LifeStraw Description

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Source: Vestergaard Frandsen

Life Straw is a simple filter device measures around 25cm long, and can filter up to 700 litres of water. The device uses two textile filters to remove dirt and two chambers, one of which uses a resin impregnated with iodine while the other uses activated carbon to kill bacteria, viruses and parasitic organisms (the activated carbon layer is also intended to remove the taste of iodine).

Swiss-based company Vestergaard Frandsen along with Rob Fleuren and Moshe Frommer


Seven filters including mesh, active carbon and halogenated resin can filter up to 185 gallons of water, killing 99.99% of all bacteria.

Ideal Situation
“The LifeStraw could be a very useful tool in certain emergency situations, especially floods where water access is easy but quality poor”, suggests Paul Hetherington of WaterAid.

Benefits & Drawbacks

  • The device is designed to be have no moving parts, to not require electricity, repair or spare parts.
  • Not a good development tool as it lacks sustainability.


  • Capital Costs: Available for between $3.00 - $5.00 US


References & Links

Contact Information