Mehaa- Let's save the world one drop at a time
My name is Mehaa Amirthalingam. This is my first blog post and I am so excited for these next few months of preparing for the final event. I will be working with Dr. Jen Hanson on improving my project over the summer with the main objective of spreading awareness about water conservation.
Everyone should drink at least 2 liters of water everyday and that alone is a challenging task for many around the world due to their lack of water available to them. In places like the US, we really do not face issues related to a lack of water, but at the same time water scarcity is not a unfamiliar issue . Do you remember the drought that hit California a few years back? I remember that some friends of mine had to remove the dead grass from their backyard and had to install artificial grass due to a ban that restricts citizens from watering their lawns in California.
As I was researching and reading about various techniques to conserve water, the use of greywater in toilets seemed really intereseting to me. I was wondering why people don't already use grey water in their toilets. After much more research, I realized that researchers tried to solve the problem with fancy ideas with automatic valves with intelligent sensors to switch between grey water an fresh water, etc. There should not be a need for any maintenance and should work anywhere even without electricity. The toilet flushing mechanism was invented in 1592 and the basic design did not change too much because the design was simple and robust. If we want to use grey water in toilets, then the toilet flushing system should be as simple as it is now.
Most traditional toilets use the big ball float that goes up and down when the water is filled and drained respectively. If you look at some of the new toilet flushing systems they use coaxial floats. My idea is to use a coaxial float flushing system and create a design that can use both fresh and grey water but that saves more water than a flushing system that uses 50% grey water and 50% freshwater. I looked at the roles of the valves in a toilet flushing system and that's when I got my idea for my flushing system. I have introduced the basic idea of my system in my submission video, but it needs to be elegant and robust to work nicely in an industrial scale.
I know 3M has more than 24,000 products in the market and I want to choose from various plastic raw materials and moulded parts to construct my final prototype. I can't wait to start my summer mentorship.
Be sure to look out for my other posts! Thank you!