The standalone BAMBi handwashing station uses recycled water to promote better health and help save water.
Developed by the team at ETH Zurich, the biologically activated membrane bioreactor (BAMBi) recycles handwashing water with the help of a microbial biofilm that builds up on a fine-pored plastic membrane—and a nutritious soap.
Part of a three-stage filtration process, the active biofilm captures and breaks down contaminants, rendering the water safe for hand-washing; but the average person’s hands do not carry enough nutritious contaminants for the biofilm to survive on. So, to help feed the biofilm, the team added nitrogen and phosphorus to the handwashing soap. These added nutrients kept the bacteria healthy enough to remove almost 100 percent of contaminants in the water.