Water purifier abstract
The water purification system and associated method of the present
invention consists of a generally self-contained, highly maneuverable,
portable water purification system. Maneuverability is enhanced
by mounting a cabinet on wheels or on a cart that may be easily
guided to a water supply. Power is supplied to the system in a solar
cell. The power is used to operate the pump of the system and to
power the purifying radiation source. The system can also be used
as a portable power source in addition to its capacity as a water
Water purifier claims
What is claimed is:
1. A portable, highly maneuverable, water purification system,
comprising: a mobile cabinet having a water purification system
including: a water conduit, where the water conduit retrieves water
from an unpurified water supply and transfers water through the
water purification system; a plurality of filters connected by said
conduit, where the conduit and plurality of filters creates a continuous
water flow from an entry cavity to an exit cavity of the purification
system; at least one ultraviolet (UV) light source located within
the cabinet downstream from the filters connected to said conduit;
solar power source; a pump connected to said conduit and said solar
power source; and a time delay mechanism where the time delay mechanism
delays the functioning of the pump for a predetermined time period.
2. The system of claim 1 wherein the plurality of filters includes
at least one screen filter for screening solid larger particulates
in the water.
3. The system of claim 2 wherein the plurality of filters includes
a carbon filter located downstream from the screen filter.
4. The system of claim 1 further comprising: a supply hose; and
a pre-strainer of the water to be purified located between the supply
hose and an ingress.
5. The system of claim 1 further comprising a battery power supply
located within the cabinet.
6. The system of claim 5 wherein power to the pump is supplied
after power is supplied to the UV light.
7. The system of claim 6 wherein the pump brings the water to
be purified to at least approximately 40 psi of head pressure.
8. The system of claim 5 further comprising a power receptacle
for providing electrical power located outside the cabinet.
9. The system of claim 5 further comprising a solar cell in electronic
communication with the power supply.
10. The system of claim 5 wherein the power supply is adaptable
to electronic communication with an outside power source.
11. The system of claim 5 further comprising a malfunction indicator
for the UV light.
12. The system of claim 1 further comprising: wheels for rolling
the system, and a handle mechanism for directing the cabinet.
13. The system of claim 1 wherein the interior of the cabinet
is protected with a closeable mechanism.
14. A portable, highly maneuverable apparatus for purifying water,
comprising: cabinet means for receiving water to be purified, including;
means for filtering the water located inside the cabinet means;
means for exposing the water to purifying radiation located within
the cabinet downstream from the means for filtering; pump means
powered by solar power; a time delay means, where the time delay
means delays the functioning of the pump means for a pre-determined
period; and a continuous water flow means, where the water flow
means retrieves water from an unpurified water supply and transfers
water through the water purification system.
15. The apparatus of claim 14 further comprising: means for supplying
water to the cabinet means; and means for supplying power to means
for supplying water located within the cabinet means.
16. The apparatus of claim 15 further comprising means for supplying
power to the means for exposing the water to purifying radiation.
17. The apparatus of claim 15 further comprising a means for obtaining
solar power for charging the means for supplying power.
18. The apparatus of claim 14 further comprising wheels for rolling
the system; and a handle mechanism for directing the cabinet.
19. A method of purifying water within a portable, highly maneuverable
cabinet system, comprising the steps of: providing a portable, highly
maneuverable cabinet for the purification of water; placing a series
of filters within the cabinet; activating a pump within the cabinet;
delaying the step of activating a pump for a pre-determined period
of time; retrieving unpurified water via an inlet hose attached
to the cabinet; continuously transferring the unpurified water through
the series of filters; exposing the unpurified water to at least
one ultraviolet (UV) light source located within the cabinet downstream
from the filtering step, where step of exposing creates purified
water; immediately transferring the purified water out of the cabinet
via an outlet pipe; and using solar power to supply energy to the
20. The method of claim 19 wherein the cabinet includes a solar
power supply and battery.
21. The method of claim 20 wherein the cabinet is capable of operating
as a portable power source.
Water purifier description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
The invention relates generally to a portable water purification
system, and specifically to a self-contained, highly mobile, solar
powered portable water purification system.
2. Description of Related Art
The importance of having water purification systems are especially
critical in third world countries or remote areas which have concentrations
of people for human survival. Numerous different types of water
purification systems have been devised which include chemicals such
as chlorine, ozone and filters to make the water consumable by human
beings. Mobile water filtration and chlorination systems are known
in the prior art. U.S. Pat. No. 5399260 issued to Eldredge, et
al. shows a field portable water purification system. This system
uses a diesel engine to transport and draw water from a source through
the filtration system into some sort of container. U.S. Pat. No.
5547584 issued to Capehart shows a transportable self-contained
water purification system. Some of the drawbacks of the prior art
units are that they require diesel fuel for diesel motors and the
use of a combustion engine as a power source adds to the overall
weight of the unit decreasing its mobility especially in remote
areas. In remote regions and especially in some third world countries
even getting fuel for combustion engines is a difficult process.
The present invention overcomes problems with the prior art by
providing a highly mobile water purification system that includes
a self-contained power supply that provides for solar power to an
electrical battery that powers an electrical motor that is used
for the pumping action in the purification process. The system also
includes ultraviolet radiation for purification in addition to a
plurality of filters that remove different undesirable particulates
from the water supply. The system is highly mobile by a single person
and can be directed in remote areas through woods and other type
areas. The system may also provide additional energy from its solar
cells to other equipment if necessary.
SUMMARY OF INVENTION
A self-contained, highly mobile, compact and relatively light weight
portable water purification system for remote geographical areas
that lack a power supply comprising a rigid cabinet the exterior
of the cabinet covered with solar cells, a first inlet pipe for
receiving contaminated water, a pump mounted inside said cabinet,
a plurality of water filters connected together serially to perform
filtration on the pumped water, an ultraviolet radiation chamber
that radiates ultraviolet rays into the water being purified at
the final stage and an outlet pipe for receiving and dispensing
Mounted inside the cabinet is also a battery and an electrical
system for providing power to the water pump and a delay circuit
that allows the ultraviolet radiation unit to warm up for approximately
ten seconds before the pump is turned on. The exterior of the housing
may be made of a any material including but not limited to plastic
or metal and has mounted on the exterior surfaces (to cover as much
surface area as possible) a plurality of solar cells or solar panels
containing cells each of which generate electricity when subjected
to sun light and which provide the electricity to the storage battery
(which is typically a 12 volt battery). An inverter may be used
to provide a 120 volt A/C current to the pump or to an electrical
receptacle mounted on the exterior of the housing to receive an
electric plug to power accessory equipment. In areas of high sun
light, the system may also be used as an electrical supply source
when sufficient electrical power is available for purification.
Attached to the cabinet is at least one axle with two large wheels
or a plurality of wheels depending on the type of environment anticipated.
A manual handle bar that is removable, collapsible and telescopic
is attached to the upper portion or side of the cabinet to allow
the device to be manually wheeled in any desired direction. By using
the exterior cabinet surfaces, additional solar cells can be added
and disposed and panels could be mechanically hinged to the device
to provide for additional solar power under certain circumstances,
in areas of low sun light.
In using the invention, the entire device is manually wheeled to
a suitable area that has a polluted water supply that is typically
fresh water and not salt water. A hose is disposed in the polluted
water supply. The power switch is turned on. The pump turn on is
delayed about ten seconds to allow the ultraviolet radiation unit
to get up to full power in the UV chamber. A series of water filters
and strainers are provided in a conduit path of the water supply
to be purified mounted inside the housing for multiple stages such
as first stage filter, a second stage filter and a third stage filter.
The inlet water is carried in a plastic PVC pipe from the inlet
hose to the outlet hose through each filter and the UV chamber for
ultraviolet radiation for killing bacteria. The amount of gallons
per minute is a function of the diameter of the pipe, the size of
the pump and the amount of time of transition desired the filters
and through the UV chamber.
It is an object of this invention to provide a highly mobile, solar
powered fresh water purification system especially for use in remote
and urban areas.
It is another object of this invention to provide;a highly mobile
solar powered water purification system that can also provide additional
electrical power from solar energy in remote areas in addition to
the water purification.
Any yet still another object of this invention is to provide a
highly efficient self-contained water purification system that can
be easily maneuvered in remote and urban areas that does not require
petroleum fuel sources for energy.
In accordance with these and other objects which will become apparent
hereinafter, the instant invention will now be described with particular
reference to the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 shows a schematic diagram of the present invention including
the purification system mounted inside a mobile cabinet.
FIG. 2 shows a perspective view of the present invention.
FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of the present invention.
Referring now to the drawings and especially FIG. 1 the present
invention is shown schematically mounted in a housing 24 that contains
strainers S1 and S2 connected together by the inlet pipe 16. An
inlet hose 12 draws water from a source 44 that is polluted, that
is fresh water but not drinkable by human beings for various pollution
problems. The inlet hose 12 is connected to a fitting 14 that allows
the water to flow into pipe 16 within the cabinet 24. A pre-strainer
S1 removes the particulates from the inlet water. An additional
strainer S2 can be used connected to pipe 16 as the water flows
from pre-strainer S1 into strainer S2. The source of the flow energy
for the water is a pump P 32 that draws the water from the inlet
hose 12 from source 44 through the entire cabinet 24 as described.
The pump draws the water from the source 44 at a pressure of about
40 psi or greater. The pump P is an electrical pump powered by a
battery 46B connected electrically to on/off switch 48 SW. The battery
power 46 goes through an inverter 30 that can be used to convert
DC to a 110 volt A/C system. A pump delay element 34 allows the
ultraviolet radiation to "warm up" to full power in the
ultraviolet chamber 36 that contains an ultraviolet radiation source
that destroys bacteria in the water by radiation. By having a ten
second delay ensures that water contained in chamber 36 will be
purified through the ultraviolet radiation. Once the pump 32 is
running, water from screen 52 goes through the pump 32 into a first
filter F1. The first stage filter F1 removes particles down to one
micron in size. This removes any water borne cysts. The water then
under pressure leaves the first stage filter and enters filter F2
which will filter particulates down to 0.35 microns. This stage
cleans most of the turbidity or dirt and anything else that may
get past stage F1. As the water leaves the filter F2 it enters
filter F3 which is solid or granular carbon filter. The filter F3
polishes the water to a crystal clear state. It can also sweeten
the water for better taste. The carbon blocked filter F3 removes
chlorine and most organic chemicals and lead. The water then leaves
the carbon filter F3 and enters the fourth stage which is a UV chamber
36. Water in the reactor chamber 36 receives the ultraviolet rays
which kills all living organisms by the DNA exposure to ultraviolet
rays within chamber 36. As water exits the UV chamber 36 it is
now pure in the sense that it is safe for human beings to drink
the water. Other filters can be added to remove specific impurities
that are unique to other areas of the world. A bulk head fitting
20 connected to pipe 16 is in fluid communication with the exit
pipe 22 which can deposit water into a receptacle 38 either directly
or indirectly to collect the purified water.
Note also that the battery 46 is connected to a solar cell C40
which can have numerous solar cells C40 disposed all over the outside
of the cabinet connected by wires to the battery or directly to
the pump wiring. This allows for maximum solar charging of the battery
B. The inverter 30 is used to convert 12 volt battery power current
into 120 volt AC when necessary. This could provide receptacle 28
(which is an external electrical receptacle) to provide additional
power to other accessory machinery in a remote location if there
is excess battery power available. The receptacle also allows for
A/C power to be plugged into the unit if it were available in an
urban location to charge the battery and to drive the pump 32 from
a 110 volt source if available.
The power control is comprised of the on/off source 48 SW which
is the AC/DC power switch, a pump time delay (which can be ten seconds
or more) 34 to hold the pump off until the ultraviolet light comes
up to full power in the chamber 36. The water passing through the
ultraviolet chamber 36 assumes a 99.9% kill rate of bacteria. A
relay can be used with inverter 30 to block out the power being
provided from two different power sources external and battery if
available. The system may include an indicator light and an alarm
A to alert problems with the ultraviolet radiation unit. The alarm
A is mounted on the outside of the cabinet and connected electrically
to UV unit in chamber 36.
Referring now to FIG. 2 the outside cabinet or housing 24 of the
portable water purifier system is shown. The housing 21 is made
of any suitable rectangular material and may have an access door
54 with hinges 54a. A handle bar 50 is connected to the housing
that allows maneuvering the cabinet 24 which is connected to wheels
26 on each side. The handle bar 50 may fold down or be removable
The solar cells C40 are mounted on five or six surfaces of the
housing for increased solar power collection to capture as much
solar energy as possible, useful in urban or remote locations. Thus
each side and end panel that makes up housing 24 can include additional
solar cells 40 which are electrically connected to the battery for
charging the battery when not in use.
FIG. 3 shows portable purifier 10 and housing 24 on the purified
water outlet side. The outlet hose 22 is a source of purified water
under pressure for use with a water container. Additional solar
panels C40 can be used. An alarm that can be used to warn of any
problems with the ultraviolet.
Using the present invention drinkable, portable water can be obtained
from any fresh water source regardless of how polluted in any remote
region that has even a moderate amount of sun light through the
use of the solar cells that collect solar energy to charge a battery.
The mobile unit can also be easily maneuvered with two large wheels
as shown or additional wheels if required for any type of terrain.
The wheels can be solid material such as rubber, tubeless or tube
containing tires. The unit is easy to maneuver manually because
of its light weight since it does not have a huge, heavy internal
combustion engine typically found on other water purification systems.
In the electrical wiring of the system if an external power source
is available, a relay locks out one of the two voltage power sources
from being on together that could cause a short.
There is also the option of mounting a battery charger on board
to speed up the battery recharge cycle if needed. In addition the
system may be used as a portable power source to run accessories
such as a light, radio, tv, or power tools.
The instant invention has been shown and described herein in what
is considered to be the most practical and preferred embodiment.
It is recognized, however, that departures may be made therefrom
within the scope of the invention and that obvious modifications
will occur to a person skilled in the art.