While a lot of us take the availability of suitable toilets for granted in many countries there are no adequate facilities, a factor that contributes greatly to disease, pollution and countless deaths. To tackle this problem, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are looking to discover a new design for the humble toilet – one that will work without needing a sewer and without needing to be plugged in to the mains.
To find their new toilet design, Gates ran a competition to give others the opportunity to invent something suitable in exchange for a grant to continue developing it. The team that won came up with a sophisticated device that was able to use solar power to turn waste in to hydrogen and fertilizer.
As the winner of the Reinvent the Toilet challenge, the team gets another $100,000 to fine-tune the device, which is a bit more complicated than your ordinary pot.
Source: Think Progress