integrated approach of providing water reduces the number of deaths caused by diarrheal diseases by an average of 65%...

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

The solution is the SDW, which is a simple reservoir for people without access to clean water. The current prototype is black glass fiber (with dimensions 50.0 cm x 50.0 cm x 5.0 cm) with 12 liter capacity and a transparent cover glass with a thickness of 4mm attached to a nanofilter on its water inlet . It works as follows: the user fills the tank with water, which passes through a nanofilter (optional when the water is transparent) and reduces turbidity and then is exposed to the sun for a few hours to UV and infrared rays of the sun are able to kill pathogenic microorganisms present in the water without any substance.


III Encontro de Jovens Cientistas, Unreasonable Lab, Prêmio Santander Universidades (top 150)
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Over 2.6 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation, mainly access to clean water. So with the SDW, a low-income solution, public may obtain drinking water without risk of contracting diseases carried by water and that is causing more than 2 million deaths every year, affecting mainly children under 5 years. The SDW is a highly durable system that can improve the lives of many people, with this unique disinfection system, more people will have their guaranteed right of access to drinking water. Emphasizing that the differential of SDW is the high durability of the system.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Until today it has been developed 3 different prototypes, and in the third, we already have an idea of how would be a hypothetical example. A person lives in a small house in a rural area semi-arid northeastern Brazil with her family, two adults and two children. The daily requirement of them is about 50 liters of water, but the only water they have access to is from a small lake, where animals bathe and has already proved to be highly contaminated. Then, in an initiative of a private company / government / NGO this family, like many others, benefits from a reservoir of 50 liters which has a small filter treatment able to improve the aesthetics and water quality as well as help in the main proceedings: the elimination of pathogens present in this water using only sunlight. Now the health of the family has improved.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

The expansion of this project will take place in two parts: international distribution and creation of automated versions. In the first part, the partnership with a factory in China for all logistics of SDW is made there and the cost of production and delivery to customers in the regions of Asia and Africa will be reduced. In the second part, more further, like in 3 years, different types of SDW will be created for other markets, such as people who have running water but they know the high degree of re-contamination thereof to pass through the pipes on the way to the residence them.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Initially, in the first six months, all obtained profit will be invested in the project itself, with the addition of more skilled people and a production broad more effective scale, after which the profit will be higher and will help keep the increase in operating costs and the rest will be divided between the partners.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

There are some NGOs and businesses with social initiatives acting internationally by investing in various projects that aims to bring clean water to communities in Africa and Asia, especially, but with little grip in Brazil, and that has a big problem: low durability solutions and require large amounts of maintenance, therefore, many people continue to use the contaminated water because they have no other options or water solutions lose their effectiveness over time.

Founding Story

The SDW was founded in 2013, in the international year of cooperation for water, when, with 15 years old, the founder Anna Luisa noticed the large size that is the problem with the lack of clean water in many regions of the world and, so she started to understand the existing solutions in the market and why this situation has not yet improved so far. The journey was difficult, she didn't find any structural support. None of this discouraged her: in the first six months, two prototypes were created and analyzed in a superficial way (since it had no assistance of a lab) until the creation of the third and final prototype in late 2014. My effectiveness was based on a likely method called SODIS.


My team consists of me, Anna Luisa, undergraduate in Biotechnology, which devotes full time to create the company and have administrative functions, and some employees in different areas, such as Sanitary and Environmental Engineering (responsible for the research) and a Graphic Designer (responsible for creating the brand), a lawyer (responsible for legal issues of the patent) and an Industrial Engineering, which helps in the administrative part.
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