Bill Moggridge, cofounder of IDEO, presented a tricycle concept which purifies water as the rider pedals at the Design Indaba conference in Cape Town. The “Aquaduct” was developed to assist those living in the developing world who have to travel long distances to collect water which is usually unsafe to drink. Water sources can be miles away from home where women must walk carrying heavy water vessels. The Aquaduct could solve both issues simultaneously.
Behind the tricycle is a large water tank mounted over the rear axles. Once water is collected, the pedaling draws water through a filter to a second removable tank mounted in the front handlebars. A clutch engages and disengages the drive belt from the pedal crank, enabling the rider to filter the water while riding or stationary.
The bike was designed and constructed over a 3 week period for the Innovative or Die contest hosted by Google and Specialized. The concept won first price and the $5000 prize money will be donated to Kickstart, a company focused on water solutions for the developing world. Sponsors of the contest, Specialized and Goodby Silverstein & Partners, matched the donation to total $15,000. You can watch a video of the tricycle here.