LifeStraw Family 1.0
A family-sized household water filtration unit.
LifeStraw® Family 1.0 is a high-volume, point-of-use water purifier for use in homes without access to clean water from municipal sources. It helps prevent often deadly waterborne diseases for families in developing countries and is effective in emergency settings following natural disasters which can contaminate water.
Ceramic and candle Filters, PureIt, Aquasure, Tata Swach, Ensign, Seefar, PureIt, Marvello, Aquaguard, Emrald, etc.
Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation
Households without access to clean water from municipal sources.
Mass produced. Interview with representative
IP Protected (Patent application number 20100044321) Interview with representative
Users can get the product via distributors during community distribution roll outs in targeted areas. Interview with representative
Product is also available for purchase online from Amazon and North American distributor, Eartheasy.
In 2011, 877,500 LifeStraw Family 1.0 water filters were distributed in Kenya to provide sustainable access to safe drinking water for 4.5 million people. Vastergaard has over 50 full time employees based in Western Province of Kenya who are managing programs.
How often/when should maintenance be performed?
LifeStraw Family achieves ultrafiltration via hollow fiber technology whereby water is forced through narrow fibers under high pressure.
When untreated water is poured into the feed water bucket, the textile prefilter removes coarse particles larger than 80µm. Gravity pushes the water with particles finer than 80µm to flow down the plastic hose towards the purification cartridge. The purification cartridge, which contains a hollow-fibre membrane of 20nm porosity, stops all particles larger than 20nm but bacteria, protozoa, and other contaminants are trapped inside the hollow fibers and are flushed out by backwashing.
Available in an online manual.
Lifestraw Family units are monitored by trained community representatives employed by Vastergaard. Lifestraw users must be trained on the operation and maintenance of the units. Representatives conduct visits to homes to analyze and report on units that are not operating normally. Interview with representative
Replacement systems are available if community representatives determine that the unit is faulty. All units are tracked via QR codes by representatives. Interview with representative
Guaranteed up to 18,000 Liters (4,750 Gallons). According to Vastergaard, enough to supply clean drinking water for a family of five for up to 3 years.
Manufacturer specifies the following:
- Removes minimum 99.9999% of bacteria (>Log 6 reduction)
- Removes minimum 99.99% of viruses (>Log 4 reduction)
- Removes minimum 99.9% of protozoan cysts (>Log 3 reduction)
- Removes turbidity
- Requires no electrical power, batteries or replacement parts
- Requires no running water or piped-in water supply
- Has an easy-to-clean prefilter and purification cartridge
- All raw materials are US Food and Drug Administration compliant or equivalent
Laboratory assessment of a gravity-fed ultrafiltration water treatment device designed for household use in low-income settings. This study was funded by Vestergaard Fransen, ran by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and University of Arizona is the independent laboratory that tested and produced these results via EPA Protocol and Guide Standard for Testing Microbiological Water Purifiers. – Part of LifeStraw Family Evidence Dossier (available by request)
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of Arizona, Intertek Vietnam, Para Membranes, Vestergaard Certification, Assorted Lab Assessments in-country: Pro-Lab (Brazil), Universidad de Antioquia (Colombia), Ministry of Water Resources Lab (Ethiopia), Water Research Institute (Ghana), Delhi Test House (India), Water Aid Lab(Madagascar), Qualibet (Philippines), Rwanda Bureau of Standards (Rwanda), Umgeni WaterAmanzi (South Africa) Interview with representative
Contamination of filtered water is possible with exposed/improper handling and storage.
The improved performance of this model has been addressed by the new and improved LifeStraw Family 2.0, which is now being released to the market.
Clasen, T., et al., Laboratory assessment of a gravity-fed ultrafiltration water treatment device designed for household use in low-income settings, Am J Trop Med Hyg, 2009 May;80(5):819-23.
Complies with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 1987 Guide Standard and Protocol for Testing Microbiological Water Purifiers
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