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"The Drinkable Book" Photo: YouTube screenshot/University Herald

New “drinkable book” could provide safe drinking water for millions

Oh, the power of research. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon have developed a book containing specially treated pages that decontaminate water and could possibly improve safe drinking water for millions living without it. This book could change millions of lives around the world.

The book was developed by researcher Teri Dankovich and it contains 25 pages, each approximately 1 millimeter thick, with nano particles of silver and copper. The pages are made of filter paper that are meant to be ripped from the book. They are designed for water to be poured through the paper and crush harmful microorganisms and decontaminate polluted water.

Dankovich calls it the “drinkable book.” The low-priced book contains instructions in English and the local language on how to use the pages. Each page can purify up to 100 liters of water and one book can contain a person’s drinking water needs for up to four years, Quartz reports.

Dankovich set out to test the pages on “real water” in Africa, a place where as many as 358 million people do not have access to safe drinking water. One day, Danckovich and her team were directed to a ditch that had been contaminated by raw sewage. The team discovered “millions of bacteria” and she referred to it as a “challenging sample.”

However, Danckovich added that “even with highly contaminated water sources like that one, we can achieve 99.9 percent purity with our silver- and copper-nanoparticle paper, bringing bacteria levels comparable to those of U.S. drinking water.”

“It’s really exciting to see that not only can this paper work in lab models, but it also has shown success with real water sources that people are using” she said.

The results of the field trials were presented at the 250th national meeting of the American Chemical Society Sunday, Pioneer News reports. Obviously, this is just the beginning for Dankovich. Since the success of the project, she has already started her own company and teamed up with the nonprofit WATERisLIFE to continue producing her “book,” which includes additional instructions for water safety on every page.

About Meredith Rodefer

Meredith Rodefer is a freelance writer, who focuses on anything from lifestyle blogging to hard news, and dancer. Beyond Youth Independent, she has written for sites such as Natmonitor.com, CheekyChicago.com and FamilyFocusBlog.com. Contact Meredith: [email protected]