Water on wheels

The Artdog Image(s) of Interest 

Nippon Basic founder Yuichi Katsuura demonstrates
the Cycloclean bike-mounted water purifier.

During “Social Justice February” I’ve been looking at innovative ways to deliver safe, clean, affordable water to populations that need it. 

The United Nations recognizes access to good water as a basic human right–and it isn’t only in developing nations where it’s a problem.

Remember Flint, MI, where problems with lead contamination in the water will unfortunately continue to be an issue for several more years.

Providing good water in times of disaster is a particular challenge, and that was the spur for innovation that created the Cycloclean, a product of the Nippon Basic Co., Ltd. It’s a kinetic water-purifier mounted on a bicycle.

How does it work? Well, first of all, it can go anywhere you can ride (or push) a bicycle, so it’s pretty portable. It uses no gasoline or other fuel (except pedal-power), so it’s entirely eco-friendly (though possibly not so leg-friendly).

Park it next to a water source, insert the hose, then prop up the bike on its stand (one website called them the bike’s “crutches,”) and hop on for some vigorous pedaling.

This pumps the water up the hose, into the purification filters, and out to whatever catch-vessel you have–cans, jars, or maybe one of last week’s Hippo Water Rollers.

The biggest drawback to the Cycloclean right now is its price. Though it varies from country to country, it costs several thousand dollars for one unit. So far, the main customers have been local Japanese governments, especially in mountain villages. But the company also has been expanding into Bangladesh and elsewhere, and prices are coming down.

IMAGES: Many thanks to InfoHeaps, for the photo of Katsuura on the Cycloclean and the “Simple Overview” diagram. The close-up of the filters on the bike is courtesy of The Rakyat Post, via BaikBike, and the side-view of the bike with the unit mounted on it is from the Leonard J Kovar’s Self Sufficiency Off-the-Grid Survival post “Cool Water Purification Gadgets,” which also features the LifeStraw. Thanks very much to all!

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jansgephardt

Kansas City-based Jan S. Gephardt is a writer, artist, and teacher. She makes nationally-recognized paper sculpture and writes sf mystery novels about a sapient police dog.

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