The team behind Cranfield University’s Nano Membrane Toilet have won two awards at the 2018 International Water Association (IWA) Project Innovation Awards in Tokyo. Image: Cranfield University

Nano Membrane Toilet team scoop world water innovation awards

The team behind Cranfield University’s Nano Membrane Toilet has won two awards at the 2018 International Water Association (IWA) Project Innovation Awards in Tokyo.

Awarded biennially, the Project Innovation Awards recognise and promote excellence and innovation in water management, research and technology.

The first award was the Kiran and Pallavi Patel Grand Innovation Award. This recognised outstanding examples of innovation in the water sector. The second was the Gold award in the ‘Breakthroughs in Research and Development’ category.

Dr Alison Parker, Lecturer in International Water and Sanitation at Cranfield University, said:

“We are absolutely delighted to be recognised in this way and it is a credit to everyone who is working on the project.”

The Nano Membrane Toilet is being developed in response to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s ‘Reinvent the Toilet Challenge’. The challenge was to develop a toilet that provides a safe sanitation solution for the developing world, at minimal cost to the user.

Many areas which lack access to this basic need also have non-existent or unreliable water, sewage and electricity supplies.

The waste is treated on-site and taken away

Cranfield’s solution is able to treat human waste on-site without external energy or water. It is then safely transported away and potentially reused.

Dr Alison Parker said:

“Far too many people across the world live without access to basic sanitation. We hope the work we are doing will provide a solution that will keep people healthy and promote clean environments.”

The Nano Membrane Toilet recently featured on the latest series of the BBC’s ‘Inside the Factory’.