Disinfecting harvested rainwater with the sun

  • Project Lead(s): Yu-Ling Cheng

    In coastal Bangladesh, as in many other places, rainwater is collected from rooftops and stored in large cisterns for use during the dry season (four to six months).  It is often contaminated during collection and microbes proliferate during storage, causing health problems for millions.  This Enhanced Solar Disinfection (eSODIS) project combines interventions in a novel way to minimize microbial growth during storage using sunlight, as well as treating the water using a small “just-in-time” solar-activated disinfection/dispensing module. Longer-term, the method may also offer a low-cost way to treat water that is contaminated with arsenic and select pesticides, both challenges that affect millions more in the developing world.