SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Tue, 31 Mar 2015 23:52:23 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: Low-cost sanitation for emergencies - Aerosan in New Delhi - by: Andrew
Thanks for your comments! The bags are made of the same material as the cubicles--the used vinyl billboard fabric. In the ones in Haiti they were somewhat large (1.5 m3) with the idea that the first part of the composting would occur at the toilet site. In practice, we found that it was better to compost everything at a secondary site and so we moved the partially full bags of the five arrays in operation (5 toilets per array) and set that up. It's not ideal and moving the material was difficult. Having the toilet superstructures be moved back and forth onto two bins (like a giant fossa alterna) was the idea, but it was harder to do in practice than we had originally thought. So the Haiti toilets are still functioning and not filling very fast (due to a level of composting which is decreasing volume even if it's not performing the hygienization process that we want), so they are working but the emptying of those systems remains a challenge. We are working on a different design which will be for single toilet units and which will be much easier to handle as far as maintenance is concerned.

I like the cylindrical approach as well--there are a lot of structural benefits to building them that way. We have only built these ones you see in the videos for the Delhi show. We are looking at going to single units and will be emphasizing the pack-ability/ship-ability issue, but I don't have a video of that. My new idea has us going away from the cylinders (at least for the moment) for a few reasons. Not sure how that will work out at the moment, but I feel like we have some good ideas.

The flexible strips for the walls were a problem in the India units--we had used masonite, which I didn't like, but it worked for the time being. I want to use strips cut from the 2 x 4s and am experimenting with that a bit.

We do not have a tech guide as of yet in Kreyol.

The rate of filling was one of the pleasant surprises to us--we found that they just weren't filling up and when we went to look at them 9 months after initial set-up, they were not full then, but we changed out the bags anyway, as described above. The thing is, I think there is a fair amount of volume loss due to the decomposition like you say, and I would like to be able to quantify that at some point.

As far as temperature monitoring, we did that while we were living in Cite Soleil with our own compost pile and found that we could regularly get temperatures over 70 C. We turned our compost often and experienced the spike at least 5 times before it gradually decreased. We were composting in Vodrey (our village) on the edge of Cite Soleil.

And yes, SOIL we know very well--Sasha and her team have made a ton of progress as far as promoting composting as a treatment method for sanitation. GiveLove, with whom I've also worked, has done a lot in that area as well.

Sorry for the late reply--I am not checking these posts often enough! Please feel free to ask anything else. There are some things about our design that I'm not satisfied with, and I think that's why I'm still trying some new ideas. The one thing I can say that I think we have a better handle on is the building style using wood and billboard fabric with each iteration. Each time we build something from these materials we learn more about how to perfect the building style itself--which is separate from all the process stuff, but a necessary part of a low-cost humanitarian solution.


User interface technology innovations Thu, 12 Mar 2015 03:33:49 +0000
Re: Much improved Wikipedia page on composting toilets - by: chuckhenry
Yes, I totally agree about EA-X being a hybrid. AS you know, fairly rapid composting takes place at solids percentages between 40-60; composting definitely takes place while being mixed and moved through the horizontal tube. And it's easy to tell, as the material that comes out the end has a typical musty odor of rich earth rather than a fecal smell. But drying definitely occurs as well, with end material varying between a low of 30% and a high of 90% - this is presumably dependent upon number of users and effectiveness of the urine diverter.

Air gets into the pipe via the black vent tube - as solar radiation heats up the tube, air is drawn upwards and out. as the toilet seat is not totally air tight, air enters from there and passes through the horizontal tube.

In the US I test all versions at my home in the mountains outside of Seattle. Currently I have three still available for use! EA-X is my current toilet of choice as it's attached to my house!

Then, an organization in Oregon is in the process of developing a "Go & Grow" concept - where EA-X is the centering point of a greenhouse - the 'compost' and urine/greywater is used for edible garden crops. They have four toilets.

Also, my wife and I were recently written up in the University of Washington Columns magazine
That has stirred a fair amount of interest from UW alumni and we've gotten a number of requests for toilets in our area in the US. Our plan is to choose three local sites (in addition Go & Grow) for extensive monitoring for certification of the toilet.

Why Cambodia, Nepal and South Africa in particular? Opportunity! Live and Learn from Cambodia has long been interested in the EA - because my wife and I had the conference in Hanoi (and our partner Roger joined us) we each carried a toilet US-Vietnam-Cambodia and had a wonderful visit/installation to the Angkor World Heritage site.

In South Africa, as mentioned earlier in a post, we were invited as one of five technologies for large-scale demonstration. This project may start in June this year. In Nepal we were asked to co propose for a small ADB grant that was approved, but not yet started.

The fate of Ascaris is being investigated by the University of Washington for us. As there are few incidences of Ascaris found in Ecuador, they are pursuing this by lab studies in Seattle. You are correct - we don't expect to find much reduction in the horizontal tube UNTIL compost reached the outside of the structure, where you can see it's all black (this is a new design change). Temperatures increase about 20°C above ambient due to solar radiation in the black bucket - with moderately high ambient temperatures we expect to see good results.]]>
User interface technology innovations Thu, 05 Mar 2015 16:22:23 +0000
Re: Diversion for Safe Sanitation - Grant on Advanced Toilet with On-Site Water Recovery (Eawag and EOOS, Switzerland and Austria) - by: SteffiE
I just wanted to give you a little update on this project in case you are wondering about its progress: The Gates Foundation has unfortunately decided against giving further funding for this research for now. Reason: they want to focus on “reinvented toilets” that treat all the excreta at the household level, which is something that this toilet cannot do (it is only treating the flush and washwater at the household level).

Nevertheless, things might still be progressing. Eawag is currently talking to a toilet manufacturer who is interested in the filtering mechanism that is installed in the vertical back part of the toilet.

You should also know, that Eawag recently received BMGF-funding for a new project called AUTARKY, to develop a complete on-site treatment toilet. Similar to Blue Diversion, water, urine and feces are being separated and hopefully - by the end of 2016 - treated directly in the toilet. The final products will be water and precipitated solids. However, I don't want to confuse you for which reason we will present AUTARKY in detail in a new thread.

Best regards,
User interface technology innovations Mon, 23 Feb 2015 15:00:07 +0000
Re: Partners wanted for Ghana - by: smecca Note by moderator: This post was originally in this thread:

Household level GSAP Microflush toilets are made by trained local toilet MAKERs in Ghana (as well as other countries) for ~$300US and this incudes a $100 gross profit to the MAKER. The toilets are sustainable, off-grid, flushing on 150 cc (1 cup) of water from the prior user's handwashing. They are harvested for a rich compost after 2-3 years of 15 or uses per day...much less than 1000 sterling.]]>
User interface technology innovations Sun, 01 Feb 2015 22:21:28 +0000
U-ACT Project by ETH Nadel, Sandec and Makerere University (urban affordable, clean toilets - Kampala, Uganda) - by: donahupa]]> User interface technology innovations Wed, 21 Jan 2015 10:04:11 +0000 Re: Much improved Wikipedia page on composting toilets - by: muench
Thanks for your reply.
What does EA-X stand for or is that just the name of your model?

Also on second thoughts I am wondering now if your toilet really classifies as a composting toilet or is it more of a hybrid between UDDT and composting toilet? I mean how do you ensure you have enough moisture and aeration in your composting process? How does the air geht into the pipe, just from each "flush" and addition of new material? Maybe I should rather move it to the UDDT page of Wikipedia rather than the composting page, what would you say?

Also, could you please provide some information about composting toilets and UDDTs in general in Ecuador. Are there any, apart from yours now? (and the ones by Chris Canada which are mentioned in the Wikipedia article here:

And where in the US have they been installed by now?
Why Cambodia, Nepal and South Africa in particular?

What about helminth eggs in the compost, is this something you test for regularly? I would not expect that you get much reduction there as you probably don't have much of a temperature increase in your process or do you?

User interface technology innovations Tue, 13 Jan 2015 20:19:30 +0000
Re: Much improved Wikipedia page on composting toilets - by: chuckhenry Note by moderator: This post was originally here in a thread about composting toilets on Wikipedia:


Hi Elisabeth,

Great effort! A couple modifications to the EarthAuger post... our first production run of 650 of the new injection molded model EA-X have recently been produced; 435 were delivered to Ecuador in October for installation, of which about 100 will have been installed by the end of January. Others have been installed in the US, and are planned for installation in Cambodia, Nepal and South Africa.]]>
User interface technology innovations Tue, 13 Jan 2015 16:08:32 +0000
FaME and U-ACT video now available with French subtitles! - by: donahupa]]> User interface technology innovations Fri, 09 Jan 2015 13:02:12 +0000 Re: Sustainable Decentralized Wastewater Management in Developing Countries (AIT, Thailand) - by: denniskl
Very interesting - and as a non-techie, Thammaratt's system does seem to be very similar, although maybe the thermophilic septic processing part is different?

Can you explain the volumes that can be processed - I see mention of 800 students and 4 units, so can obviously cope with 200 students per day, but what is the volume limit per unit per day?

On the cost side - it's EURO1,500 / USD$1,800 per toilet?

This for the cheapest system and goes up from there?

After 10,000 toilets and refinements and economies of scale, does it still need to be so expensive?

I know there are countless hours of r & d and cleverness and lots of money gone into it (and of course, the profits needed for more r & d etc and to reward you guys - and I am all for a profit - the more the merrier:), but it doesn't seem that there are any particularly expensive components that justify such a high commercial price?

Perhaps country pricing differentials are at play, but I am sure there would be manufacturing and distribution partners in Asia and Africa who, under your licence, can build and distribute systems cheaper, sell more and ensure that many more people get the benefit of your ideas and technology

Perhaps something to consider?]]>
User interface technology innovations Thu, 18 Dec 2014 22:00:48 +0000
Re: Industrial Ultrasound in redesigned toilet seat - by: dineshbr Thanks for the response. At the moment we are experimenting to decide on the optimum parameters for ultrasound transmission. Will share some preliminary results with you soon...


User interface technology innovations Fri, 12 Dec 2014 02:35:09 +0000
Re: Industrial Ultrasound in redesigned toilet seat - by: AParker
Thanks so much for sharing your project here. Can you tell me some more about your process of increasing settling using ultrasound? We are also trying to settle solids rapidly in our Nano Membrane Toilet so surely have a lot to learn from you!

Many thanks

User interface technology innovations Wed, 10 Dec 2014 15:51:15 +0000
Re: Design engineer based in Ireland has developed a lightweight toilet that is capable of operation entirely off grid - by: jankn
As Ben and Marjin already mentioned, it would be great if you could share some more details about the toilet you developed. Did you design it with an Irish context in mind (where about 30% of the population is served by on-site systems) or with a potential for application in middle- and low-income countries?

There is quite some research being done on on-site wastewater treatment, both globally and in Ireland, here at Trinity College in Dublin; have you had the chance to present your prototypes to a wider audience here in Ireland so far?

User interface technology innovations Fri, 05 Dec 2014 12:03:31 +0000
Re: Design engineer based in Ireland has developed a lightweight toilet that is capable of operation entirely off grid - by: Paudie User interface technology innovations Wed, 03 Dec 2014 15:46:01 +0000 Re: Design engineer based in Ireland has developed a lightweight toilet that is capable of operation entirely off grid - by: Paudie Principally it is the will to use it that will determine its impact . Thanks again for taking the time to respond to the reach out]]> User interface technology innovations Wed, 03 Dec 2014 15:37:40 +0000 Re: Design engineer based in Ireland has developed a lightweight toilet that is capable of operation entirely off grid - by: Marijn Zandee
As Ben says above, we are all very curious to see what you have come up with.

With regard to your question. It will be very hard to suggest a place to test your toilet without knowing what you designed it for. I mean that to evaluate your design you have to find a location that presents the situation it was designed for.

If you just want to take on a very large challenge, consider looking at sanitation for informal settlements. Or retro-fitting into densely populated old areas of cities which have grown massively. I would also suggest doing your research in a country where there are such areas, but that at the same time have good universities and research facilities. I think some East African countries or Bangladesh / India may be good candidates.

Finally, usually it is things like user engagement, institutional set-up and a larger enabling environment that determine success or failure and less the actual technology


User interface technology innovations Wed, 03 Dec 2014 03:30:10 +0000