Around the world, countless lives are lost each year due to water crisis. Ready Set Drop is a fund raising and awareness campaign for these emergencies. Our solution is the HydroPack™. It’s a product that provides communities in need with immediate hydration in the aftermath of a disaster. It’s an efficient, cost-effective and short term solution for people without clean water.
The HydroPack is a single-use emergency water filter that delivers 500 milliliters of hydration from virtually any water source. When a HydroPack is dropped in a polluted source, water is filtered as it is drawn through the membrane overnight by osmosis, mixing with electrolytes and nutrient-rich powders to create a safe, flavored and life-saving drink.
Technology Meets Design
The HydroPack uses a unique cellulose membrane that provides the highest degree of filtration possible. This paper-thin barrier – developed by HTI and made from Eastman’s cellulose acetate – blocks dirt, bacteria, viruses and other contaminants with a success rate that exceeds EPA standards for water purification. Once water is drawn in, the HydroPack’s protective membrane eliminates the possibility of recontamination. The nutrient powder inside produces an osmotic pressure that naturally draws water in through the membrane. HTI’s filtration process is known as forward osmosis and is identical to the process plants use to pull water into their roots. Eastman and HTI have collaborated in bringing together a brilliant technology and a thoughtful design to create the safest and most reliable mobile water filtration system available.
Reaching A World In Need
With an effective technology in order, HTI and Eastman sought the help of the design community in refining the idea for a more impactful end product. Modern Edge of Portland worked directly with communities in need to provide ethnographic research that would help identify communications problems and solutions. RKS Design took these ideas and helped shape an integrated approach between technology, design and implementation. Together, these collaborators have come up with a solution that is truly innovative in response to one of the most difficult challenges in any disaster relief effort – providing safe drink for people in need.
Ready Set Drop is the digital media campaign raising funds to acquire and distribute the HydroPack as a global tool for disaster recovery. HydroPacks transform any bad water into clean and nutritious hydration, saving lives and strengthening communities in water crisis situations.
Disasters are a constant threat against community water sources throughout the world. By putting an effective, short-term solution in place, Ready Set Drop will be prepared to respond to water crises around the globe and provide hydration for a world in need.
Natural disasters can happen anywhere with little or no warning. When they do, they threaten community water sources and jeopardize community health by destroying vital pipelines or existing sanitation systems, allowing the introduction of contaminants into the drinking supply. As a result, disaster-struck communities often become victims to the spread of waterborne disease and geographic displacement.
Humans can only live for a few days without hydration. In fact, many deaths occur in the aftermath of a disaster rather than during the initial incident, leaving disaster-struck communities without potable water to face a slow and troublesome recovery.
The early stages after a disaster are the most critical. Communities with access to immediate hydration solutions at the onset of a disaster are better able to rebuild, recover and move forward. Too often, this leads to reliance on air-shipped bottled water as the primary response strategy in a disaster relief situation.
Although bottled water is thought of to be reliable and safe, it’s also costly to transport and often difficult to deliver. In addition, bottled water produces excessive waste. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina and the tsunami in Southeast Asia, millions of bottles were distributed to disaster zones leaving behind considerable and unnecessary waste. We’re ready for an innovative alternative and the HydroPack offers this opportunity.
Ready Set Drop is co-directed by Design Forum PDX, Eastman Chemical and HTI. This partnership is an example of how a successful collaboration between designers and manufacturers leads to an important social cause and solution. This joint effort includes a critical relationship with International Relief and Development and represents a shared primary interest in community well-being. The result is efficiency, simplicity and healthy recovery, offered in times of confusion and disruption.