Folia Water

Duration: Aug 2016 - Dec 2016
Role: Product Research, Lab Management
Supervisors: Teri Dankovich, Cantwell Carson

The challenge: "How effective are Folia Filters at removing particulate matter from unsafe drinking water?"

As a lab associate, I worked in Folia Water's product team within the microbiology lab, and focused on testing the Folia Filters product, a silver-based safe to consume paper that serves as a cheap water filtration solution for those without access to generic or commercial water filters. I tested Folia Water's Tasita apparatus and Folia Filter product together, both of which were designed with intuitive use and non-expert knowledge in mind for communities that have not had education or experience with water filtration.

Product Testing and Research

My role as microbiological lab associate involved growing bacterial cultures of non-pathogenic E. coli, treating water with said cultures to create sample 'infected' influent water, and then running the 'infected' water through the Folia Filters. The effluent water collected through the filter were then analyzed for further bacterial growth, to give an indication of the percentage of surviving bacteria post-filtration. Data collection, analysis, and reporting were key aspects of the role. Our work on Folia Filters helped optimize the ratio of silver in mass-produced Folia Filter paper to allow for cheapest cost and highest reduction of bacteria

Lab Management

As the primary lab associate, I managed the usage of scientific tools and equipment. New projects or protocols were developed and recorded by myself, and then shared with Folia Water for future usage and improvement. Scientific protocols were assessed against existing guidelines and standards, like the World Health Organization and their drinking-water quality guidelines.