WatCleaner Robot Cleans Up Water Pollution

Published on July 9th, 2009 | by

Robots cleaning polluted water sounds futuristic? Not anymore.

Ye Yao, Chinese industrial designer, has designed a water cleaning device to combat the growing issue of where clean and potable water will come from. The WatCleaner, a new device created in the worldwide battle for clean water, is designed to automatically clean water.

Image by InstablogImagesWatCleaner in action
WatCleaner in action

The WatCleaner has detectors on the bottom that monitor water for pollution, everything from basic garbage to oil, and clean the water. Absorbent socks on the top of the WatCleaner absorb oil and cleanse it. Additionally, garbage is taken in and directed to a disintegrator- clean water is then sprayed through the top of the WatCleaner and returned to the water system. Along the way the WatCleaner also detects fish in order to clean the water in their area.

Beyond just cleaning the water of contaminants, the WatCleaner is also set up to transmit water condition information to land based controllers and ask for help if it encounters conditions too polluted to handle alone. As the WatCleaner takes on oil and garbage, the bin and oil bags can be removed and replaced.

The WatCleaner won an “Excellent Works” designation in the 2007 Japan Design Foundation International Design Competition.

Listen closely to the news about water or watch a movie like Blue Gold or Flow and it is easy to see that clean water is becoming a major issue around the world.

Dublin, Ireland was flooded this past week and authorities are estimating the damage to be millions of Euros in property damage. The city is currently contemplating an uprade to the River culvert to avoid future damage.

Beyond this immediate example, rivers and lakes around the world have water unsuitable for drinking, leading to countless cases of disease and death every year.

The issue of clean drinking water also hits home in the United States. Just last year a poll ranked pollution of drinking water as the top concern out of any water quality related environmental concern.

Systemic and large-scale solutions for providing clean drinking water are necessary, but technologies like the WatCleaner can offer immediate, on the ground solutions for dealing with clean drinking water issues.

For more information about the WatCleaner, visit the Japan Design Foundation International Design Competition listing for the WatCleaner.


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